A few years ago, the editors of Guitar World magazine compiled what we feel is the ultimate guide to the 100 Greatest Guitar Solos of All Time.
The list, which has been quoted by countless artists, websites and publications around the world, starts with Richie Sambora's work on Bon Jovi's “Wanted Dead or Alive” (100) and builds to a truly epic finish with Jimmy Page's solo on "Stairway to Heaven" (01).
To quote our "Stairway to Heaven" story that ran with the list, "If Jimmy Page is the Steven Spielberg of guitarists, then 'Stairway' is his Close Encounters."
In June, we kicked off a summer blockbuster of our own — a no-holds-barred six-string shootout. We pitted Guitar World's top 64 guitar solos against each other in an NCAA-style, 64-team single-elimination tournament. Every day, we asked you to cast your vote in a different guitar-solo matchup as dictated by the 64-team-style bracket. Now Round 1 has come and gone, leaving us with 32 guitar solo and 16 (sweet) matchups.
You can vote only once per matchup, and the voting ends as soon as the next matchup is posted (Basically, that's one poll per day).
In some cases, genre will clash against genre; a thrash solo might compete against a Southern rock solo, for instance. But let's get real: They're all guitar solos, played on guitars, by guitarists, most of them in some subset of the umbrella genre of rock. When choosing, it might have to come down to, "Which solo is more original and creative? Which is more iconic? or Which one kicks a larger, more impressive assemblage of asses?"
Winner: "Bohemian Rhapsody" (67.37 percent)
Loser: "Texas Flood" (32.63 percent)
Today's Round 2 Matchup (7 of 16)
"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" Vs. "Satch Boogie"
Once again, an Eric Clapton guitar solo finds itself up against a Joe Satriani guitar solo. In Round 1, Satriani's "Satch Boogie" (55) just barely edged out Cream's "Crossroads." In today's Round 2 shootout, "Satch Boogie" finds itself facing the Beatles' "While My Guitar Gently Weeps" (42), which (famously) features Clapton on lead guitar. Get busy! You'll find the poll at the very bottom of the story.
42. "While My Guitar Gently Weeps”
Soloist: Eric Clapton
Album: The Beatles—The Beatles (Apple, 1968)
55. "Satch Boogie”
Soloist: Joe Satriani
Album: Surfing with the Alien (Epic, 1987)
[[ When you're done voting, start learning every guitar solo in this poll — and more! Check out a new TAB book from Guitar World and Hal Leonard: 'The 100 Greatest Guitar Solos of All Time: A Treasure Trove of Guitar Leads Transcribed Note-for-Note, Plus Song Notes for More Than 40 of the Best Solos.' It's available now at the Guitar World Online Store for $29.99. ]]