The 60 Best Songs To Learn On Guitar (From Beginner To Advanced)

Every guitarist needs a songbook, and we’re going to help you build yours! Let’s look at the 60 best songs to learn on guitar…

Over 100,000 guitar-learners get our world-class guitar tips & tutorials sent straight to their inbox: Click here to join them

In this free lesson you will learn…

  • 60 amazing tunes with links to songs, lessons and tablature
  • Pro tips for approaching each level of song
  • Challenging riffs that you can approach at any level to help build chops
  • Some of our favourite personal song choices

Let’s Have A Look At The 60 Best Songs To Learn On Guitar

Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate or professional guitarist, one thing is for certain:

You can never have too big of a songbook.

At every stage of our musical education, we learn new songs. We learn these songs to absorb musical ideas, to learn to emulate them, and to help us create new ones of our own.

The goal of today’s lesson is to expand your songbook as much as we can with a master list of tunes applicable for everyone.

Today, we’re going to look at the best songs to learn on guitar for every level of player, in our humble opinion.

Best-Songs-To-Learn-On-Guitar

You’re probably asking yourself:

“What makes these the best songs to learn on guitar? What’s the big deal?”

In short: It’s what’s inside that matters.

Each of the tunes on this list has something valuable to offer the player learning them. Whether it’s a unique riff, a catchy strumming pattern or a new chord, there’s always something to unpack in each of these songs.

We consider these to be some of the best songs to learn on guitar because they provide a challenge. They’re also just straight-up catchy to listen

Before we get into it, there are a few pointers we want to go over – so let’s do that now.

Best-Songs-To-Learn-On-Guitar

How To Approach This List of the Best Songs To Learn On Guitar

First thing’s first: You should probably bookmark this page.

Why? Because you’ll very likely find yourself coming back to pull out more songs to learn. Nothing wrong with that!

It’s important to have a good library of resources to help you learn, and having a list of the best songs to learn on guitar means you’ll always have a challenge waiting for you.

The next tip: Go slow.

Learning music is like eating a meal – you don’t want to rush through it by any means.

Not only will you enjoy the process less, but you won’t digest the song in a healthy way enough to remember it later.

On that note, let’s talk about muscle memory for a minute.

Best-Songs-To-Learn-On-Guitar

Muscle memory is that very special part of our brain that allows our fingers to remember more or less exactly how to play something.

Muscle memory is the reason guitarists can give identical performances of their music all across the world, night after night.

This unique set of strands in our brain has to be built over time – through practice – and that’s why we need to start slow when we learn.

The more time we take with a piece of music, the more ingrained in our brains it becomes.

This makes it increasingly easier for guitarists to recall that piece of music at a later date and play it chord-for-chord from memory.

In short: if you want to “get good” at the best songs to learn on guitar, start slow.

Best-Songs-To-Learn-On-Guitar

Learn the 12 EASIEST beginner chords with our famous FREE guide

  Stop struggling. Start making music.

  Learn 12 beginner-friendly versions of every chord.

  This is our most popular guide and it will improve your chord ability quickly.

A Few Notes On Practice

Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes.

If you’re willing to take the time to perfect your approach to the best songs to learn on guitar from this list, you’ll want to track your progress along the way.

A practice journal is a great way to keep track of how you’re doing either overall or on a specific song/exercise.

Why is this a thing we need? Because it helps us keep track of where we’re at.

Of course this is a thing you can keep track of yourself, but where goal-setting is concerned you’re going to want to write some things down.

Best-Songs-To-Learn-On-Guitar

Some great things you can include in your practice journal are:

  • Any songs you’re working on and your completion of each of them so far
  • A list of chords you have learned
  • A list of chords you haven’t learned yet but are planning to
  • Progress with scales and memorizing the fretboard
  • The current tempo of a song or scale that you are practicing at

You’ll also want to use it to keep track of which songs you’ve learned on this list of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Practice journals are a fantastic means of tracking your progress, so make sure you write everything down to keep up with yourself!

Best-Songs-On-Guitar

The 25 Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Beginners

Now we get to dive into the fun stuff.

In this first list, we’re going to touch on songs that are both easy and fun to play, requiring little more than some chords and the occasional guitar riff to keep our fingers warm.

We’re not focused on technique here, so much as we are on simply playing everything clearly.

Clear playing is our focus as beginners, so try not to deviate too far from that notion.

Complicating things for ourselves early on can lead to more frustration than we need to worry about dealing with at this stage in our musical journey.

Let’s get to the list! You’ll find a link to each song as well as the chord charts next to the song titles.

We’ve got a few full lessons on some of these songs as well, and we’ve linked them where available.

