The greatest guitar solo of all time chosen in a new poll by Total Guitar magazine

What is the greatest guitar solo of all time? It's guaranteed to ignite fierce pub debates amongst music lovers (if we could go to pubs right now) but it's easier if we just let democracy decide for us – enter the experienced adjudicator Total Guitar (opens in new tab) and its new issue's rundown of the 50 greatest guitar solos of all time.

Total Guitar

(Image credit: Future)

And the winner is… Brian May's solo on Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody (opens in new tab). The British treasure beat David Gilmour (opens in new tab), Jimmy Page and late legend Eddie Van Halen (opens in new tab) to top the readers' choice. And May's reaction was typically classy…

“The Greatest Guitar Solo of All Time ?!!" he wrote on Instagram. "Wow ... (gulp) ... BIG thanks, all yous very kind Total Guitar readers !!! I am not worthy, but it’s much appreciated.”

A post shared by Brian Harold May (@brianmayforreal) (opens in new tab)

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And last year May was kind enough to share a guitar lesson with fans on how to play the solo on Instagram…

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A photo posted by on

Don't fancy the solo? Total Guitar has you covered with the song's iconic riff. 

For the rest of the 50 Greatest Solos Of All Time, check out the new issue of Total Guitar (opens in new tab)

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar. I've currently set aside any pipe dreams of getting anywhere with my own songs and I am enjoying playing covers in function bands.