Back before the new year started, I mentioned that the Rolling Stone list of 100 Greatest Guitarists has some problems. For example, the 2018 review of that list has Eddie Van Halen ahead of Stevie Ray Vaughn. (Van Halen definitely sold more records, but I’m not sure that means he’s better at playing the guitar.)
Today we look at another one of those problems. An error of omission.
Steve Howe was the guitar player for the Progressive Rock band Yes, during their recording of The Yes Album and Fragile and Close to the Edge. He had a solo career, and he reunited with some of the guys from Yes in the 1990s for a separate project. He is not included in the list from Rolling Stone. He wasn’t included in 2018’s revamp of the list. Here’s a sample of his playing, so you can see for yourself if you agree. Even if this is an acoustic song, you could chose just about any song off that album and there would be a bit of guitar to catch your attention somewhere.
This song is “Mood for a Day” by Yes from the 1971 album Fragile. Actually it is all Steve Howe.
I mean, consider that Rick Wakeman was the keyboard player for Yes during the time Howe was the guitar player, and you can begin to see how his absence from that list makes people scream. (I mean, do you think Rick Wakeman would have been working with a putz?)