Easy-songs-to-learn-on-guitar

Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Beginners:

CCR – “Bad Moon Rising” – Song | Lesson **

Link Wray – “Rumble” – Song | Chords/Tabs **

The Rolling Stones – “Satisfaction” – Song | Lesson

Survivor – “Eye of the Tiger” – Song | Tabs

Deep Purple – “Smoke on the Water” – Song | Tabs

Black Sabbath – “Iron Man” – Song | Tabs

Ed Sheeran – “I See Fire” – Song | Chords/Tabs

AC/DC – “TNT” – Song | Tabs

Black Sabbath – “Paranoid” – Song | Tabs | Alternate Version w/Chords

Nirvana – “Smells Like Teen Spirit” – Song | Tabs

The White Stripes – “Fell In Love With A Girl” – Song | Tabs

Passenger – “Let Her Go” – Song | Lesson

Foo Fighters – “My Hero” – Song | Chords

Lenny Kravitz – “Are You Gonna Go My Way” – Song | Tabs

Ghost – “Square Hammer” – Song | Tabs

Neil Young – “Needle & The Damage Done” – Song | Tabs

Radiohead – “Creep” – Song | Lesson **

Johnny Cash – “Folsom Prison Blues” – Song | Lesson

Songs-to-learn-on-guitar

Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Beginners (continued):

Derek & The Dominos – “Layla” – Song | Tab

Chuck Berry – “Johnny B. Goode” – Song | Tab

The Troggs – “Wild Thing”  – Song | Tab

Aerosmith – “Walk This Way” – Song | Tab

Jack Johnson – “Banana Pancakes” – Song | Lesson

Ozzy Osbourne – “Crazy Train” – Song | Tab **

Michael Jackson – “Beat It” – Song | Tab **

These are just a few of the best songs to learn on guitar, but we feel that this is an appropriate list of 25 starter tunes that will get your toes tapping and your fingers moving.

Ready to move on to the intermediate section? Keep scrolling for more of a challenge.

Learn-songs-on-guitar

How To Approach The Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Intermediate Players

If you thought that the list above was a bit too easy for your chops, we’ve got some more challenging tunes for you.

The songs on this list are made to push your fingers a little bit further than the ones on the previous list, but not to the point of discomfort.

If you’re eager for a challenge but don’t want to tackle overtly-technical music just yet, this list of the best songs to learn on guitar is perfect for you.

First off, we’ve got a few pointers for you that will help guide you through this list with confidence.

Best-guitar-songs-to-learn

Before we get into this next list of the best songs to learn on guitar for intermediate players, we need to make sure we’ve gotten a good feel for a few things. Let’s discuss.

  1. Your technique: At this stage, we’re operating on the assumption that you’ve had some time to work on techniques like hammer-ons, pull-offs and bending.We’re not under the assumption that you’ve perfected any of this, but just that you know what these techniques are and how to execute them.

Free-best-guitar-songs-lesson

  1. Your chords: It’s important at this stage that you have a decent grasp on your chords, as you’ll begin to see more of them pop up in the songs on this list. Whether you’re using stepping stone chords or full shapes at this point is up to you, but we recommend having a good understanding of guitar chords before diving in.
  2. Barre chords: Whether we want to admit it or not, barre chords are bound to pop up in any list of the best songs to learn on guitar. At some point, we’ve gotta sink our teeth in and learn how to play them. If you want a full lesson on barre chords before tackling this list, click here.

Free-best-guitar-songs-tutorial

The Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Intermediate Players

Much like the previous list, we’ve got links to the song tracks as well as either tabs, chords, or a lesson from us (where available).

If you had fun with the list of the best songs to learn on guitar for beginners, you’re going to have a blast with this one.

Pro Tip: We highly suggest using a metronome to help you practice the more complex musical passages in these songs.

If you don’t have one of your own, Google has got that sorted out for you.

Click here to use the Google Metronome.

Without further banter, check out our next list below.

Free-guitar-lesson

Best Songs To Learn On Guitar if you want a bit of a challenge. Our personal favourite picks are marked with a “ ** ”.

The Black Crowes – “Hard To Handle” – Song | Tab **

Eric Clapton – “Tears In Heaven” – Song | Tab

Kansas – “Dust In The Wind” – Song | Tab

Led Zeppelin – “Rock & Roll” – Song | Tab **

The Police – “Every Breath You Take” – Song | Tab | Chords **

The Beatles – “Blackbird” – Song | Tab | Chords

The Black Crowes – “She Talks To Angels” – Song | Tab | Chords

Joe Satriani – “Tears In The Rain” – Song | Tab

John Mayer – “Waiting On The World To Change” – Song | Tab | Chords

Smashing Pumpkins – “1979” – Song | Tab

Metallica – “Nothing Else Matters” – Song | Tab

Top-songs-to-learn-on-guitar

Best Songs To Learn On Guitar for intermediate players (continued):

