100 Greatest Guitarists

Find out who our panel of top guitarists and other experts picked

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Roger McGuinn
Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns95/100

95. Roger McGuinn

Roger McGuinn's sparkling, chordal 12-string Rickenbacker riffs on the Byrds' early hits were the sonic bridge between folk and rock – and an irreplaceable color in rock's palette: Every indie band who's more interested in beatific strumming than screaming solos owes him a debt (the striking break in "Bells of Rhymney" could be on a Smiths record). McGuinn could do a lot more than chime, however, as demonstrated by his still-astonishing psychedelic-raga-Coltrane licks on "Eight Miles High."

Key Tracks: "Mr. Tambourine Man," "Eight Miles High"

The Rolling Stone Interview: Roger McGuinn

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