8 Songs Guitarists Always Get Asked to Play
by Frederik Nielsen, Aug 22, 2022 . 5 min read
The top 8 songs guitarists always get asked to play will help you expand your repertoire.
But what should you learn? Another Ed Sheeran song? Just kidding. They’re difficult enough to forget. No, now’s the time to learn the songs that guitarists always get asked to play. Whether it’s at a family function or a jam night down at the local, there are certain songs people just can’t resist requesting.
Before we start, we want to tell you about Roadie Coach. This is a compact-sized tool that attaches to your instrument and gives you personalized feedback on your playing and on your voice. It features a high-quality recording mic that captures your performance to then give you valuable insight on how to progress. Without further ado, here are some iconic bass riffs to impress your friends with and make yourself seem like a pro.
There are quite a few classic songs to choose from, so narrowing them down to the top 8 wasn’t easy. But we’ve included a difficult song to keep you occupied with practice, two songs that fit the current situation, and two songs that, while great, can be quite exhausting to play over and over (and over) again.
1. The Animals – House Of The Rising Sun
There is a house in New Orleans they call the Rising Sun. And it’s been the ruin of many a poor boy and God, each one of them knows that this isn’t an easy song to learn. But you can be sure that someone, at some point in your guitar career, will ask you to play it for them.
2. Bob Marley – Redemption Song
Whether you’re sitting around a campfire or, as is more likely these days, stuck with your family during a quarantine, there’s a good chance someone will ask you “Won’t you help to sing these songs of freedom?” At that point, you’re expected to provide the musical backdrop.
3. Eagles – Hotel California
The current quarantine has turned every household into a Hotel California. You can check out any time you like but you can never leave. And since you’ve nowhere to go, there’s no better time than now to learn this song which you’ll undoubtedly be asked to play after the lockdown.
4. Led Zeppelin – Stairway To Heaven
If you’re tired of people asking you to play certain songs, then there’s a life hack for you. When Stairway To Heaven is inevitably brought up, agree to play it. But here’s the trick: insist on playing the entire eight-minute song. You won’t be asked to play another one.
5. Oasis – Wonderwall
Few riffs are as pleasant as those in Wonderwall. But it can be a bore to play after the umpteenth time. Here’s how to end that trend. Do your best and loudest vocal impression of Noel Gallagher at as close range as possible and you’ll quickly satisfy everyone’s appetite.
6. What’s Up – 4 Non Blondes
A massive anthem from the 90s, this song is as easy as it is popular. With just a few chords and a simple structure, What’s Up appeals to folks the world over and in different generations. It is fun to sing and a common request in parties and karaoke bars.
7. Light My Fire – The Doors
This song defined an entire generation and became a classic that fit perfectly in any situation. It features a very catchy melody and a folk-like feel. It has been covered by many artists since it was originally released by the Doors, and remains a very popular song.
8. Every Breath You Take – The Police
Written by Police’s frontman and singer Sting, this song is the most played of the ’80s. It is a common piece for many weddings, although it actually talks about a stalker. It remains an immensely popular song and one that is commonly requested everywhere.
Time to Expand Your Repertoire
These were the top five songs guitarists always get asked to play. The chances of you not being asked to play at least one of them are as slim as you ever finding the black hole that has swallowed so many of your favorite guitar picks. So jot down the tabs for each of them and enjoy — there’ll be plenty of time to practice!
Need an additional challenge? Try learning these 2 Notoriously Difficult Songs to Learn on Guitar.