Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time was the cover story of a special issue of Rolling Stone magazine published in November 2004.

It was chosen based on votes by 172 musicians, critics, and industry figures. As with numerous such lists, the choices are a source of debate for many.

The Song List

The top songs on the list are:

  1. "Like a Rolling Stone" by Bob Dylan
  2. "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" by The Rolling Stones
  3. "Imagine" by John Lennon
  4. "What's Going On" by Marvin Gaye
  5. "Respect" by Aretha Franklin
  6. "Good Vibrations" by The Beach Boys
  7. "Johnny B. Goode" by Chuck Berry
  8. "Hey Jude" by The Beatles
  9. "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana
  10. "What'd I Say" by Ray Charles
  11. "My Generation" by The Who
  12. "A Change Is Gonna Come" by Sam Cooke
  13. "Yesterday" by The Beatles
  14. "Blowin' in the Wind" by Bob Dylan
  15. "London Calling" by The Clash
  16. "I Want to Hold Your Hand" by The Beatles
  17. "Purple Haze" by The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  18. "Maybellene" by Chuck Berry
  19. "Hound Dog" by Elvis Presley
  20. "Let It Be" by The Beatles


The list is composed largely of American and British artists: out of the 500 songs, 357 are from the US and 117 from the UK; the third most represented country is Ireland with 12 entries, then Canada with 10. The list includes just one song not in English (La Bamba by Ritchie Valens) and only three songs from the 21st century. The oldest song on the list is "Rollin' Stone" from 1948 (ranked #459). The only other song from the 1940s is Hank Williams' "I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry" from 1949 (#111). The most recent is OutKast's 2003 hit "Hey Ya!" (#180). With 23 songs on the list, The Beatles are the most represented musical act. John Lennon is the only artist to place multiple songs in the top 10 (as a member of the Beatles and as an individual). The Beatles are followed by The Rolling Stones (14 entries); Bob Dylan, who also topped the list with "Like a Rolling Stone" (12 entries); Elvis Presley (11 entries); The Beach Boys and Jimi Hendrix (seven entries each) and Chuck Berry, U2, James Brown, Prince, Led Zeppelin and Sly & The Family Stone (six entries each).

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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