"He's a musical genius," Neil Young once said of Stephen Stills, his bandmate and co-lead guitarist in Buffalo Springfield and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Stills is one of rock's most underrated guitarists, possibly because of his well-established reputation as a singer-songwriter. Off and on for more than four decades, he has challenged and complemented Young's feral breaks with a Latin-and country-inflected chime, and as his soaring solos at the recent Buffalo Springfield reunion shows have illustrated, Stills has never lost his fervor for adventurous shredding. Such was his pull as a musician that he got both Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix (a close friend of Stills') to make guest appearances on Stills' 1970 self-titled solo debut – the only album in rock history to feature both guitar giants. "I like all of every aspect of performing," Stills has said. "But I really enjoy the hell out of just getting up there and burning on my guitar."
He is best associated with Gretsch guitars, especially the White Falcon. They produced the unique and recognisable sound that underpinned the Buffalo Springfield and CSNY recordings.