Two of ‘Rolling Stone’s’ 100 Greatest Guitarists Are Women


Oh boy, Rolling Stone. We know you guys are out of touch, and we sure do try to cut you some slack for that. But when you make a list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time, and only two of those people are women? (Bonnie Raitt at #89 and Joni Mitchell at #75.) How are we supposed to respond? In all fairness, the blame doesn’t fall solely on the magazine’s writers: Although a few of them voted on the list, the jury was made up mostly of actual famous guitarists — Keith Richards, Carlos Santana, Thurston Moore, J Mascis. The panel itself only included four women (Melissa Etheridge, Marnie Stern, Nancy Wilson, and Susan Tedeschi), which might partially explain why the results were so skewed.

Of course, the list is already being nitpicked. At Stereogum, they’ve suggested a few oversights, but they’re all dudes, too. So, let’s play this game for a minute, shall we? Aside from the ladies on the voting panel, all of whom would have made good picks for the list, which other women should have been considered? How about Joan Jett, Tanya Donelly, Carrie Brownstein, Lita Ford, Ani DiFranco, Poison Ivy, Kaki King, Dolly Parton, Etta Baker, Donita Sparks, Wanda Jackson, PJ Harvey… And that’s just off the top of our head! Add your picks in the comments, and if you’re still depressed, check out the list Marnie Stern made for us last year of her favorite female guitarists.