Top lists are inherently biased due to their subjective nature, which is why they’re not all equal, sometimes unfair, and often despised. We tried to strike a fair balance and remain as objective as possible, but we expect you’ll comb through our list with no less criticism. What you won’t find here are two Radiohead guitarists occupying positions on the list ahead of legends such Eddie Van Halen, Johnny Winter and Angus Young, or any other hipster nonsense that betrays a Freudian preoccupation with the 90’s. So keep an open mind and check out the list to see if you agree with our selections.
50. Andrés Segovia
Though he’s often overlooked on all the major top guitarist lists we’ve come across, Segovia is unquestionably the most famous ambassador of classical guitar and has easily earned a spot on ours. Born in Linares, Spain in 1893, Segovia actively performed and taught for nearly 8 decades, leaving behind a large body of work and producing group of talented classical guitarists known as the Students of Segovia who have carried on his legacy. Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top (#22 on our list) placed Segovia at #7 on his MusicRadar list of 10 guitarists that blew his mind. Gibbons said of Segovia, “There’s another world of guitar playing to explore here. It would be fair to shed light on some of the accomplishments that Andrés Segovia’s hands would bring forward.” Segovia’s baroque works, much like that of classical composer Johann Sebastian Bach, played a large and obvious influence on the style of Golden Age of Metal in the 1980s.