Best Rock Songs
Everyone has a list of his or her best rock songs with there being so many to choose from. With over 50 years of great tunes to choose from, making a list is no easy task. But try using this list to make your own and you’ll see how much fun finding new songs or listening to old favorites can be.
- “Stairway to Heaven” -Lead Zeppelin. It tricks you into believing it’s a ballad before letting loose into a rolling 70’s rock anthem. Once the guitar licks come and the banging on the drums starts, you know you’re experiencing real rock n’ roll magic. Besides, any song that has as much history and myth surrounding it as this one has to be one the best rock songs ever. Just don’t play it backwards.
- “Don’t Fear the Reaper” -Blue Oyster Cult. A bit off the beaten path, this rock song has a style all its own. Whispy vocals, harmonizing, and a catchy melody help to make it one of the best rock songs. Heavily influenced by the Vietnam War, the song spoke to social causes and managed to sound great at the same time.
- “Smells Like Teen Spirit” -Nirvana. The birth of a legend. Kurt Cobain. Nirvana. This song also gave rise to the popularity of the 90’s “Grunge” movement. It’s one of the best rock songs because it has a garage band sound, more than capable drumming, and Cobain’s raspy voice.
- “I Love Rock and Roll” -Joan Jett and The Blackhearts. Who doesn’t love this song? Jett’s raspy vocals combine punk with rock to belt out this anthem to to the world’s best music. You can’t help but sing along to the words whether you love rock and roll or not.
- “Purple Haze” -Jimi Hendrix. The left handed master plays his guitar perfectly through this song. There is simply no debate on this one. If you don’t know why this song is on a list of the best rock songs, then you need to give it another listen.
- “Gimme Shelter” -The Rolling Stones. Mick and Keith really did their thing on this 1969 track. Not to mention the woman singing background vocals. Soulful guitar picking, harmonica playing and those scratchy vocals make this one of the best rock songs to ever hit the airwaves. Also influenced by the Vietnam War, it proves music can mean something and still sound amazing at the same time.
- “Break on Through (to the other side)” -The Doors. The warbled 60’s sound of this iconic rock song is one of the best by Jim Morrison and company. Organ in a rock song you say? Heck yes. This ode to hallucinogenic freedom is a classic.
- “Free Bird” -Lynyrd Skynard. The slide guitar works its way through this song in hypnotizing fashion. It’s a guitar lover’s fantasy that masquerades as a country rock warbler. Up until the end that is. That’s when one of the longest and most awesome rock guitar solo’s ever is unleashed on your ears.
- “Alive” -Pearl Jam. This song became an anthem for a generation and introduced the world to Eddie Vedder, one of the best vocalists in rock music. The bass driven song made the “power ballad” a radio staple at the time and one of the best rock songs ever recorded. As a concert favorite, this song continues to fill arenas and please loyal fans.
- “Tom Sawyer” -Rush. From the synthesized opening all the way through this haunting tune, you wonder just what it’s all about. It doesn’t matter because the musical artistry speaks for itself. One of the biggest hits by this band, it signaled a turning point in their evolution from pure rock to electronic infused, symphonic arrangements. Neil Peart’s phenomenal drumming helps to make this one of the best rock songs around.