If you’re a music fan, guitar player or not, you’ve probably got a favorite guitar player you just love listening to (and maybe even rocking your ‘air guitar’ to when no one’s looking). These are my top 5 favorite guitar players. Two things all these guitar players have in common is that they love using loads of effects and they are all groove based guitar players.
#5 – Jamie Hince (The Kills)
* Jamie Hince is a guitar player you’ve probably never heard about, but you need to. The sounds he gets out of his guitars are so interesting and unique. His band consists of him on guitar, Alison Mosshart (The Dead Weather) on vocals, and a drum machine. The effects he uses are so strange and create such a powerful, gritty, and hypnotic groove which drives the bands sound.
#4 – Wes Borland (Limp Bizkit)
* Before you completely dismiss my list for even mentioning Limp Bizkit, hear me out. I’ll be the first to admit their lyrics are completely brainless and display the lowest form of lyrical artistry – but Wes’s guitar playing is incredible if you love super heavy, high energy, groove based guitar work.
#3 – The Edge (U2)
* What I love most about The Edge is the gorgeous landscapes he creates with his signature delay sound. It’s undeniable that he has changed the sound of modern music with his trademark use of the delay pedal – just turn on the radio and everybody’s ripping it off. Ever since I first saw him with his Gibson Explorer I’ve wanted one, and thankfully that dream came true.
#2 – James ‘Munky’ Shaffer & Brian ‘Head’ Welch (Korn)
* Yes I know this ‘technically’ makes my list top ‘6’, but at Korn’s height when Welch was still with the band, these guys played as a single guitar player. They created such catchy grooves that you just couldn’t help but bounce your head to the music. Also using numerous effects pedals they created such strange and creepy sounds which defined the sound of the band.
#1 – Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine)
* By far my all time favorite guitar player is Tom Morello. From Rage Against the Machine to Audioslave to Street Sweeper Social Club – no one owns groove based rock like Morello. He’s used the same amp, effects pedals, and guitars for almost his whole career and he has created some of the most memorable and powerful riffs in the last 20 years. If you had never seen RATM live and you just listened to their sound, you’d swear they had a DJ with turntables – but it all comes from his guitar. It’s no surprise with how brilliant he is with a guitar that he is also a Harvard grad. It is absolutely ridiculous the kinds of sounds he is able to get with just a guitar, a few basic effects pedals, and an amp. Morello is a genius when it comes to playing a guitar.