Top Rock Organists

The Top TenXW

1Ray Manzarek (The Doors)

Ray played two instruments in one, and did so without sacrificing either instrument. Organs have typically served as decoration for any band they are a part of. Ray was a foundation, and undoubtedly the most skilled instrumentalist within his band. His spot on Number one is well deserved and he needs more recognition, even in death!

How can ray even be put in a list with these guys. RUSH? They could easily be the most overrated band ever. Ray is easily the most talented rock organist out there! He could even sing. One time Jim got so drunk he couldn't sing, so ray was playing with his right hand and also the bass along with singing. Talk about multitasking!

Ray Manzarek, Vocals, Bass, rhythm. Created the greatest intro of all time. He is and will always be the number 1 organist of all time.

He broke on through to the other side

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2Jon LordJohn Douglas "Jon" Lord was an English composer, pianist, and Hammond organ player known for his pioneering work in fusing rock with classical or baroque forms, especially with Deep Purple, as well as Whitesnake, Paice Ashton Lord, The Artwoods, and The Flower Pot Men.

Considering the look of this list, I'd say Jon Lord needs to be closer to the top. Name 1 Rush song with actual organ in it, He plays synthesizer and Piano, and barely ever piano.

To me he was a great organ player. A genius. Had a lot to do with deep purple's sound. Also keith Emerson should be in top five

He was a legend of a rock organ player and an overall great composer

Loudest organist!

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3Geddy Lee (Rush)Geddy Lee Weinrib, OC, known professionally as Geddy Lee, is a Canadian musician, singer and songwriter best known as the lead vocalist, bassist, and keyboardist for the Canadian rock group Rush.

Lee is an awesome organist. Listen to the organ solo to yz.

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4Gregg Allman (The Allman Brothers Band)

Every member of the Allman Brothers Band is a master of his respective craft and Gregg Allman is no exception. And not only could he groove hard on the organ, but also spit out some incredible vocals. Truly one of the greatest.

Gregg is always overshadowed by those great guitarists. Just listen to what he does, he is very good, and he has been doing it forever!

5Axl Rose (Guns N Roses)William Bruce Rose Jr.,better known as 'Axl Rose', was born on February 6, 1962, in Lafayette, Indiana, USA. He Is the founder and lead singer of the hard rock band Guns N' Roses. He is a celebrated but controversial figure in the world of rock.

even as a child he is great in piano - ronluna

6David Lee Roth (Van Halen)David Lee Roth is an American rock vocalist, songwriter, actor, author, and former radio personality.

He is no organist, he is a vocalist who can play 4 chords on a keyboard.

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7Rick Wakeman

He's just fantastic the whole classic Yes lineup was.
It's amazing how David Lee Roth is consider #2. Eddie Van Halen played the key boards for Jump not Diamond Dave. - Cygnus2II2

8Keith EmersonKeith Noel Emerson was an English keyboardist and composer. Emerson played in a number of bands before he found his first commercial success with the Nice.

Listen to Tarkus, Karn evil 9, or just any song by ELP and you will hear Emerson's great hammond beauty - jamalam17z7

Sadly, this "Best of All Rock Organists" list is a farce. Most of the voters are kids with little-to-no knowledge of the TRULY legendary Hammond organists...
Any list that doesn't place Keith Emerson within the top THREE is absurd. All the great rock musicians since the mid-60's and on regarded him as not only the most outrageously talented keyboardist to ever play in the rock idiom, but also as the veritable "Jimi Hendrix" of the Hammond organ.
Not just good, not just a keyboard prodigy... he was INCOMPARABLE.
Additionally, his most worthy Hammond organ rivals for #1 would have been Rick Wakeman, Jon Lord, and a name totally MISSING from this list (another outrage! ): Santana's and Journey's Gregg Rolie... These are the Hammond organ LEGENDS.

Best organist ever heard
Rick Wakeman is probably the second one at least for me

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9Sammy Hagar (Van Halen)Samuel Roy "Sammy" Hagar, also known as The Red Rocker, is an American rock vocalist, guitarist, songwriter, musician and entrepreneur.
10Page McConnell (Phish)

Listen to any Phish song, ever. Call him a dirty hippy, call him a stoned musician, call him brilliant!

You haven't seen the ebony and ivory sing until you've seen McConnell throw down. - Christian.H.Mills

The Contenders

11James Hetfield (Metallica)James Alan Hetfield was born on August 3, 1963. He is an American musician, singer and songwriter known for being the co-founder, lead vocalist, rhythm guitarist and main songwriter for the American heavy metal band Metallica.

Simply amazing... Cant say anything else!

12Steve Winwood
13Lee Michaels

Simply the best rock organist. The British players, aside from Jon Lord, tended to over complicate or do horrible things to classical music. Lee didn't. Check out the blue album and the live recordings in the Concert Vault. Tell Me How Do You Feel and Stormy Monday were the best tracks. Also try Jimmy McGriff and Groove Holmes live on Giants of the Organ for amazing jazz playing.

The only one to be seriously considered because the only one that was a bandleader/player/vocalist

14John Paul JonesJohn Baldwin, better known by his stage name John Paul Jones, is an English multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, composer, arranger and record producer.

Go right now and listen to a very famous Led Zep boot called "Listen To This Eddie". You will find it hard not to listen to entire show... But listen to JPJ on the phenomenal No Quarter... you'll be a believer.

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15Jack White
16Goldy McJohn

He is the organist of Steppenwolf. He can play incredible psychedelic solos, such as Magic Carpet Ride.

17Matthew Fisher

If only it was for a whiter shade of pale, but listen to the DVD Procol Harum in the Union Chapel and all of his music.

18Jimmy McGriff
19Al Kooper

Should have composed music for broadway. That is an absolute compliment to the same guy who plays the start on the greatest rock son of them all...like a rolling stone.

20Doug Ingle

Both Iron Butterfly and Steppenwolf had far better organ than Manzarek or Rush. Jon Lord comes close.

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