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Eric Clapton (Derek & the Dominos)


Layla is unquestionably Clapton's best-known song, a tearful plea to a girl, Layla — or Pattie as the case may have been — to take heed of his unrequited love. Certainly, it burns with fierce intensity, helped by Allman's screeching slide work, before mellowing out into Whitlock's piano lament, which is interwoven with Clapton and Allman's weeping guitar.

Led Zeppelin

Stairway To Heaven

Far from being a mere rock song, Stairway To Heaven has become something of a people's favourite, cover-version fodder and a paradigm for every wannabe guitarist. The song, quoted as “speeds up like an adrenaline flow”, consists of several distinct sections, beginning with a slow introduction on a finger-picked six-string guitar, gradually moving into a slow electric middle section, before the faster hard rock final section.

Bruce Springsteen

Born To Run

It was the record nobody wanted. The song was Springsteen's last-ditch effort to make it big. Few rock 'n' roll songs can match the exhilaration and the sheer resurgent magnificence of ‘Born To Run'. It is the ultimate song of escape, of liberation from life's weary tedium, with a simple, four-note octave riff that takes the towering chorus towards a delirious, unforgettable high.

Pink Floyd


Time is, perhaps, most famous for its cacophony of chiming clocks, with each clock recorded separately in an antiques' store. This is followed by an eerie two-minute passage dominated by Nick Mason's rototoms and backgrounded by a tocking sound created by Roger Waters, picking two muted strings on his bass. Gilmour's guitar solo is unequalled, remaining one of his all-time classics.

David Bowie

Moonage Daydream

Moonage Daydream is Bowie's best-ever song, beautifully paced and beautifully played. Moonage Daydream is a good example of slangy, hip Americanism, filled as it is with lines such as ‘Mama-papa' and ‘Freakout', despite being regarded as the embodiment of the English obsession with style. The closing guitar ‘freakout' is Mick Ronson's greatest moment on a Bowie record.

Those that almost made it

Radio Head: Paranoid Andriod

Nirvana: Come As You Are

U2: Bullet The Blue Sky

Michael Jackson: Beat It

Guns 'N' Roses: Don't Cry

(Sandeep Swaminathan is a Master of Computer Applications graduate from SSN College of Engineering working as a Software Engineer. )

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