Most Innovative GuitaristsAll these guys made major contributions to guitar playing, be it in terms of technique, tone, style or simply feel. They changed the way people would see guitar, over the years, and are very much responsible for what we see it as today.
The Top Ten
No one proceeds Hendrix in this area in my book he literally rewrote the book on how to play the guitar in many ways not just flash but creating new audio landscapes, merging styles, creating new ones while apexing the old.
He created the sound you hear in every hard rock and roll song after 1967. A true legend.
Who else can make the guitar scream and still sound good?
He should be number 1
While many other influential guitarists made guitarists everywhere want to play like them, Eddie made people from all over the world go out and buy a guitar.
While other influential guitarists made guitarists everywhere want to play like them, Eddie made people all around the world go out and buy a guitar.
Hendrix did all of this too, and even possibly tapping. Listen to Hear My Train A-Comin', live at the Atlanta Pop Festival, you'll hear it,
He popularized so many things: the whammy bar, harmonics tricks, tapping... he gave guitarists some of the coolest techniques in rock and metal.
He invented the solid body electric guitar. And a lot of other things, but that's all he needs to make this list.
He invented the les paul for crying out loud. He should be even higher
Y'all ever heard of another guitarist capable of incorporating elements of Bulgarian folk music into his guitar solos? I'm pretty sure you don't. And that's why my vote goes to master Zappa.
His tonal innovations are something which is very hard to achieve. He is the reason why it is so hard to make a U2 song sound right if anyone other than him plays it.
This man is a sonic genius
This is innovation guys... No one can ever play like Tom Morello... Listen to the riff of "guerrilla radio" and solo of "bulls on parade".. No doubt at all
Listening to him play is the only way to get an explanation of how good his innovations are.
Consensus. Definitively innovation in motion.
I personally think that he was more important than Dave or Ray Davies for guitar distortion. They used broken amps and power chord to create "hard rock" type of sound but Dick Dale's tremolo picking was far ahead than "You Really Got Me'. It was heavy, loud and fast. Brought the Arabian piece on fire.
Iommi could stand in 3rd place after Django Reinhardt and Hendrix.
The father of metal guitar. Enough said.
He might not have invented or popularized any techniques, but he sure did take Eddie Van Halen's works in a whole new direction. Vai made great innovations to many of the techniques made famous by Van Halen, especially whammy bar tricks and tapping. Even his tonal innovations are unbelievable.
He is the bridge between Steve Vai, Eddie Van Halen and all other blues guitarists. Enough said.
This guy can multitask like anything, he invented the technique to make the highest note on the guitar infinity.
He loses out to some of the other greats based on his lack of showmanship. He is always innovating (not just guitar). As a U2 fan I'm still blown away that The Edge is ahead of him. The Edge has created more boring guitar in the last 15 years than anybody. The last three albums are awful.
Should be #1, for everything he's done, not least of which is basically single-handedly creating progressive rock (and constantly pushing those boundaries since). Not to mention New Standard Tuning, Soundscapes, Frippertronics, etc.
Definitely part of the top 10 innovative guitarists. Or what is guitar innovation?
The only guitarist out the who can play lullabies one moment, then make computer sounds the next.
Should be in the top 5.
He literally invented playing solos on guitar! Before him, the guitarist was in the rhythm section and that was about it. Django should be #1 on the list just for that. But wait, there's more... He invented to play swing on guitar and he could «standardize» any song or classical music into jazz. Innovative? While having two fingers paralyzed, he had to create his own chords which are widespread today and essential to many many music. He was Duke Ellington's favorite musician. He gave Tony Iommi the will to retake the guitar after his dramatic accident where he lost (him too) the use of two fingers. OK, enough said... vote to raise Django up the list!
So innovative, he invented to play jazz on guitar. And with only two fingers running on the neck! By far, the greatest guitarist of all time.
Who else can play heavy metal on a classical background?
Nah, come on, the kind of neo classical should be higher!
His guitar playing helped create the foundation of rock n' roll guitar playing, an he was one of the first to make hard rock music out of a bluesy style of playing.
He should be higher on the list
Before him, people used the wah pedal to do funky things. And then Slash used it in Civil War.
The fact that he was not already in this list is entirely preposterous. I mean.. James Hetfield... Matt Bellamy. Jesus. Brian May was granted the opportunity to perform the national anthem on the roof of buckingham palace and he's not in TheTopTens' list of innovative guitarists. Listen to his arrangement of God Save The Queen (as well as his band's multi-platinum albums while you're at it). His popularising of multi-layering guitar parts was innovative enough to take a top three spot.
How jonny couldn't be there?
He is one of the most creative guitarists ever.
Sounds like no one else with a volume pedal, a delay or a looper and stereo reverb.
The godfather of most modern metal, wether you like it or not. There's not one metal band after 2000s not influenced by his style. Unfortunately not many do it as good as him. Also widely known for his whammy bar tricks like dime-squeal and souful yet face-melting solos.
Most overrated guitarist ever