The musical genre that has never faded, and whose fundamental spirit seems to outlive generations after us, is definitely Rock n Roll. A melodramatic tune, created on electric guitar, combined with the punk of groovy music is all it takes musicians to go “rock n rolling”. At times sad and critical; at times mocking and satirical; and yet at others clutching the society and its tenets, these songs lend a voice to rebellion in a toned down or animated manner than ever before. So, here’s a list of the top 10 Rock n Roll songs that have lived the tests of time and inspired billions with their lyrical feats.
10. Its only Rock and Roll – The Rolling Stones:
For all the Rolling Stones fans, this song is a delight for addicts and its lyrics, a balm for the aching soul. When it goes hollering about “if I could stick a knife right in my heart, suicide right on stage……” it stirs the hearts of the hard souls, makes them shake a leg to its rhythm and for a while drives away all the pain, giving a voice to the hidden emotions of every lover who got deceit in return for love.
9. So you Wanna be a Rock n Roll Star – Byrds:
As contemporary as it was back when it hit the market, the song still remains a hardliner critique about selling your talent and your soul to others for money. With words like “sell your soul to company, who are waiting there, to sell plastic…..” it gives you a ride to the reality about talent use, or rather misuse. But, if you don’t pay much heed to the lyrics, you can simply shake your booty to its groovy music and rock and roll as you hum along.
8. Rock n Roll – Velvet Underground:
This song is rather personal to band member Janie because it describes how she discovered Rock n Roll music. She puts the song as: “Then one fine morning she puts on a New York Station, You know her life was saved by Rock n Roll”. Its lighthearted lyrics, combined with the bouncy tunes of Rock n Roll make it sound as fresh as it was when it first released in 1970.
7. Rock n Roll with me – David Bowie:
One of the most memorable tracks by David Bowie, ‘Rock n Roll with me’ features in one of David’s most headstrong albums Diamond Dog. What makes this song even more special is the fact that it is one of the few songs by David that has a soft melody – and far from the hardcore metallic rock – idiosyncratic with the David’s musical style.
6. Let’s Go Crazy – Prince:
If there is a party song that shreds apart the hard realities of life while making you dance it has to be ‘Let’s go Crazy’ by Prince. It starts with “We are gathered here today, to get through this thing called life”; a rather demised start but then as it proceeds it turns into a careless and carefree bombast with “let’s get nuts, let go crazy……”. Trust me the words will keep ringing in your mind till they don’t really turn you into one crazy chap.
5. Rock n Roll is here to stay – Danny and the Juniors:
So while most people think that everything has a limited life, Danny and the Juniors wanted to commemorate Rock n Roll as a genre of music that will never end. To this effect they wrote and sang ‘Rock n Roll is here to stay’. The song blows out loud when it goes “Rock n Roll will always be. It will go down in history, so everybody Rock, now everybody Rock n Roll….”.
4. Highway to Hell –AC DC:
The song and the album, which brought fame to the band AC DC, was ‘Highway to Hell’. The song described the vagaries of being on the road. The band had been touring for long, and as adventurous it seems, they all agreed that being on the road for long is like being on a road to hell. As the song goes, “Hey Satan paid my dues, playing in a rock band”, it does hint to a certain degree of repulsion and rebellion.
3. Rock n Roll – Led Zeppelin:
This one might sound like a simple plain dragging song which prattles sadness in every word, but when given the Rock n Roll tinge it does make you sway to its rhythm. “Baby let my love come running in, yeah, it’s been a long time, been a long time”; The structural simplicity and straight forwardness of the song still finds huge popularity amongst high school kids, doping them with its sweet melody.
2. Hey Jude- The Beatles:
A personal favorite of nearly every Briton on Earth, ‘Hey Jude’ features amongst the best songs from the masters themselves – The Beatles. Brilliantly hopeful and light, it lets the listeners forget their grief. The words “take a sad song, and make it better”, delves deep into the psyche of people and reminds them to shed the weight of unwanted relations from their shoulders, to let it go, and let themselves be free.
1. Rockin’ in the Free World – Neil Young:
A rather dark Rock n Roll track, this one by Neil Young portrays a paradoxical world, where some of us get all the success, while the rest toil for life and drag on without any respite. The lyrics “I see a woman in the night, with a baby in her hand, under an old street light, she hates her life, and what she’s done to it”, itself speaks volumes about another section of the society. And, even in this pain, Neil brings out the best of his electric guitar playing skills. He effortlessly takes every listener on a remorseful Rock n Roll ride.