The best guitar riffs of all time have been revealed 8 months ago

The best guitar riffs of all time have been revealed

Do you agree with the number one?

Turn that amp up to 11 – the best guitar riffs of all time have been decided.


At least, the latest iteration thereof.

Per a survey carried out by Muse Group – not to be confused with Muse, who specialise in sky-scraping riffs and a fair wallop of pretension – the results are both 'yep, fair enough' and 'wait, really?' in equal measure.

'Sweet Child O'Mine' by Guns 'N Roses takes the coveted top spot with 37% of the vote, thus meaning it is 100% the best guitar riff in existence. No arguments, okay?

Second place goes to 'Eye of the Tiger' by Survivor, with Queen's 'Another One Bites the Dust' taking the bronze medal.


'Sex on Fire' by Kings of Leon somehow takes fourth spot, while Led Zeppelin's rather more iconic 'Stairway to Heaven' has to settle with fifth place.

As the list progresses, guitar aficionados will no doubt find themselves wading into 'That's not a riff, though, is it?' territory but we'll leave that particular debate up to you, dear reader.

Long-established signature efforts by Michael Jackson, Nirvana, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Eric Clapton, and Dire Straits round out the top 10.

"As owners of Ultimate Guitar, we wanted to find out with this research what the nation’s favourite guitar riffs of all time are, and it’s great to see the variety and timelessness of many of the pieces selected," said Muse Group CEO Jonathan Kehl.


"It’s clear that people are genuinely interested in how they can learn these riffs, and why it’s worthwhile picking up an instrument whether it’s for the first time or the 70th time."

The entire list, which no doubt leaves out many of your personal favourites, can be viewed from top to bottom below.

1. 'Sweet Child O’Mine' – Guns N’ Roses
2. 'Eye of the Tiger' – Survivor
3. 'Another One Bites the Dust' – Queen
4. 'Sex on Fire' – Kings of Leon
5. 'Stairway to Heaven' – Led Zeppelin
6. 'Beat It' – Michael Jackson
7. 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' – Nirvana
8. 'Sweet Home Alabama' – Lynyrd Skynyrd
9. 'Layla' – Eric Clapton
10. 'Money For Nothing' – Dire Straits
11. 'Purple Haze' – Jimi Hendrix
12. 'The Chain' – Fleetwood Mac
13. 'Back In Black' – AC/DC
14. 'The Ace of Spades' – Motorhead
15. 'Walk this Way' – Aerosmith & Run DMC
16. 'Smoke on the Water' – Deep Purple
17. 'You Really Got Me' – The Kinks
18. 'The Wall' – Pink Floyd
19. 'Ring of Fire' – Johnny Cash
20. 'I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll' – Joan Jett
21. 'Voodoo Chile' – Jimi Hendrix
22. 'Born To Be Wild' – Steppenwolf
23. 'Seven Nation Army' – the White Stripes
24. 'Satisfaction (I Can’t Get No)' – The Rolling Stones
25. 'Come As You Are' – Nirvana
26. 'Whole Lotta Love' – Led Zeppelin
27. 'I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor' – Arctic Monkeys
28. 'Message In A Bottle' – The Police
29. 'All Right Now' – Free
30. 'Brown Sugar' – The Rolling Stones