Rolling Stone picks the 100 greatest guitarists of all time in the new issue coming out Friday:
- Late rock musicians Jimi Hendrix and Duane Allman lead the list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time in the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone magazine.
Hendrix, who invariably tops such polls, received a glowing tribute from Who guitarist Pete Townshend, who wrote that he “made the electric guitar beautiful.”
Allman was hailed by the magazine for transforming “the poetry of jamming” with the Allman Brothers Band, the Atlanta rock group he founded with younger brother Gregg in 1969.
B.B. King, who turns 78 next month, came in at No. 3. “His string-bending and vibrato made his famous guitar, Lucille, weep like a woman,” the magazine said.
Clapton landed at No. 4, followed by Delta bluesman Robert Johnson. Rounding out the top 10 were Chuck Berry, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Ry Cooder, Jimmy Page and Keith Richards. [Reuters]
I don’t have much comment until I see the complete list, but it’s hard to argue with the top 10, although it is of course rock-oriented. Even within rock I wouldn’t put Stevie Ray that high.
I am pleased to see the now relatively obscure Peter Green, the original guitarist for Fleetwood Mac during their blues days, make the list of 100. Green, who didn’t record much for decades, released a new album earlier this year, Reaching the Cold 100. Although his voice is pretty well shot (he sings a bit like Clapton, but even more laconic and at times shaky), Green’s signature guitar sound – unforced, unhurried, apt, stinging when it needs to be – is remarkably intact.
In addition to new songs Green also had the nerve to re-record four of his best-known Fleetwood Mac songs for the album, including “Black Magic Woman” (he even incorporates a bit of the Santana cover arrangement), “Green Manalishi,” and the spellbinding instrumental “Albatross.” While he doesn’t match the originals, he does hold his own pretty well with his much younger self.
Though there are a ton of collections, the best Green-period Fleetwood Mac package is the very reasonably priced Sony import Best of Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac, which has the aforementioned classics plus the ineffable “Oh Well,” in addition to “Need Your Love So Bad,” “Man of theWorld,” “Rattlesnake Shake,” all the goodies – magical.