My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #5 – Ramon Montoya

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any videos of Ramon Montoya. The one above is of his nephew, Carlos Montoya.

Ramon Montoya is, without a doubt, one of the greatest flamenco guitarists to ever have lived. His compositions have left a lasting mark on this very complex genre of music. It is one thing to playing the guitar – it is another to sing and play rhythm simultaneously. This is why I put Ramon Montoya at number 5 on the all-time list. The talent, the influence, the legacy – he really did have it all. Enjoy!

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Top 5 Coming….

Please forgive the brief hiatus from posting my remaining Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists.

I’ve recently become a home owner and have been frantically working on a few small projects that must get done quickly. I am going to attempt to post #5 later tonight. You won’t be disappointed!

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My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #6 – Jimi Hendrix

I’m going to kindly ask that you wait until you see my remaining Top 5 before you give me a piece of your mind concerning this pick!

Don’t get me wrong – Hendrix is amazing. He reigned in distortion better than any other guitar player. His playing is out of this world. No one has come close to emulating him (well, maybe Stevie Ray Vaughan) and his style/technique. I really wonder how Hendrix’s playing would have evolved had he not died so young.

I’ve always wondered why so many guitar magazines have Hendrix as #1. I think you’ll see that, especially in terms of technical excellence, there are several guitarists who have Hendrix beat.

What do you think?

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My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #7 – Eric Clapton.

What would a Top 10 list be without Eric Clapton? Clapton continues to draw hundreds of thousands of fans to his live performances. His legacy is huge – and he isn’t even dead! Clapton is a phenomenal blues guitarist and plays with a lot of feeling, as is demonstrated in the video above. Enjoy!

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My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #8 – David Gilmour.

No guitarist is as good at note-bending and sustaining than David Gilmour. His work with Pink Floyd has contributed to that band selling more than 250 million records worldwide as of 2010. Apart from his work with Pink Floyd, he has had a successful solo career and has achieved great recognition for his work as a producer.

Gilmour achieves the delicate balance between flashy lead guitar player and unwavering rhythmic guitarist. He has a very distinct sound and has contributed mightily to the progression of rock guitar throughout the later half of the 20th century and into the 21st century.

Unfortunately, WordPress will only let me post one video. The one I have chosen to post is the solo from Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” during the P.U.L.S.E. tour. In my opinion, this is the greatest solo of all time. I’ll have to explain why I think that in another post some other time.

If you want to see more, I suggest watching this video. Gilmour did this song for Fender’s 50th anniversary party. It is amazing! Enjoy!

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My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #9 – Stevie Ray Vaughan.

If we’re strictly talking blues, I would put SRV in the top 3. The man typifies the blues. In my opinion, there is no one better who understands and creatively uses dynamics in music. Period. Stevie not only played the blues, he felt the blues. He was the total package. He communicated feeling through his facial expressions and his fingers, as well as the sound that emanated from his guitar. I remember seeing SRV on Austin City Limits in October, 1989. My brother and I were awestruck at SRV’s abilities.

Stevie Ray Vaughan scores high in the categories of technical excellence, contribution to music (he revolutionized modern blues guitar), legacy, and influence (he is often cited by up and coming guitarists such as John Mayer and Kenny Wayne Shepherd).

Personally, I’m always angry at magazines like Rolling Stone who often have him ranked too low (#7 and #12 lately). It is a bit shocking because the magazine focuses solely on rock-n’-roll and blues. Overall, when considering every genre of guitar, I think #9 is a fair place for SRV. He is certainly one of the Top 10 greatest guitarists to live.

So, what do you think? Does he deserve better? Or am I too generous? Feel free to comment below!

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My Top 15 Favorite/Best Guitarists. #10 – Pat Metheny

Pat Metheny is best known as one of the premier jazz guitarists of our age. But to classify him as only a “jazz guitarist” wouldn’t be fair. His contributions have been many, and not just to the jazz/fusion world.

Metheny has a very distinct sound. As far as technical excellence is concerned, Metheny can hang with anybody in ANY Top 10 Greatest Guitarists list.

My reason for having him in the Top 10? Besides technical excellence, he has revolutionized jazz guitar and demonstrates a creativity that is out of this world. I have seen him live – and he does NOT disappoint. I distinctly remember him playing his 42 string – yes, 42 – guitar.

If you’re impatient and not the jazz fusion type, Metheny really gets going at the 2:00 mark of the video. Enjoy!

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