Animals – “House Of The Rising Sun” – Song | Tab | Chords

Scorpions – “Rock You Like A Hurricane” – Song | Tabs

Led Zeppelin – “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” – Song | Tab

The Killers – “Mr. Brightside” – Song | Chords

Incubus – “Drive” – Song | Tab

Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Under The Bridge” – Song | Tab | Chords

Stevie Ray Vaughan – “Pride & Joy” – Song | Tab **

The Beatles – “Day Tripper” – Song | Chords

Joseph Kosma/Jazz Standards – “Autumn Leaves” – Song | Tab (Simplified version) **

Fleetwood Mac – “Landslide” – Song | Chords

Blue Oyster Cult – “Don’t Fear The Reaper” – Song | Tabs **

Neil Young – “Cinnamon Girl” – Song | Lesson

Allman Brothers Band – “Stormy Monday” – Song | Lesson

Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Can’t Stop” – Song | Tabs

Pro Tip: Repetition is the key to getting any song under your hands. Remember, muscle memory governs all where guitar is concerned. Practice well and practice often!

We’re not done yet, however!

National-guitar-academy

Download our lead guitar cheat-sheet to make things easier

It can be disorientating for guitarists to understand which scales work with which keys.

With this in mind, we created a cheat-sheet; a key and scale-finder that you can use again and again.

So, You Want More?

We figured as much – that’s why we put one more little list together to help round out this lesson on the best songs to learn on guitar.

This is for you goal-setters and go-getters out there that are putting in the time and want something to really bend your fingers around.

Maybe you’re curious what more advanced tablature looks like.

Maybe you’re hungry for more of a challenge.

Maybe you just want to see where you can push your skillset.

If any of these are you, this last section is for you.

We’ve put together one last section of the best songs to learn on guitar for advanced players.

Best-guitar-songs-lesson

Pro Tip: Even if you don’t consider yourself to be an “advanced player,” it helps to challenge yourself to some of these riffs every now and again.

This will help put you in a better position to begin learning more challenging riffs down the line.

Now let’s look at some of the best songs to learn on guitar for advanced players.

The Best Songs To Learn On Guitar For Advanced Players

For our last list in this lesson, we gathered up some songs that will really force you to slow down and take it one riff at a time.

Sometimes even as beginner and intermediate guitarists, we need to find riffs that make us go “what’s that and how do I play it?”

Challenges are healthy, and these songs will make you work your fingers in just that little bit more.

Have a look below.

Best Songs To Learn On Guitar if you want a bigger challenge.

Led Zeppelin – “Stairway To Heaven” – Song | Tab

Van Halen – “Hot For Teacher” – Song | Tab

Andy Timmons – “Electric Gypsy” – Song | Tab **

Steve Vai – “For The Love Of God” – Song | Tab

Joe Satriani – “Satch Boogie” – Song | Tab

Stevie Ray Vaughan – “Texas Flood” – Song | Tab

The Eagles – “Hotel California” – Song | Tab

Carlos Santana – “Black Magic Woman” – Song | Tab

Jimi Hendrix – “Voodoo Chile” – Song | Tab

Iron Maiden – “The Trooper” – Song | Tab

So, What’s The Secret To Mastery With These Songs?

The secret is in fact not a secret at all! It’s just practice, time and dedication.

Anything can be achieved when we put our minds to it, so give yourself the time you need to wrap your hands around this list of the best songs to learn on guitar.

Bookmark this page, make your own list of songs to tackle, and get to practicing!

Recommended Resources

If you enjoyed this list of the best songs to learn on guitar, you’re going to love the other lessons we’ve got in store for you below:

What Type of Guitarist Are You?

Take our 60-second quiz & get your results: Take The Quiz

Want free guitar tips and video lessons delivered to your inbox?

Join over 100,000 other guitar learners and subscribe to our guitar-tips-by-email service. (It's free.)

We'll send you a series of lessons that will move you to the next level of your guitar journey.

Learn how everything fits together quickly, easily and effectively. We share ninja tips (for instant fun!) but also timeless fundamentals that will deepen your understanding.


Popular Lessons

How To Learn Guitar: An 11-Step Programme For Beginners

10 Easy Songs For Beginners

How To Strum A Guitar

How To Choose The Perfect Beginner Guitar

Guitar Notes Explained: A Guide For Beginners

How To Play Lead Guitar

3 Easy Ways To Play Bm

More Cool Guitar Stuff

Learn about the National Guitar Academy: About Us

Visit our YouTube channel for fun guitar videos.

Join us on Facebook for daily guitar tips.

Listen to our Learn Guitar Podcast for rapid guitar progress.

Check out our free chord lessons.

 

Get our best guitar tips & videos
Where should we send it?
Where should we send it?
Get our best guitar tips & videos
Enter your email address to learn our best guitar tips and tricks today!