Angus Young named ahead of Tommy Emmanuel and Cold Chisel's Ian Moss in the poll by Australian Guitar magazine. Photo: Ben Rushton
AGEING schoolboy Angus Young has topped the class again, the AC/DC axeman being voted the best Australian guitarist of all time in a poll conducted by Australian Guitar Magazine.
In a highly scientific survey of Australia's musical terrain, three ''guitar-playin' guitar-player lovers'' fretted over the nation's string-pickers to come up with a definitive list of the top 50. Music writers Peter Hodgson, Andrew P. Street and Craig White apparently troubled themselves less with matters of origin (Young was born in Scotland), genre (runner-up Tommy Emmanuel is a finger-picking acoustic man, sixth placegetter Slava Grigoryan a classical player), and gender (just two women make the list) than with what sounds good to their ears.
Highly subjective, perhaps, but guaranteed to spark a debate - and that's precisely what lists like this are all about.
Top 10 Australian guitarists
1. Angus Young of AC/DC. Photo: Edwina Pickles
Cold Chisel's guitarist Ian Moss was third. Having recently survived a mauling at the hands (or rather jaws) of the family cat, he can count himself lucky still to be around to hear the good news.
Less fortunate was anyone whose career began in the past decade or so. Of the top 10, one cut his first record in the 1960s (Ross Hannaford of Daddy Cool), seven in the 1970s (Young, Emmanuel, Moss, Rick Brewster of The Angels, Deniz Tek of Radio Birdman, Jim Moginie of Midnight Oil and Lobby Loyde of Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs) and two in the 1990s (Grigoryan and Chris Cheney of The Living End).
Presumably musicians from the past 15 years or so will have to wait for the list of the 50 greatest samplers of all time for their chance at glory.
The 40 players outside the top 10 were not ranked, which means the opportunities to debate the relative merits of Orianthi versus Charlie Owen are endless. Rather like some of the riffs.
What do you think of the top 10? Who is your favourite Australian guitarist of all time? Have your say here.
Australian Guitar Magazine’s Definitive Top Ten Australian Guitarists of All Time
- Angus Young (ACDC)
- Tommy Emmanuel
- Ian Moss (Cold Chisel)
- Chris Cheney (The Living End)
- Rick Brewster (The Angels)
- Slava Grigoryan (Slava Grigoryan)
- Deniz Tek (Radio Birdman, The Visitors)
- Jim Moginie (Midnight Oil)
- Lobby Loyde (Billy Thorpe and The Aztecs)
- Ross Hannaford (Daddy Cool)
11 to 40 (not ranked)
Malcolm Young (ACDC)
Adalita (Magic Dirt)
Mick Harvey (Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds & Grinderman)
Tim Rogers (You Am I)
Rowland S Howard (Boys Next Door, Birthday Party)
Ed Kuepper (The Saints, Laughing Clowns, Black Ticket Day)
Spencer P Jones (The Johnnys, Beasts of Bourbon, Spencer P Jones)
Gareth Liddiard (The Drones, Gareth Liddiard)
Brad Shepherd (The Hitmen, Hoodoo Gurus, The Monarchs)
John Butler (John Butler Trio)
Jeff Lang (Jeff Lang and Chris Whitney)
Kim Salmon (The Scientists, Beasts of Bourbon)
Ash Naylor (Even, Rail)
Tom Lyncolgn (The Nation Blue)
Paul Dempsey (Something for Kate, Paul Demspey)
Jim Skiathitis (The Atlantics)
Blackie (The Hard Ons)
Billy Thorpe (Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs)
Dutch Tilders (Dutch Tilders)
Orem Ambarchi (Orem Ambarchi)
Dave Hole (Dave Hole)
Kevin Borich (Kevin Borich)
Charlie Owen (The New Christs, Beasts of Bourbon, The Divinyls, Tex Perkins and the Dark Horses)
Pete Wells (Rose Tattoo)
Frank Gambale (Chick Corea Electrik Band)
Brett Garsed (John Farnham, Nelson, TJ Helmerich)
Diesel (Mark Lizotte) (Diesel, Johnny Diesel and the Injectors)
Daniel Johns (Silverchair)
Darren Middleton (Powderfinger)
John Williams (John Williams)
Jona Weinhofen (I Killed The Prom Queen)
Joe Robinson (Joe Robinson)
Michael Fix (Michael Fix)
Phil Emmanuel (Phil Emmanuel)
Keith Urban (Keith Urban)
C W Stoneking (C W Stoneking)
Lloyd Spiegel (LLoy Spiegel)
Geoff Achison (The Souldiggers)