World Guitar Day 2017: Deep Purple’s Smoke On The Water tops greatest riffs poll

Ritchie Blackmore
(Image credit: Shinko Music \/ Getty Images)

Deep Purple’s Smoke On The Water has been voted the Greatest Guitar Riff Ever.

Ritchie Blackmore’s iconic riff on the 1972 track has long been hailed as a classic – and with more than 30,000 votes cast by music fans from across the world to mark World Guitar Day 2017, it has fended off competition from some of the biggest names in rock’n’roll to claim the top spot.

The top 10 also features Iron Maiden’s The Trooper, AC/DC’s Back In Black, Guns N’ Roses’ Sweet Child O’ Mine, Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta Love and Kashmir, Metallica’s Master Of Puppets and Enter Sandman, Ozzy Osbourne’s Crazy Train and Black Sabbath’s Paranoid.

TeamRock’s breakdown of the top 20 is now available, while a full list of the top 100 can be found below.

MusicRadar’s World Guitar Day 2017 celebrates all things electric and acoustic and salutes the musicians who have made an impact on rock’n’roll.

Throughout the course of today (October 6) music fans have access to exclusive interviews, blogs, live Q&A sessions and a ‘who’s who’ of guitar gods who are on hand to share their stories and techniques.

There’s free guitar lessons for newcomers to the instrument, while veterans can hone their style and songwriting via expert tips and tutorials.

World Guitar Day 2017 is hosted on MusicRadar and TeamRock, in association with Classic Rock, Metal Hammer, Prog, Guitarist, Total Guitar and Guitar Techniques.

Get involved now by spreading the word through your websites and social channels, using the official hashtag #WGD17.

World Guitar Day 2017: Greatest Guitar Riff Ever final results

  1. Deep Purple - Smoke On The Water
  2. Iron Maiden - The Trooper
  3. AC/DC - Back In Black
  4. Led Zeppelin - Whole Lotta Love
  5. Metallica - Master Of Puppets
  6. Guns N’ Roses - Sweet Child O’ Mine
  7. Metallica - Enter Sandman
  8. Led Zeppelin - Kashmir
  9. Black Sabbath - Paranoid
  10. Ozzy Osbourne - Crazy Train
  11. Black Sabbath - Iron Man
  12. Motorhead - Ace Of Spades
  13. AC/DC - Thunderstruck
  14. Metallica - Creeping Death
  15. The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Purple Haze
  16. AC/DC - Highway To Hell
  17. Led Zeppelin - Black Dog
  18. The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Voodoo Chile
  19. Metallica - For Whom The Bell Tolls
  20. ZZ Top - La Grange
  21. Metallica - One
  22. Metallica - Seek And Destroy
  23. Pantera - Walk
  24. Slayer - Raining Blood
  25. Dio - Holy Diver
  26. Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit
  27. The Rolling Stones - (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
  28. Cream - Sunshine Of Your Love
  29. Megadeth - Holy Wars… The Punishment Due
  30. Pantera - Cowboys From Hell
  31. Chuck Berry - Johnny B. Goode
  32. Queen - Tie Your Mother Down
  33. Guns N’ Roses - Welcome to the Jungle
  34. Derek and the Dominos - Layla
  35. Eagles - Hotel California
  36. Rage Against The Machine - Killing In The Name
  37. AC/DC - Whole Lotta Rosie
  38. Pink Floyd - Money
  39. Van Halen - Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love
  40. Dire Straits - Money For Nothing
  41. The Kinks - You Really Got Me
  42. Judas Priest - Breaking The Law
  43. Lynyrd Skynyrd - Sweet Home Alabama
  44. Megadeth - Symphony Of Destruction
  45. Iron Maiden - Fear Of The Dark
  46. Rush - Tom Sawyer
  47. Led Zeppelin - Heartbreaker
  48. Metallica - Blackened
  49. Dire Straits - Sultans Of Swing
  50. Aerosmith - Walk This Way
  51. Iron Maiden - Phantom Of The Opera
  52. Metallica - The Four Horsemen
  53. Rush - The Spirit of Radio
  54. Scorpions - Rock You Like A Hurricane
  55. Michael Jackson - Beat It
  56. Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath
  57. The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Foxy Lady
  58. ZZ Top - Sharp Dressed Man
  59. Pink Floyd - Another Brick In The Wall 2
  60. Slayer - Angel Of Death
  61. Blue Öyster Cult - (Don’t Fear) The Reaper
  62. The Rolling Stones - Start Me Up
  63. Black Sabbath - Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
  64. The Beatles - Day Tripper
  65. The White Stripes - Seven Nation Army
  66. AC/DC - Riff Raff
  67. Deep Purple - Burn
  68. UFO - Doctor Doctor
  69. Queen - One Vision
  70. Steppenwolf - Born To Be Wild
  71. Kansas - Carry On Wayward Son
  72. Pantera - Cemetery Gates
  73. Rush - YYZ
  74. Black Sabbath - Symptom Of The Universe
  75. Yes - Roundabout
  76. Free - All Right Now
  77. Heart - Barracuda
  78. Van Halen - Unchained
  79. The Rolling Stones - Honky Tonk Woman
  80. Rage Against The Machine - Bulls On Parade
  81. The Cult - She Sells Sanctuary
  82. Tool - Schism
  83. Pearl Jam - Alive
  84. Lenny Kravitz - Are You Gonna Go My Way
  85. Joan Jett and the Blackhearts - I Love Rock N Roll
  86. Red Hot Chili Peppers - Under The Bridge
  87. UFO - Rock Bottom
  88. The Knack - My Sharona
  89. David Bowie - Rebel Rebel
  90. Rainbow - Since You Been Gone
  91. Rainbow - Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll
  92. Queens Of The Stone Age - No One Knows
  93. Jethro Tull - Locomotive Breath
  94. Red Hot Chilli Peppers - Californication
  95. Survivor - Eye Of The Tiger
  96. Eagles - Life In The Fast Lane
  97. Focus - Hocus Pocus
  98. Black Sabbath - Supernaut
  99. Soundgarden - Spoonman
  100. Mastodon - Blood And Thunder

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Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.