I must say a massive sorry to all you drummers out there (myself included). You (and I) have spent years perfecting ghost notes, flams, a hectic two-stroke roll, and controlled sticking but all to little avail: it’s the guitarists that the girls want after all. That’s right. Although we’ll never be looked on with as much indifference as a roadie or looked straight through as much as the bassists, drummers simply can’t compete with a talented lead guitarist’s soul-stirring arpeggios and perfect command of the fretboard. This is just a fact of music, nay: a fact of life in general. To those that are embittered by this fact, you obviously got into playing your instrument for all the wrong reasons, but for lead guitarists, this is news of utmost excellence. So what weapon do you lead guitarists like to shred with? I’ve known many guitarists over the years and each is convinced that a particular make and model of guitar is the work of the musical gods while all other guitars can go to hell and burn for eternity. For this reason, I’m not making a top ten of guitars in rank order, but rather a list of guitars and makes that are equally as impressive as each other, and the losers are, well, the guitars that don’t make it on the list.
- Fender Stratocaster
- Gibson Les Paul
- Fender Telecaster
- Gibson ES-335
- BC Rich Warlock
- Gibson SG
- Ibanez Prestige
- Gibson Flying V
- Ibanez RG331M
- Gibson Explorer
Oh my yes. This was an obvious choice for this list not only because of the guitar’s iconic status but because goddamnit, it just sounds so ridiculously good. The obvious choice for those embarking upon a career in rock, or for those that just love a guitar that feels incredible and light in the hands. Are you going to argue with the likes of Hendrix and Clapton, who were (and in the case of Clapton, still are) proponents of this wonderful musical masterpiece? No, I didn’t think so, and you’re an idiot if you do. You know those musical albums full of wailing guitar melodies that tug at your heart and soul? Well this is the guitar that gently weeps as its players twang out some of the greatest-sounding melodies of all time.
Ahh, the Les Paul. Everyone in school dreamed about owning one of these, and though there were many copies, they didn’t hold a candle to the real thing. This is the guitar that Zakk Wylde played Speedball on, and is/was also used by Neil Young and Jimmy Page among others. The smooth sound makes it superior to the inferior Epiphone version and it is made in the united states of ‘murica. Most people don’t need another reason to buy one, particularly Americans.
In my opinion, this is the best-sounding guitar of all time. While its two-pickup setup doesn’t have the versatility of the Stratocaster, this guitar has a sound that can be picked out from literally thousands of others. There’s something beautiful about the slightly muted distortion that makes bands like the Strokes so iconic. Keith Richards, Jeff Buckley and Joe Strummer were all users as well, so it is hard to argue with the popularity and quality of this axe.
A Semi –acoustic? Really? Well, yes in fact, this guitar deserves a place in the top ten because there’s nothing like the sound of a semi-acoustic guitar that is perfect for blues and even for rock, as Dave Grohl demonstrates. Dare you argue with the ex-Nirvana drummer and guitarist/singer for the Foo Fighters? Thought so.
This guitar has an extremely distinctive shape with many sharp edges and is a guitar that I once desired. Though I can’t imagine it being comfortable to wear, this guitar has a chunky sound when distortion is applied making it perfect in sound and appearance for metal and heavier music
The SG standard is the best-selling Gibson of all time and it isn’t difficult to see why. Its slightly off-symmetrical body is wonderful to look at and the sound is just as sweet.
Ibanez deserves to be on this list, and what better model to represent the talent of this make than the Prestige? The shape is synonymous with the name Ibanez and has one of the most unique distorted sounds out there. Though Van Halen has used the Destroyer model, Ibanez’s in general are great guitars to own and a extremely versatile in nature
Yet another iconic shape to squeeze into the list. Though I can’t say I enjoy the guitar’s sound very much, you can’t deny that it is one of the more recognisable guitars out there.
Another guitar, another Ibanez. This was introduced fairly recently as a limited edition but persists due to its greatness. I love the bright orange colour, but I’m sure some people enjoy the fact that it sounds wonderful as well.
Oh James Hetfield, how I dislike you and your band’s ridiculousness concerning musical copyright infringement and such. Can’t argue with the choice of guitar though, which is synonymous with rock and metal players around the world.