If you can’t get enough of the 1970s, particularly rock music 70s style music then you might be interested to see if your favorite tunes from that raucous decade make this list. We’ve complied the top ten of our favorite rock music songs from the 1970s. While it’s in no particular order, these songs were the most played of their time and they’re all still played extensively today on radio stations across the Western world. How many are in your old vinyl record collection? From the Beatles to the Rolling Stones, Zeppelin to Floyd, Aerosmith to Kiss and more. Let’s take a look.
Van Halen, Ain’t Talkin Bout Love
While the rock band Van Halen was popular in the 1970s and the 1980s, this particular song took off to critical acclaim in 1978 and was one of rock music 70s finest pieces. Note the way that Eddie Van Halen uses his electric guitar and listen to the song while thinking about that. We bet you’ll find it hard not to pick up your very own imaginary air guitar and emulate Van Halen’s exceptionally original rock style!
Free, All Right Now
Heralding the start of rock music 1970s finest – Free’s All Right Now was the epitome of new-sounding rock and a rock music 70s breakthrough for the band. Unfortunately, the band didn’t survive past 1973 due to drug addiction forcing the band to split up. Within just three years, lead singer Paul Kossoff died. Had he have lived, and the band stayed together, they could have been one of the biggest rock music 70s bands of all time.
Mott the Hoople, All the Young Dudes
You can’t fail to notice David Bowie’s influence in this rock music 70s piece and it’s unsurprising as he wrote it for Mott the Hoople. This was glam rock music 70s rather than all-out rock and involved making over Mott the Hoople from blues to rock stardom. This 1972 song is still iconic even today and seen as the band’s biggest achievement.
Tom Petty, American Girl
The second single released from Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker’s first album, this came out in 1977 and while successful, it reached cult status later on. Timeless and catchy, it’s one of those tunes that every record collection worth any clout must have!
The Guess Who, American Woman
Entering the decade, this rock music 70s song was written to reflect the mood of Americans post-war. One of the band’s best songs, it has all the ingredients of 1970s rock that moved the decade on from the teenage pop bands created in the 1960s with a different sound that epitomized changing musical tastes of the decade.
The Sex Pistols, Anarchy in the UK
Love them or hate them (and it pretty much boils down to that), the Sex Pistols made their mark in the 1970s, soon everyone knew who this rebellious band was. Their sound was, well, er, distinctly different and in 1976 they turned rock into punk rock with their provocative Anarchy in the UK song. This was transformational!
Pink Floyd, Another Brick in the Wall (part 2)
In 1979, legendary rock music 70s band Pink Floyd released the second part of Another Brick in the Wall, following on from the first part’s enormous global success. Yet another song dedicated to rebellion, it’s anti-establishment message was something that resonated with Pink Floyd’s fans, catapulting the song to cult status (where it remains to this very day).
Jethro Tull, Aqualung
The strange-sounding Aqualung which launched in 1971 struck a nerve but there was more to it than an odd title. The guitar was quite something else and gave the song an edge that nothing else has matched. It’s an unforgettable rock music 70s track that deserves to be on this list, defining rock for the rest of the decade as a key influence for other bands.
The Who, Baba O Riley
Another rock anthem that debuted in 1971, note the opening keyboards and the solo viola. This song was new, fresh and had a sound that had never been heard before and planted band The Who firmly on the map. If you’ve never listened to it before, do download it, its sound is just as fresh today as it was in 1971 all those years ago.
Eddie Money, Baby Hold On
Later on in the decade came Baby Hold On in 1978, a radio-staple, this one was played incessantly and heralded a new dawn for rock music 70s style moving into the 1980s. Note the strong lead vocal which is what makes this song a stand-out rock track of its time.
Bruce Springsteen, Backstreets
No rock music 70s list would be complete without the Boss, Bruce Springsteen and Backstreets released in 1975 which came from the album Born to Run. It may never have reached the critical acclaim of other Springsteen hits but boy it packs a punch when it comes to 70s rock music!
The Sweet, Ballroom Blitz
Ah there’s nothing quite like The Sweet and this 1973 favorite just keeps on getting better and better with each listen. This song was inspired by an actual blitz in a ballroom. Believe it or not, it never appeared in the UK on a non-compilation album! There’s really no excuse…