Brian Harold May is an English musician, singer, songwriter and astrophysicist, best known as the lead guitarist of the rock band Queen.
So, let me get this straight. Everyone, and I mean everyone on this list eats Slash for breakfast. I simply can't see your point when you fuss about him being the best guitar player, or even the best 'soloist'. Really, people? November rain is the best you can get? Well, if you pop in any Queen song, it will most definitely have a solo that humiliates all. But if you are going for harmonies, try My bijou. If it's for creativity, check out Brighton rock. And if you are someone to be amused only by the speed (which is a shame), then Princes of the Universe shall blow your mind. But then again, I could have mentioned basically any songs from the band, from The march of the Black Queen to Crazy little thing called love (for those rockabilly fans), so this is just a little appetizer for you all, and also a friendly reminder that you should check out others before you decide to stick with the current favourite.
For all the creative genius of Roger Taylor and the dramatics of Freddie Mercury, it was Brian May's musical talent and in particular his amazing talent on guitar that made Queen one of the greatest bands ever. It's harder to make a statement with the guitar in the style of Queen than with the heavier metal but May achieved it in spades.
Brian is the BEST of all! Including Slash and the overrated Jimi H.
QUEEN is the GREATEST BAND on Earth, largely due to the genius of Brian May, as well as the rest, esp, of course, the greatest frontman ever to have lived, FREDDIE MERCURY! They had this wonderful symbiotic relationship in which they brought out the best in each other, encouraging one another to go higher and better, which they did, thereby becoming the most awesome and absolutely THE BEST BAND on the planet, going where no other band had ventured, before or since, producing over 40 different genres of music, each so diff, so unique, so incredibly brilliant! Most innovative and eclectic band ever! QUEEN!
Come on, people! You can't forget forget May! I mean, besides being an awesome guitarist, he's an awesome songwriter. He's not a showman like Hendrix, he's a pure musician. He doesn't need speed to impress, he focused on making the music sound good. Guitar is accompaniment, and that's all it needed to be for him. Of course, he had some awesome solos too.
He's very underrated. That probably has to do with the fact that MOST Queen classics don't feature much guitar play. But if you listen to the guitar heavy Queen songs as well as his solo songs, you will be blown away with the things he could do with that guitar. There's a reason Queen put on their early albums "No synthesizers", because people wouldn't realize that those sounds were actually from Brian's guitar. He also built his guitar, literally with his own two hands, so he's responsible for his guitar being able to make unusual sounds. Not number one, but deserves to be mentioned with the likes of Hendrix, Clapton, Slash, and Beck.
So versatile: not only with his red special but also with acoustic guitar; not only big arena and theatre playing but also in smaller venues. And a very generous player as well, always willing to help younger artistes. For me that makes him the greatest player. But Brian himself would say that Jimi Hendrix and others deserve that because he is modest. But what shines out whenever he is playing, whether as a Queen member or in his own right, is his love of the music. For that alone he deserves the number one slot.
Brian May deserves a number 1 spot! The fusion between the melodic and the hard rock riffs is amazingly wonderful. Also he's very talented as a songwriter and song engineer. Aside from the many well-known hits by Queen, which most of us still love to hear and talk about, I will enhance songs like Father to Son, White Man, Sail Away Sweet Sister and Brian's touch on Fight From the Inside, it's all very emotional and tough at the same time. It seems the more careful you listen to the songs the more you seems to find. Like a colourful painting where fine strokes hides among the obvious. Queen music without BM would be very naked and would not have been able to tell the stories properly. May delivers the magic dust that makes the music insanely interesting and provides an everlasting durability.
Brian May is a musical genius, he has a home made guitar which he's been using since a teen, he plays with such precision and concentration and the sound is just like no other, you immediately recognize a Queen song from Brian's guitar, his solo in Brighton Rock blows every guitarist out of the water. Watching him play is amazing. He also has a PHD which he put on hold to pursue his music career, the man is truly the 8th wonder of the world!
Immediate distinctive and never relied on sheer speed just to impress. His virtuosity and creative talents are incredible and he is also a great songwriter
It takes just one single note to say "it's Brian! ", and that note is much better than any incredibly fast solo.. Nobody has his touch and sound, and come on, nobody on Earth became so great with a home-built guitar and is at the same time a fantastic (and innovative) guitarist, a Hall of Fame songwriter, a great singer, a doctor and much more.. Queen are made of 4 genius's and incredibly talented and unique musicians at the same level, no other band's like them!.. All these guitarists are fantastic, DR. MAY IS MAGIC!
Brian guitar melodies are awesome. Listen to songs like Days of our Lives, Bohemian Rhapsody, Too Much Love Will Kill You, We are the Champions, and of course you will realise that Brian May may just be one of the greatest guitarist to ever grace this planet... Lest I forget, he is also a brilliant songwriter with hits such as Who Wants to Live Forever and We Will Rock You. But Brian strength lies in the fact that he can do just anything with a guitar!
