100 Greatest Songs: 1960-1969

1960's Rock n Roll
1960s Rock n Roll 2

The 1960's was a decade of change.

Not just musically, but politically and socially as well. It's fascinating to witness evolution in music. I mean, could ANYONE have seen the psychedelic era coming in 1962? There's one artist above all that dominated this decade. I'm sure you've heard of them. The Crickets? No, sorry that's not it. Ah, that's right, The Beatles. The four lads from Liverpool that changed music forever and easily the greatest artist of the 20th century. But they weren't the only "British Invasion" band that made their mark. Artists like The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Kinks and The Zombies all made significant music throughout the decade.

But what about the good ol' US of A? Of course since rock music was created in the US, there's plenty of great American artists. Bob Dylan led the pack in that department, delivering some of the greatest songs ever and two of the twenty greatest albums ever in "Highway 61 Revisited" and "Blonde on Blonde". He's on my musical Mt. Rushmore for sure. He along with The Beatles and The Beach Boys helped change Rock and Pop from "entertainment" into "art" with their releases from 1965 to 1967. Some people don't like this truth and often turn up their nose at "Progressive" and "Art" Rock and Pop as being "pretentious" or "boring". Their loss, I say.

So white guys playing guitar of course wasn't the only great thing to come from this wonderful time in music. We saw the rise of four of the greatest and most recognizable black artists ever in Jimi Hendrix, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson (with the Jackson 5) and Stevie Wonder. Though the latter three artists' prime were in the decades that followed, it's interesting to observe their beginnings. In the Jazz world, it gave way to Rock and Pop as the dominant music genres by the middle of the decade, but there wasn't a shortage of Jazz classics. John Coltrane and Charles Mingus both released their greatest achievement, "A Love Supreme" and "The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady", respectively. And we surely can't ignore the lovely Girl Groups during this time. Trust me, at best, this isn't mediocre "teen" pop in the slightest. The Supremes? I'll take them over most rock bands. And the single greatest pop song of all-time? From the Girl Group genre. I rest my case.

I could go on and on about talking about this era. We have never seen music change more drastically from the beginning to end of a decade than the 60s. I feel though as I can safely say that when you look at popular music, the 60s was without a doubt the pinnacle in quality. So let's get psychedelic and take a look at the best songs the decade had to offer.

1960s Rock N Roll 3

Top 100 songs of the 60's

  1. A Day In the Life - The Beatles
  2. Be My Baby - The Ronettes
  3. Like a Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan
  4. God Only Knows - The Beach Boys
  5. Gimme Shelter - The Rolling Stones
  6. I Want You Back - Jackson 5
  7. Hey Jude - The Beatles
  8. All Along the Watchtower - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  9. Waterloo Sunset - The Kinks
  10. Desolation Row - Bob Dylan
  11. My Favorite Things - John Coltrane
  12. Tomorrow Never Knows - The Beatles
  13. Good Vibrations - The Beach Boys
  14. Sympathy For the Devil - The Rolling Stones
  15. My Generation - The Who
  16. I’m Waiting For the Man - The Velvet Underground
  17. Strawberry Fields Forever - The Beatles
  18. River Deep Mountain High - Tina & Ike Turner
  19. I Wanna Be Your Dog - The Stooges
  20. The Boxer - Simon & Garfunkel
  21. Light My Fire - The Doors
  22. A Hard Day's Night - The Beatles
  23. The Weight - The Band
  24. Just Like a Woman - Bob Dylan
  25. While My Guitar Gently Weeps - The Beatles
  26. Shangri-La - The Kinks
  27. Paint It Black - The Rolling Stones
  28. A Change Is Gonna Come - Sam Cooke
  29. Whole Lotta Love - Led Zeppelin
  30. In My Life - The Beatles
  31. Jumpin' Jack Flash - The Rolling Stones
  32. Heroin - The Velvet Underground
  33. Care of Cell 44 - The Zombies
  34. I Want to Hold Your Hand - The Beatles
  35. Green Onions - Booker T. & The M.G.'s
  36. The Court of the Crimson King - King Crimson
  37. She Loves You - The Beatles
  38. Miserlou - Dick Dale & His Del-Tones
  39. Sweet Thing - Van Morrison
  40. Group Dancers - Charles Mingus
  41. I Want You - Bob Dylan
  42. Eleanor Rigby - The Beatles
  43. A Whiter Shade of Pale - Procol Harum
  44. Hey Joe - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  45. Sunday Morning - The Velvet Underground & Nico
  46. (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction - The Rolling Stones
  47. Wouldn't It Be Nice - The Beach Boys
  48. Babe I'm Gonna Leave You - Led Zeppelin
  49. Help! - The Beatles
  50. Papa's Got a Brand New Bag - James Brown
  51. The House of the Rising Sun - The Animals
  52. What Goes On - The Velvet Underground
  53. Stand By Me - Ben E. King
  54. You Can't Always Get What You Want - The Rolling Stones
  55. California Girls - The Beach Boys
  56. Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End - The Beatles
  57. Suzanne - Leonard Cohen
  58. Subterranean Homesick Blues - Bob Dylan
  59. Lucy In the Sky With Diamonds - The Beatles
  60. Don't Worry Baby - The Beach Boys
  61. Venus In Furs - The Velvet Underground & Nico
  62. Rain - The Beatles
  63. She's Not There - The Zombies
  64. Respect - Aretha Franklin
  65. I Can See For Miles - The Who
  66. Purple Haze - The Jimi Hendrix Experience
  67. You Can't Hurry Love - The Supremes
  68. Visions of Johanna - Bob Dylan
  69. I Heard It Through the Grapevine - Marvin Gaye
  70. Heroes and Villains - The Beach Boys
  71. Come Together - The Beatles
  72. The Tracks of My Tears - Smokey Robinson & The Miracles
  73. Space Oddity - David Bowie
  74. Eight Miles High - The Byrds
  75. Runaway - Del Shannon
  76. The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore - The Walker Brothers
  77. Mr. Tambourine Man - Bob Dylan
  78. Reach Out I'll Be There - The Four Tops
  79. California Dreamin' - The Mamas & The Papas
  80. You Really Got Me - The Kinks
  81. (Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay - Otis Redding
  82. White Light/White Heat - The Velvet Underground
  83. Leader of the Pack - The Shangri-Las
  84. Suspicious Minds - Elvis Presley
  85. I Am the Walrus - The Beatles
  86. Fortunate Son - Creedence Clearwater Revival
  87. Blowin' In the Wind - Bob Dylan
  88. 21st Century Schizoid Man - King Crimson
  89. The Sound of Silence - Simon & Garfunkel
  90. Louie Louie - The Kingsmen
  91. The Girl From Ipanema - Stan Getz, João Gilberto & Astrud Gilberto
  92. Ballad of a Thin Man - Bob Dylan
  93. Everyday People - Sly & The Family Stone
  94. With a Little Help From My Friends - The Beatles
  95. You Keep Me Hangin' On - The Supremes
  96. Peaches en Regalia - Frank Zappa
  97. White Rabbit - Jefferson Airplane
  98. Sad Eyed Lady of the Lowlands - Bob Dylan
  99. The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down - The Band
  100. A Love Supreme, Pt. 4: Psalm - John Coltrane

Comments are closed.