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Wednesday 29 Oct 2014

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Former Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist voted greatest guitarist of past 30 years by 6 Music listeners

John Frusciante, the former guitarist with Red Hot Chili Peppers has topped a poll by listeners of digital radio station BBC 6 Music to find the "Axe Factor", the best guitarist of the last 30 years.

As announced on tonight's Steve Lamacq show from 4.00-7.00pm, by Steve and Breakfast show presenter Shaun Keaveny, Frusciante played on classic albums including Blood Sex Sugar Magik and Californication. Frusciante, who left the band in December 2009, beat strong competition from Guns 'n' Roses guitarist Slash, Muse frontman Matt Bellamy and The Smiths' legendary strummer Johnny Marr to top the station search for the contemporary guitarist who listeners considered to have the "Axe Factor".

A rifftastic 30,424 listeners voted online from a list of 40 guitarists:

Steve, who was this week nominated for a Sony Radio Academy award, commented: "You have to be a little unhinged to be a true guitar hero. There's an underlying madness about their work, but with the renewed interest in these guitarists, thanks to various computer games, this is a very timely and revealing litmus test of who our audience really admire."

The full top ten:

1. John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
2. Slash (Guns 'n' Roses)
3. Matt Bellamy (Muse)
4. Johnny Marr (The Smiths)
5. Tom Morello (Rage Against The Machine)
6. Kirk Hammett (Metallica)
7. Jonny Greenwood (Radiohead)
8. Prince
9. Jack White (White Stripes)
10. Peter Buck (REM)

Shaun Keaveny said of Frusciante: "His range, from minimalist melody lines, through choppy Hendrixian chord voicings, all the way up to eleven with wailing metal tinged blues, gives him the edge over many in the list. For that I salute him."

Paul Rodgers, Editor, BBC 6 Music, comments: "6 Music listeners are passionately devoted to the art of music. We gave them a chance to vote for guitar heroes from recent memory and I'm delighted that they responded by voting in their thousands to decide who is their king of the frets."

Budding musicians can watch guitar tutorials on the 6 Music website from Huey Morgan and Tom Robinson on

6 Music received seven nominations in the Sony Radio Academy Awards 2010 this week for presenters Lauren Laverne (Best Music Programme and Music Radio Personality of the Year), Steve Lamacq and Huey Morgan (Music Broadcaster of the Year) and Adam and Joe (Best Comedy), for Best Station Imaging, and for Steve Levine (Best Programme Contributor).


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