The Best of Rock and Roll from the 60’s and 70’s

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A look back at the best rock and roll hits from the 60’s and 70’s. Featuring music from The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, and more!

The Beatles

The Beatles were an English rock band formed in London in 1960. The line-up of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr led the band to be regarded as the foremost and most influential music band in history. With a sound rooted in skiffle, beat and 1950s rock and roll, they later utilised several genres, ranging from pop ballads to psychedelic rock, often incorporating classical and other elements in innovative ways. In 1963, their immense popularity first emerged as “Beatlemania”; as the group’s music grew in sophistication, led by primary songwriters Lennon and McCartney, they came to be perceived as an embodiment of the ideals shared by the counterculture of the 1960s.

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. The first stable line-up consisted of Brian Jones (guitar, harmonica), Ian Stewart (piano), Mick Jagger (lead vocals, harmonica), Keith Richards (guitar, vocals), Bill Wyman (bass) and Charlie Watts (drums). Stewart was removed from the official line-up in 1963 but continued as a touring member until his death in 1985. Jones died less than a month after Watts, having already been replaced by Mick Taylor, who remained until 1974. After Taylor’s departure, Ron Wood would remain as a second guitarist until Gillespie’s retirement in 2016.

The Rolling Stones were at the forefront of the British Invasion of bands that became popular in the United States in 1964 and were identified with the youthful and rebellious counterculture of the 1960s. They developed into a leading band of their era over the next few years. By 1967 they were viewed as epitomizing counterculture; they appeared on both Time magazine’s cover and Richard Avedon’s photograph for Life magazine’s May 1967 issue alongside Ken Kesey and Allen Ginsberg—an image that historian Erik Davis called “the most famous group shot since Leni Riefenstahl photographed Hitler with his cabinet for Triumph of the Will.”

Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin was an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group’s heavy, guitar-driven sound has led them to be cited as one of the progenitors of heavy metal. They were also ranked by Rolling Stone magazine as the greatest rock and roll band of all time. The band members were Jimmy Page (guitar), Robert Plant (vocals), John Paul Jones (bass) and John Bonham (drums).

The Who

The Who is an English rock band formed in 1964. They grew to be considered one of the greatest rock bands of all time, with hits such as “My Generation”, “Pinball Wizard”, and “Won’t Get Fooled Again”. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.

Jimi Hendrix

If there’s one musician who epitomizes the psychedelic 60’s, it’s Jimi Hendrix. With his innovative style of electric guitar playing, Hendrix created a whole new sound that was unlike anything that had come before. His most famous songs, such as “Purple Haze” and “Foxy Lady”, are still revered by fans today.

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd was an English rock band formed in London in 1965. They are credited with creating some of the most iconic and influential music of the 20th century. Their best known albums include “The Dark Side of the Moon” and “The Wall”. They are widely regarded as one of the most important and influential bands in rock history.

David Bowie

David Bowie was one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. He was a multi-talented artist who dabbled in acting, painting, and writing, in addition to making music. His unique style and stage presence made him a true icon in the world of rock and roll.

Bowie’s early work was heavily influenced by British Invasion bands such as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. He also drew inspiration from American R&B and soul music. He created a new sound that was a fusion of these various genres, and his work had a huge impact on the development of popular music in the 1960s and 1970s.

Bowie’s most famous album, “The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars,” is a concept album about an alien rock star who comes to Earth to spread a message of love and peace. The album is widely considered to be one of the greatest albums of all time, and it further solidified Bowie as a true icon in the world of rock music.

If you’re a fan of rock music from the 60s and 70s, then you definitely need to check out David Bowie’s work. You won’t be disappointed!


Queen is a British rock band formed in London in 1970. The band members were Freddie Mercury (lead vocals and piano), Brian May (guitar, vocals), John Deacon (bass), and Roger Taylor (drums, vocals). Queen’s classic line-up was notable for its unusual instrumentation, with May playing a home-made electric guitar.

The band combined elements of hard rock, heavy metal, glam rock, and progressive rock to create their unique sound. They achieved international success with their 1973 album “Queen II”, and their 1974 album “Sheer Heart Attack”. By the early 1980s, Queen were one of the biggest stadium rock bands in the world. They released “The Game” in 1980, which featured the hits “Crazy Little Thing Called Love” and “Another One Bites the Dust”, both of which reached number one on the US Billboard Hot 100.

In 1985, they released their most successful album to date, “A Night at the Opera”, which contained the hits “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “You’re My Best Friend”. In 1991, Mercury died of AIDS-related pneumonia. After Mercury’s death, Deacon retired from the band in 1997. May and Taylor have continued to perform as Queen with other vocalists and musicians.

Elton John

Elton John is one of the most popular and well-known musicians of the 20th century. He rose to prominence in the 1970s with a string of hits that established him as one of the biggest stars of his generation. His work in the 1960s and 1970s helped to define the sound of rock and roll, and he remains one of the most influential musicians of his era. Elton John has sold more than 300 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling artists of all time. He has won five Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Tony Award.

Rod Stewart

Rod Stewart is a British singer, songwriter and actor. Born and raised in London, he is of Scottish and English ancestry. Stewart is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, having sold over 100 million records worldwide. He has had 16 top ten singles in the US, with four reaching #1 on the Billboard Hot 100. In the UK, he has had six consecutive number one albums, and his tally of 62 UK hit singles includes 31 that reached the top ten, six of which gained the #1 position.

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