Choosing the best guitar riff is completely subjective, but it's always fun to debate.
Total Guitar and Guitar World magazines conducted a poll and Jimmy Page's riff in Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love" was number-one.
The July issue of Total Guitar says the song's "guitar figure took just 2.7 seconds to play, but it immediately projected music into another decade. While everyone else was still playing the '60s, Zeppelin were now playing the '70s.
"It wasn't the first great riff, but it is the defining one. It's why riffs became central to guitar music, the reason bands search for the guitar hook that can propel a whole song — or even a whole career."
Last year, Page told Total Guitar that the riff was "so fresh and it still is. If somebody plays that riff, it brings a smile to people’s faces. It's a really positive thing."
The Top 10 greatest riffs of all-time, as chosen by the readers of Total Guitar and Guitar World magazines, are:
- "Whole Lotta Love" -Led Zeppelin/ riff by Jimmy Page
- "Crazy Train" -Ozzy Osbourne/ riff by Randy Rhoads
- "Back in Black" -AC/DC/ riff by Angus Young
- "Smoke on the Water" -Deep Purple/ riff by Ritchie Blackmore
- "Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love" -Van Halen/ riff by Eddie Van Halen
- "Enter Sandman" -Metallica/ riff by Kirk Hammett
- "Iron Man" -Black Sabbath/ riff by Tony Iommi
- "Walk" - Pantera / riff by Dimebag Darrell
- "La Grange" -ZZ Top / riff by Billy Gibbons
- "Purple Haze" - Jimi Hendrix