At last the wait is over and we can reveal the results of our Great Rock Guitarist Debate 2005.  Due to the huge quantity of results we enlisted the assistance of the Zimbabwe Election Council in order to secure a fair result.  Over the last month it seems like the internet traffic has doubled every day for this poll.  The results certainly came in thick and fast.  Our man on the scene at the mainframe collection office is the legendary former editor of The Catholic Herald, Jeff Barton  "We thought the 2004 debate was intense, but this year, without doubt, we've had the most critical debate in rock history.  We've had over 50,000 votes cast.  It's quite complicated as this year it was decided to utilise the Proportional Representation System advocated by the Liberal Democratic party.  Mostly this was introduced because of complaints by Steve Vai fans last year that there wasn't a fair enough overall representation as they felt Steve often registered as a 2nd favourite.  The results have been verified by the Zimbabwean Election Monitoring Commission who have flown in especially for the month.  The counting began at midnight on October 1st.  The results took just 6 hours to come through, amazing.  We're going to list every guitarist who has polled over 1% of the vote."


First off then, the winner again is the incomparable Ritchie Blackmore.  Even though our Ritchie hasn’t hardly played any rock since the mid 90’s, he is still rated as the best of the bunch.  Well done Ritchie!


We tried to get an interview with Ritchie, however he was unavailable for comment due to recording commitments.


Here are the results in full....



% of Vote

Fan Comments

Ritchie Blackmore


"Simply, you are a Guitar God".
Moritz von der Weide and Jim Brodie

Stevie Ray Vaughan


“Missed but never forgotten. Without doubt, the greatest player of all time. A technical genius”
Giovanni - Milan


Jeff Beck


“My favourite player, who never fails to impress.. Hi Ho Silver Lining still rocks after all these years”
P Cottrel – Fort Worth, Texas


Steve Morse


“I thought the world would end when you left Deep Purple. Come back, all is forgiven”
A. Koenig:  Offenbach, DE


Jimi Hendrix


“An inspiration to every player, no matter what style of music you follow”
Quaila Manbuphf - South Africa


Eric Clapton


“The Riffs Master – enough said”
T. Perkins – Cannock, Staffs


Dave Gilmour


“Great Player, but what a tight sod. I wish he’d be a bit more generous with his cash”
Chris Bond - London


Jimmy Page


"Sadly missed, you’ll never be forgotten”
Al – Vancouver, Canada


Randy Rhodes


“We’re all on a Crazy Train – you are the man, and you always will be”
Zak Richards – Fresno, CA


Eddie van Halen


“For heavens sake, I wish you’d use a plectrum. I could  lend you one if you’re so desperate"
Mezza – Rio, Brazil


Brian May


“Full chunky riffs and a full chunky head of hair – what a  player!”
British Hairdressing Association


Joe Satriani


“You are truly awful, but compared to Steve Vai,  you’re a mega rock god. In view of this, you get my  vote” 
The Dragon-UK


Yngwie Malmsteen


“I can dissimilate your playing, but I cannot  dissimilate you name”
Christoph – St. Petersberg


Gary Moore


I’ve been following you since Bradford 1979. I looked up at you from the front row and you drenched me with sweat – I haven’t bathed since.
Mavis Higginbottom, Pudsey

Angus Young


“He can play on two strings what Ritchie Blackmore  would need six for. Come to think of it, Angus only  uses two strings – aaaaargghhhhh!”
Shane McGrath,Sydney,Aus


Mike Oldfield


“My all time hero; your technique is indestructible”
Adachi, Tokyo





“Since you left the music biz, a large void has been created. Come back quickly, rock guitar needs you”
Darrell Ponting - Aylesbury


Pete Townsend


“Yes indeed!"
Mark Connolly - Halifax

John Williams


“For once, I’d wish you’d plug into a Marshall and blow them all away”
Connell – Vienna, AU


Tony Iommi



“Why is the rock press always taking about Lemmi when they should be talking Lommi!  I’m your biggest fan, ever; I’ll never forget you on top of Buckingham Palace”
Brad, Charlotte, NC, US


Alex Lifeson


“The greatest ever – I’m in no Rush (ho-ho) to listen to anyone else”
Persia, Nice, France


The Edge


“Just like his name, he plays on the edge – speed, skill and taste, sets you aside from any other player I’ve heard”A O Flattery, Perth Aus

Jan Cyrka


“What a nose; forget about the playing; what a corker!  How did you fit on stage with that appendage?”
Carl, Halifax UK


Rickey Medlocke


 Donnington 1980 – the greatest day of my life. Your playing was an an inspiration”
Connaugh,  Flushing, NL



To comment on our Greatest Guitarist 2005 Poll please email us: we'll be posting some feedback on this site shortly


A short selection of Peoples contributions follow: Favourite guitarists are in black type, least favourite in red type.




John Blackburn

Curt Cobain

Curt was bloody awful, can't understand the fuss

Ivan Dwiddlewright

Joe Satriani

Ritchie Blackmore

What is it with you guys. Why do you hate Joe Satriani so much. Surely it can't be just because he is American. I have put Ritchie as my least favourite guitarist just to partly wind you up, but also because I just cannot understand what is so good about "Smoke on the water" anyway. It's only 4 notes! Big deal. Joe could play around 500 notes in the time it takes your Ritchie to play that bloody riff. I've given the website a crap mark as well. Serves you right!

