Top 10 Rock Songs of All Time

The song that your grandparents would jive to, and now you are jiving as well. As if the legacy of these songs is being passed down from generation to generation. This is the reason why The Beatles are still popular today. They made history and history repeats. Thus, we are repeating the history by not only listening to them, but also jamming. There are other bands and legendary singers too who created history. The rock era talked about the situations of its time, the confusions, the mysticism, the political scenario etc.


  • Jailhouse Rock by Elvis Presley(1957) –  Written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller and became an instant hit after its release. Till date the song is categorised in the list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”, “Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Sons That Shaped Rock and Roll”. The interesting fact of this song is that some the characters named in this song are real people like the famous musician from L.A., Shifty Henry; The Purple Gang was real mob; Sad Sack was an U.S. army nickname in World War II for a loser and many more.
  • Hey Jude by The Beatles (1970) – Written by Paul McCartney, this song was believed to have been written to comfort John Lennon’s son Julian during the divorce of his parents. This song was the first single record from The Beatle’s record label – Apple Records. The song was nominated for the Grammy Awards in 1969 in The Record of the year, Song of the year, Best performance by a Duo or Group. Unfortunately, it won none of them. The song ranked 4th in the list of “100 Greatest Singles.”
  • Like a Rolling Stone by Bob Dylan (1965)  – Written by the American singer-songwriter Bob Dylan, this song was composed after Dylan returned from his tour of England. He was apparently unhappy by the expectations of the public from him and was worried about the direction his career was taking. The theme that revolved around this song was not of love, but deep resentment and the craving for vengeance. A noted critic once quoted this song as “a chaotic amalgam of blues, impressionism, allegory …”
  • Imagine by John Lennon  (1971)  – Written and sang by American the American musician John Lennon, the song ranked 3rd in the list of “500 Greatest Songs of All Time.”  The song was inspired by a three line instructional poem called “Cloud Piece” which appeared in Yoko Ono’s book “Grapefruit” in 1964. The song has always been considered as the most influential song all time.
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana (1991) – Composed by Kurt Cobain, Krist Novoselic, and Dave Grohl, the song ranked 6th in the Billboard Hot 100. Kurt Cobain once said that he wrote the song because he was all time inspired by the style of the Pixies – a band he greatly admired. The listeners often found it difficult to understand the meaning of the song because of the nonsensical wordings and Cobain’s harsh voice. In the year 2000, the song was published in the Guinness Book of World Record for the most played video in MTv Europe.
  • Hotel California by Eagles (1977) – Released in February, by the same album name, this was considered as one of the best songs of the album orient rock era. The lyrics were written by Don Felder, Don Henley and Glenn Frey. The song had topped the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart for a week in 1977. The Eagles describe the song to be their “interpretation of a high life in Los Angeles.”
  • Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin (1971) – Composed by guitarist Jimmy Page and vocalist Robert pant, the song is considered as one of the greatest hits of all time. Running 8 minutes and two seconds, it initially starts off with like an acoustic type folk song and then slowly culminates into hard rock. Music Journalist Stephen Davis said, “although the song was released in 1971, it took two years for the song to gain popularity…truly ascended to the anthemic status…”.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen (1975) – Written by Freddie Mercury for the band, this particular has no chorus. Since its release, it was a huge success and topped the UK Singles charts for nine weeks. Post Mercury’s death, it became the third best selling single. New York Times had commented, “the song’s most distinct feature is the fatalistic lyrics”. The song went on to win plenty of awards and was tagged by the British Phonographic Industry as the best British Single of the period -1952- 1977.
  • You Really Got Me by Kink (1964) – Written by Ray Davies, the song was the band Kink’s third single. It was an early hit song and was considered very powerful, for its use of the guitar chords. In the year 2009, it was ranked 57th of the Greatest Hard Rock Songs by VH1.
  • While My Guitar Gently Weeps (1968) – Originally written by George Harrison, it was recorded by The Beatles in 1968 for their eponymous double album often called The White Album. Harrison was inspired to write this song while reading the I Ching. Harrison had once said, “I wrote “While My Guitar Gently Weeps… I was thinking about the Chinese I Ching, the Book of Changes… I picked up a book at random, opened it, saw ‘gently weeps’, then laid the book down again and started the song.”



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