Peter Frampton is most himself playing guitar in front of an audience of fans.

"When I play live, it's a whole other entity," he told UCR in 2021. "I walk on that stage, nobody advises me what to do whatsoever. I'm out there on my own. And I do my thing. That's me - at my best and uninhibited."

For close to 60 years, that's precisely what Frampton has been doing, delighting crowds as much with his technical ability as his charming stage persona.

After establishing himself as a musical force to be reckoned with as a member of Humble Pie, Frampton's fame and influence only skyrocketed. His landmark release Frampton Comes Alive! took the world by storm in 1976 and remains, to date, one of the best-selling live albums of all time. And the list of artists he's collaborated with both in studios and on the road over the years includes everyone from George Harrison to David Bowie, B.B. King to Steve Miller and countless more in between.

In 2024, Frampton received his very first Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nomination, despite being eligible since 1997. Frampton's response was, well, humble.

"I've had a storied career," he said to Vulture. "I've been up and down and up and down more times than a yo-yo. The Rock Hall has never been something where I've said to myself, I deserve this. I expect this. I'm not that kind of a person."

But UCR is. Here are five reasons the legendary guitarist belongs in the Rock Hall.

Peter Frampton Is an Underrated Guitarist

If you see a list of best rock guitarists without Frampton on it — which for some reason happens more often than you'd think — don't be swayed. He's undeniably one of the most technically skilled players to exist in rock, and his journey to guitar god started early. As a young man in Britain, Frampton saw various peers steer toward a style of playing influenced by Delta Blues artists — think Peter Green, Jimmy Page and Keith Richards — but he opted for a more blended mixture of jazz (Django Reinhardt), pop rock (the Shadows) and a bit of blues that set him apart. "I tried to put them together,” he said in 2021. "I think, because of my slightly different style, I think that's why people were drawn to my playing." (Not to mention the fact that he helped make famous the Talk Box.)


The Importance of Humble Pie Cannot Be Overlooked

Long before there was the Highwaymen or Traveling Wilburys or a number of other world-famous supergroups, there was Humble Pie, featuring Steve Marriott from Small Faces, Greg Ridley of Spooky Tooth, Jerry Shirley of the Apostolic Intervention and Frampton, who had formerly been a member of the Herd. Together, they blasted the British music scene with some of the most powerful hard rock it had seen up until that point. Though Frampton left the group after two years in 1971, he was a crucial part of their success, contributing guitar and vocals, and appearing on their seminal live album Performance Rockin' the Fillmore.

'Frampton Comes Alive!' Changed the Music Industry Practically Overnight

It's difficult to explain the level of impact 1976's Frampton Comes Alive! had on not only the world of rock 'n' roll, but on the entire recording industry. At the very beginning of 1976, Frampton was a respected, but still relatively unknown solo act. That all changed within a matter of weeks when Frampton Comes Alive! went to No. 1, spent 10 nonconsecutive weeks there and became the best-selling album of the whole year, a feat that neither he nor anyone else had expected. Or, in the words of Cameron Crowe: "It was like Peter was strapped to the nose cone of a rocket. They shot him out into space, he landed on the moon, he got off and there was nobody else there." As mentioned, the double LP remains one of the best-selling live albums of all time, which Frampton attributes to the palpable sense of enjoyment that runs through it — "you can feel it when you put the needle down or put the CD in."

READ MORE: Top 10 Peter Frampton Songs

His Resume of Collaborations Is Legendary

In 1970, when Frampton was just 20 years old and still a member of Humble Pie, he was invited to George Harrison's sessions for what would become All Things Must Pass. Though left uncredited, Frampton played acoustic guitar on a few tracks, but that was frankly just the beginning of his long and impressive resume of high profile collaborations. Among the people he's worked with: Ringo Starr, Stevie Wonder, Mick Jagger, John Entwistle, Don Felder, Dolly Parton and many more. There's a reason he's been trusted to contribute to so many projects.


Frampton Has Faced Hardship With Resilience and Grace

In 2019, Frampton revealed a diagnosis of inclusion body myositis (IBM), a degenerative muscular disease that prompted Frampton to launch a final tour. At that time, he planned to stick to studio work and smaller performances, but he soon realized his capabilities were still quite strong. So he launched more tour dates, the only difference being that he stayed seated on stage during his performances. It meant a slight shift in his playing style, but otherwise more of his favorite thing: playing live. "I thought, If I'm still able to play, why am I sitting at home?" he said to UCR in 2023. "I mean, I have to be honest ... it's different, my hands are not as strong, therefore, every note I play, for me, is more important, and I think I put more into each note now than I ever did, because of the predicament."

The Most Awesome Live Album From Every Rock Legend

Some of these concert recordings sold millions of copies, while others received little fanfare. Still, they remain the best of the best.

Gallery Credit: Corey Irwin