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Who Is the Most Overlooked Guitar Hero?

Posted by Michael Mueller on June 1, 2011 at 10:10 AM

Yesterday, I was reading through my pal Joe Bosso's excellent new interview with Journey guitarist Neal Schon, and once again thought, "Why isn't this guy named in the same breath as Hendrix, Clapton, Page, and Van Halen?" Which in turn led me to think of other players who have had stellar careers and made a substantial impact on the guitar as we know it. The result is this short list of guitarists who you might call the "Other Guitar Heroes," even if they don't always get the love they deserve.

Which one of our elite eight do you think is the most overlooked guitar hero? Vote in the poll below!

8. David Gilmour
"Comfortably Numb." The Dark Side of the Moon. 'Nuff said!

7. Billy Gibbons
Before Stevie Ray Vaughan came along and made blues guitar cool again, Billy Gibbons was arguably the greatest white blues guitarist of all time—yes, even better (but certainly not whiter) than Johnny Winter.

6. Alex Lifeson
I guess that when you share the stage with arguably the greatest rock bassist and greatest rock drummer of all time, it's easy to see how you might be overlooked.

5. Neal Schon
Yeah, just go on with your "corporate rock" jokes. We'll continue to enjoy Schon's soaring, hypermelodic solos.

4. Steve Lukather
He wrote the main riff to Michael Jackson's "Beat It," has played on more A-list session dates than Yngwie Malmsteen's played arpeggios, and is a really cool dude. But apparently Toto isn't exactly the proper vehicle with which to reach the guitar god pantheon.

3. Steve Hackett
The former Genesis guitarist was tapping on the fretboard and sweep picking long before Eddie Van Halen and Yngwie Malmsteen turned those techniques into modern-day guitar-god prerequisites

2. Brian May
Sure, he created some of the most memorable guitar solos in rock history: "Bohemian Rhapsody," "Brighton Rock," "We Will Rock You," and "Killer Queen," to name just a few. But dude's an astrophysicist and he built his own iconic guitar, the "red special," out of wood from an 18th century fireplace when he was just 16 years old! Really, need we say more?

1. Gary Moore
Gary Moore has been dissed so many times in the guitar media he's earned the lifetime achievement award for being ignored. Check out the video below and tell me he's not one of the all-time greats! Would someone please give this man a cover?!?



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