Smashed Executive

Frank Zappa

Zappa - could play the tits off an aging whore and still be inventive


Jan Akkerman
The Edge
Tommy Lommi

I like Jan, he has great muscles in his fingers.
The Edge always plays like his name - on the Edge
Tommy Lommi has never done anything for me - I like work he does with Free but not Black Sabbath

Half AC Klarke

Mike Oldfield

Joe Satriani

There is really only one great guitarist in my book and that's Mike Oldfield. You have to really watch is odd fingering techniques and strange tonal qualities that he produces from the guitar. He is the best.
I would however agree that Satriani is just God awful

Jethro Tull

Jim Brodie

having witnessed what can only be called the biggest joke in history (aka. Adalangst live) their can only be one choice as to the worst guitarist. It was the worst guitar playing i have ever heard and the only time in the gig that anything vaguely musical left Brodies guitar was when his wig fell over his eyes!!!

[Editors note: although we allow any comments on this site, our solicitors are examining this entry and will be in contact with Jethro shortly]

Robert the Bruce

Hamish Stuart
Stuart Hamish
Ritchie Blackmore

Hamish from the Average White Band, in Dundee, a Scottish band, is brill.
Stuart is actually also from Dundee, the trash metal band "Nooooo" (as in Och the Nooo) and is ace, although I've never really heard him play due to the complete din at the gigs.
Oh, and Ritchie is just sooo overrated, what's the matter with you guys?


Bill Clinton

Bill on my hate list. useless on Sax and worse on guitar

Karen West

Jeff West

Eric Clapton

Joe Satriani

Jeff West is my big brother and he's really great.
After that I like Eric, especially his "Apache" record
I don't really know Joe Satriani, but as you guys don't like him, he gets my "no" vote.

Ralf Wrenger

Ritchie Blackmore
Steve Morse

Ritchie is God, nothing more to say really.
Morse is OK too when playing with Purple!

David Pickles

Steve Morse

Steve Morses’s Dog

The Guitarist in Candice Night

You can't be a God Of Guitar in Green Tights


Pete Townsend
Jeff Beck
Steve Vai

Townsend is so underrated
Beck also has that underground following
Vai is just twiddly crap


Eddie Hazel

David Gilmour

Eddie Van Halen

Eddie Hazel has the touch of Hendrix and Gilmour has great taste. Both of these players know what/when to play and what/when not to play.


Ritchie Blackmore

John Sykes

Angus Young

always been a huge fan of ritchie.
john sykes has been rather good for the last 20 years
with thin lizzy, whitesnake, blue murder,and solo.
never liked a riff angus ever came up with.

iain culross

Ritchie Blackmore: john petrucci

 justin hawkins

blackmore is god.
petrucci is probably the greatest around today, but no one will ever surpass ritchie blackmore.
justin hawkins is a tosser who can't play shit, but talks a lot of it.
`nuff said.

Perttu Huovila

Ritchie Blackmore: Yngwie Malmsteen

Yngwie Malmsteen, who really listens to him and his Lightning speed" shit? Ritchie is my ultimate guitar hero, yngwie on the other hand is just trying to be a cheap copy of him.


Randy  Rhoads


Randy Rhoads had amazing technically ability and invented neo classical shredding and influenced such players as
Yngwie Malmsteen, George Lynch, Warren DeMartini, Jake E. Lee, Joe Holmes, Doug Aldrich, Rowan Robertson, Zakk Wylde and every single Neo Classical shredder ever.

I don't like Slash because he's not good and very overrated as his leads are simple as can be, he ran out of riffs after the first album, He's not innovative, He's not creative...quite simply he's not good.


Ritchie Blackmore

Yngwie Malmsteen

He simply is (or was?) the best guitarist in the world. Fast hands and everything, you know


Stevie Ray Vaughan

Jimi Hendrix:

Joe Satriani

Stevie Ray in my eyes is a complete genius. He has such an understanding and appreciation for the beauty that is the blues and there is nothing i love more than sitting around just listening to him play. And those who say that Hendrix is overrated don't take the time to realize that he was the originator of great guitar music. Before Hendrix there was nothing that sounded anything similar to Hendrix, and today there are people that can play better than he did but the man invented distortion and found the beauty in feedback and how to play with sounds. He stuck nails into his amp to create distortion that wasn't some effect that he just clicked on and off. The man was amazing and there is no questioning that. I think people dispute this because they enjoy saying that everyone else is wrong.


Ritchie Blackmore

Come on now...Ritchie (according to the Purple Passages liner notes) turned 64 this year....(others say he's 60 this year) Does your Grandpa rock like Ritchie? with age his playing has improved. Vai, Satriani...half his age and you don't hear Ritchie imitating them or stealing their licks now do you? Give Blackmore the credit he deserves for turning us all on to some classy playing. Those comments about his most recent stint with Purple MkII many times can you play "smoke" and still get excited? And from what I hear Gillian's a hard bloke to get along with...Give him credit for Candice too...pretty hot for a '64 yr old to bag! 0~;P
(No Ritchie...It aint' Purple!)

Southern Comfort

Don Barnes
Rickey Medlocke
Keith Richards

I picked Don Barnes of 38 special because the guy is dam good. Him and Rickey Medlocke never get recognized on these list. The only reason I picked Kieth Richards for least favourite is because he is way over rated. Don't get me wrong he is good but I have never heard him rippen it up like Eddie Van Halen,Jeff Carlsi,Stevie Ray Vaughn or a country boy like Brad Paisley. What he plays is good but he's not in the same league with some of them other guys.


Django Reinhardt
 Egberto Gismonti
 Joe Satriani

Ritchie Blackmore needs a smack in the face

To comment on our Greatest Guitarist 2005 Poll please contact us we'll be posting some feedback on this site shortly