Brian May plays very dynamic solos. His riffs are often just running scales, but he does it with incredible variances in timing and attack. Other guitarists can attempt to copy his style, but they fall short of his abilities. He injects such emotion into his work that the listener not only hears his solos, but feels them, as well - often with lightening bolt intensity. He rises above most all other rock guitarists and certainly deserves a spot in the top ten.
For me the greatest guitarist race is like the knights of the round table and Brian is Arthur. He may not have the talents of Lancelot (Eddie Van Halen), but so long as he wields Excalibur (The Red Special) he will always be king. Plus he masters solo construction, is the king of effects (especially delay) and knows when to be more present and less, accompanying a song in the finest manner. He is the man!
Absolutely... What an insult that this guitar god is at 12 on the list. I get sick of people always being sniffy about Queen in general as if it's a little embarrassing to say it like it really is. they are quite simply the best of british rock bands ever and Brian May quite simply the most intelligent, inventive and accomplished around and also a thoroughly decent person. Check out record and ticket sales let alone the influence on other bands and artists. MAY you rock on forever
Someone once said, "With Freddie Mercury as your front man, You're lucky anyone even notices you play guitar". Brain May is so underrated. He built that guitar, the Red Special, with his father when he was 17. He pulls out of it the most unique sounds. And even when he's just shredding it... It still sounds melodious.
The last reason is that I think that guitarists are FIRST OF ALL musicians. He can play guitar, piano, bass, drums, harp, synths and sing. These are skills that guitarists like Slash or others don't have and that's why Brian is a better musician (so he is a better guitarist too) than them. The Best Song Ever By this Top Ten Lists is played by Queen with Brian May on the Guitar
When people think "best guitarists ever", it keeps the same clichés. Hendrix, Page, Clapton, Van Halen. Brian May is usually on that same list, but lower. Much lower. People usually underrate Brian May for various unnecessary reasons. But if you are a Queen fan, you know how good this man truly is. He's the reason that for Queen's first 8 albums, there were GOOSE-EGG synthesizers: the reason was Brian. He's the reason his homemade guitar, the Red Special is probably the most famous homemade guitar ever: the reason was Brian. Everything about this man was perfect. The majority of fans of guitar gods keep to Hendrix, Page, Clapton, etc... But the greatest guitar-god fans say Brian May is one of the greatest, if not THE greatest, guitarist of all time
This guy is simply awesome, has a brilliant and isntantly recognisable tone, and great virtuosity & technical skill. He can rock hard (Stone cold crazy, the riffing in keep yourself alive, brighton rock, I want it all) he can create very beautiful emotive work (Last horizon, bijou, friends will be friends, love of my life) & playing which can be simply described as: Brian May (Killer Queen, lazing on a sunday afternoon, the solo in keep yourself alive, march of the black queen). He is a rock guitar genius.
The top 5 should be this (in no particular order, they're too awesome for me to decide): Eddie Van Halen, Slash, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, and Brian. May can do everything from flamenco to hard rock (plus he can play piano! ) Honestly, him and Red Special just make magic together. Like I said, these GODS of guitar need to be the top 5. Like, right now.
Get real, he's right below Clapton and Page which should be the top3, unless your talking just the best rhythm players who are overall some of the best in history, Keith Richards, Peter Townsend, George and Malcom Young, etc. Comparing musicians is like comparing your best sexual experience when you have had hundreds, but Michael Hutchence was Mick Jagger and Jim Morrison combined period!
He's the one man who influenced loads of the technical guitarists of today. He showed the world that you can keep even technicalities very simple. His solos always tends to complement Freddie's powerful vocals and lyrics. The Bohemian Rhapsody solo really sounds like a child calling out to his mother, just as much as Freddie's vocals do. - ameentheguitarist23
One of the best guirs ever made by himself and his dad from an old mantle price and some old motorcycle parts. I think probably the best guitar ever made despite mad produced fenders and Gibsons out there. Brian also noticed Jeff Becks solo in hi ho silver lining had a very slight delay so played on it and wrote solos like Brighton Rock. Brian is a big Hendrix fan and has made albums with guitarists like Eddi Van Galen. Brian isn't noted for being a super fast guitar player as Jeff Beck said his solos are mind blowing as you can sing/hum/while his solos. A truly brilliant guitarist and part of what made Queen the super group they were.
Amazing guitar player. This man played his guitar like a angel! He should be at least number 5 on this list. He deserves to be right next to Jimi Hendrix and Bob Klose at the top of the chart! He is often underrated or unnoticed because he played in a band with the most successful and greatest singer of all time.
Brian may was and is still the greatest guitarist ever to go into the music buisness. He built his guitar and unlike many guitarists, he is calm while he is playing yet he is amazing. He is not like, for instance, Angus Young and his "spasms". Brian May should be number one on this list.
Hard to shine next to a gem like Freddie Mercury, but his solos are magnificent and his guitar skills impeccable. Plus, he scratch made his own guitar. That may sound like a neat trivia note, but that kind of thing gives you a fundamental knowledge of an instrument that you can't just pick up otherwise.