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Alex Van Halen drum intro is voted best ever

The drum intro to Van Halen classic Hot For Teacher has been voted the best of all time – ahead of work by Rush, Guns N’ Roses, Led Zeppelin and Queens Of The Stone Age.

The poll was compiled from readers of Rhythm magazine, who gave Dave Grohl three positions in the top 10, and two to John Bonham.

Rhythm say of Alex Van Halen’s start to 1983 track Hot For Teacher: “It’s arguably one of the most iconic intros in rock, and playing it is a holy grail for a lot of drummers. Alex Van Halen steps out of his guitarist brother Eddie’s shadow to shine with a blistering solo before kicking into a furious double-bass shuffle in a flurry of notes.”

The rest of the chart includes Judas Priest, Nirvana, Foo Fighters and Iron Maiden.

Rhythm’s top 10 drum intros

  1. Van Halen: Hot For Teacher

  2. Rush: The Spirit Of Radio

  3. Guns N’ Roses: You Could Be Mine

  4. Led Zeppelin: Rock And Roll

  5. Queens Of The Stone Age: A Song For The Dead

  6. Led Zeppelin: When The Levee Breaks

  7. Judas Priest: Painkiller

  8. Nirvana: Smells Like Teen Spirit

  9. Foo Fighters: My Hero

  10. Iron Maiden: Where Eagles Dare

Martin Kielty

Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band (opens in new tab), a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories (opens in new tab) about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.