Doo doo doo: "Smoke on the Water" still top riff

Fri Apr 4, 2008 4:32am EDT
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By Atholl Simpson

LONDON (Reuters) - Deep Purple's 1973 hit "Smoke on the Water" is the greatest guitar riff of all time, according to a poll by a London music school that has taught members of top bands like Radiohead, The Kinks and The Cure.

The majority of the 25 songs selected by current students of the London Tech Music School, were recorded in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. Only seven were recorded in the last 20 years.

"It was the iconic era for the electric guitar." head of the school's Guitar and Bass section John Wheatcroft told Reuters.

"A lot of our students started listening to their parents records and discovered these bands through them."

The most recent song selected was "7 Nation Army" recorded by American rock duo The White Stripes in 2003.

But Wheatcroft does not believe this spells the end of modern music.

"The great riffs can simply be the ones that withstood the test of time." he said. "It might just be a question of waiting till the dust settles and in 10 years time it could be completely different."

Other songs include "Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix (1967), "Walk This Way" by Aerosmith (1975) and "Money For Nothing" by Dire Straits (1984).   Continued...

<p>Guitar players raise their instruments after their world record attempt on a field in the southern German town of Leinfelden-Echterdingen June 23, 2007. REUTERS/Alex Grimm</p>