King Edward

As I've mentioned before, I'm not a big fan of ranking musicians (or any creative endeavor) into "top 10" lists. The result is usually little more than bar-conversation fodder. If we all want to pretend that it's deep like discussing politics when you're half in the bag then, fine, we can call it "deep". Still, I couldn't let the fact that Eddie Van Halen won Guitar World's reader's poll go by unnoticed.

I am, unabashedly, a huge Van Halen fan. There probably isn't a day that goes by where I don't hum a part of some VH tune. Eddie has had a huge impact on my playing. Oddly, it's been such a huge impact that I've been trying to de-Eddie-ify my playing over the last few years for fear of just turning into an Eddie clone.

You may have a different #1 guitarist in your life. That's cool. I hope they inspire you as much as Ed has inspired me.