Steve Vai and Nuno Bettencourt react to Brian May being crowned greatest rock guitarist

(Image credit: Scott Heavey/Getty Images)

Earlier this week, we reported on Brian May being voted greatest rock guitarist of all time in a new Total Guitar poll.

And it seems like a number of other big-name electric guitar players agree wholeheartedly with the result.

After posting an image of the accompanying story from the new issue of Total Guitar on his Instagram page, May received some feedback from some of his guitar royalty peers.

“Congratulations @brianmayforreal,” wrote Nuno Bettencourt. “From the first note I heard you play, you’ve shaped my guitar and musical DNA.

“I would have never become the guitarist and more importantly composer I am without engulfing Queen and you, Brian. So, so blessed that we can listen to you anytime. Love you.”

The Extreme guitarist followed this up with a further social media post in tribute to his hero.

"You are the champion... my friend. I’m so happy for you getting your overdue praise," he enthused. "With respect to Total Guitar, you didn’t have to tell ME.

"You can talk top 100 all day. But us guitarists, even others on that list, know very well that there’s a short list of 4 or 5, the Mt. Rushmore of the superheroes that weren’t guitarists, but true visionaries who didn’t just influence us - anyone can do that. These guys, like Brian, reshaped the world’s internal DNA as guitar players."

Current "joint shifting" champ Steve Vai chimed in as well: “This is a totally appropriate recognition in my opinion. Congrats Bri. You will always be my hero.”

May, for his part, followed up with a second post on the poll, writing, “Still speechless! But I’m happy I can inspire such works in talented people. Keep swiping, folks, to share some gems - and sometimes I feel some of you artists know me in ways that I don’t know myself.

“Thanks for the lovely compliments.”

For more Brian May goodness and the full poll results, you can grab a copy of the new Total Guitar via My Favourite Magazines.

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Richard Bienstock

Rich is the co-author of the best-selling Nöthin' But a Good Time: The Uncensored History of the '80s Hard Rock Explosion. He is also a recording and performing musician, and a former editor of Guitar World magazine and executive editor of Guitar Aficionado magazine. He has authored several additional books, among them Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, the companion to the documentary of the same name.