There’s no doubt that acoustic songs have played a lead role in in rock and roll.
And while we’ve talked about many of these songs and their origins, taught you how to play them and shared many a thought about ‘em, we think it’s time to get down to brass tacks.
While it’s been ridiculously hard to whittle our list down, we now present you with what we think are some of the best acoustic rock songs of all time.
Over the next several weeks we’ll be giving you a chance to vote for your favorites as we aim to name the Best Acoustic Rock Song of All Time presented by TC Electronic!
So come back every day and vote. And check out today’s entries below.
"SHE TALKS TO ANGELS," THE BLACK CROWES
Shake Your Money Maker (1990)
"Jealous Again," "Twice as Hard" and "Hard to Handle" put Atlanta's Black Crowes on the map as a raucous, genuine-article blues-rock ensemble.
But it was this soulful acoustic-driven number about the ravages of heroin addiction that put the band over the top-and gave it a Number One song.
For the recording, guitarist Rich Robinson (who wrote the music to the song when he was just 15) played a Martin D-28 in open D tuning. Although he capoed the 2nd fret, effectively giving him an open E tuning, there's a certain feel and texture to his sound that fits the wrenching nature of the track. Add in brother Chris Robinson's soulful, yearning vocal, and you have something truly heavenly.
"STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN," LED ZEPPELIN
Led Zeppelin IV (1971)
Led Zeppelin III was largely an unplugged affair, but "Stairway to Heaven," from the band's follow-up, wins the prize for acoustic guitar excellence.
Jimmy Page's delicately fingerpicked arpeggios made the song Zeppelin's-and rock's-definitive acoustic moment.
Over the years, "Stairway to Heaven" has dominated countless "greatest rock song ever" lists, thanks to its spellbinding mix of lyrical mysticism, compositional and production genius and instrumental virtuosity.
But its most celebrated moment remains Page's unaccompanied intro: whether heard on a radio or played by some pimply kid in a guitar store, all it takes is those first few acoustic guitar notes and you can instantly name that tune.