Which artists inspired you to play guitar ?

I think it was mostly these, in no particular order, but must've been around the same time (when I was 12-13 years):

Santana
Eric Clapton
Gary Moore
Mark Knopfler
James Hetfield & Kirk Hammett
 
Chuck Berry
B.B. King
Buddy Holly

Chuck Berry the most
His driving guitar in Johnny B Goode set my soul on fire!

I have to add John Cafferty
from the Movie Eddie & The Cruisers: Eddie Lives
The solo "Garden of Eden" spoke to me
I've watched that stupid movie a hundred times
When Eddie walks into the bar and judges the bass player, singer and the vexed young guitarist tell him to show him! this blues is killer lol!
 
Initially for me it was KISS and Ace Frehley that got me interested in guitar. Mostly because of the image. Then I got Van Halen II, and I had no idea how Edward got those sounds. I was super intrigued. But, the one song that made me want to learn guitar, just so that I could some day play it was Sultans Of Swing.
 
Allan Holdsworth, Jimmy Page, Tom Scholz, Andy Timmons are the top inspirations for me. I'll never play like them, but they endlessly inspire.

Holdsworth for that smooth, sustained solo tone he used to get. Page for mixing blues, folk and inventing his own amalgam. Scholz for that massive wall of electric guitar sound that touched off an era. Timmons for the tastiest, most beautiful compositions and solos.
 
When I first saw the Beatles on Ed Sullivan I was mesmerized - particularly by John Lennon and his Rickenbacker. I wanted an electric guitar immediately and discovered what I thought would be the dream guitar for me, a Sears Silvertone. Wanting and getting were two different things, though. Every time we'd go to Sears I'd head over to the where that guitar was displayed and drool, but I didn't have the money and my parents refused to get it for me. They did eventually get me a cheap acoustic guitar and signed me up for lessons, taught by possibly the worst music teacher ever. I already had been playing the trumpet for a few years, so had some musical abilities, but this guy had us strumming boring chords in 3/4 time, while I wanted to belt out She Loves You. I kept with it, though, in hopes that my magnificent musical talents would lead my parents to let me graduate to that Silvertone, but my father rather emphatically declared that I was in no way, shape or form going to get an electric guitar. (My parents were huge big band fans, and music that wasn't created by wind or bow just wasn't real music). I eventually lost interest in the guitar and continued on with playing various brass instruments in various organizations all the way through college.

Then, enter Steve Martin......yes, the actor/commedian - hear me out now. My college roommate, and fellow band mate, loved his comedy albums and grew to love his banjo playing. He decided to take up the banjo, and introduced me to the Earl Scruggs book which probably every bluegrass banjo artist started with. I got fairly proficient with the five-string and enjoyed playing it, but it's not something you can really gig with very much - not to mention the neighbors tiring quickly of my version of Foggy Mountain Breakdown.

Now enter Joe Bonamassa, who I've followed almost since he was tagging along with BB as a 12 year old. I'd always been drawn to Stevie, Jimmy Page, Duane Alman, and Gary Moore - that whole blues genre, but Joe was the one who sparked that thought that maybe I could play the guitar after all. Dude half my age inspiring me to play. Being somewhat proficient with the banjo made picking up the guitar easier than it might have been had I been a total beginner. The rest is history.......well, if you consider continuously trying to keep up with backing tracks and impulsively buying new gear in hopes of improvement history.
 
#1 first & foremost? The person from whom I got my middle name, Duane Allman. Yes, I have the greatest Dad in the entire world! 😁 he didn't know I'd end up learning to play guitar when he gave me that name 9 yrs & 11 months after Duane passed away, in September of '81. Though I'm sure he secretly hoped lol

An incredible player named Joseph Bythewood Jr aka JB Money. He was murdered a few years ago by his own son. Rest in Peace, JB.

Snowy White.
Alvin Lee.
David Gilmour
Maybe a few others
 
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