9 Awesome Acoustic Versions Of Classic Rock Songs

9 Awesome Acoustic Versions Of Classic Rock Songs



guns n roses acoustic

 Guns N' Roses acoustic at The Limelight, New York City, 1988. Photo By Larry Marano/Getty Images.

There are definitely some common qualities required for a song to qualify as a ‘classic’ - timeless, universal and iconic all come to mind. Classic hits have an ability to transcend generation and genre to give us something we can all (sort of) agree on.

Over the era’s, production styles have been through as many trends as jeans. But, strip back the experimental mayhem of the 70s, the polish of the 80s, the grit of the 90s and you’ll find the classics, from Axl Rose to Tom Petty, could easily be from any era. 

So, unwind with this list of awesome acoustic versions of classic rock songs, perfect for tuning in and zoning out. 

1. “Hotel California” – The Eagles

Introduced with impeccable, flamenco-flavoured finger picking on the acoustic guitar, complemented by a sexy djembe and shaker groove that brings a seductive spice to one of the most well-known classic rock songs of all time. 

2. “Learning To Fly” – Tom Petty 

The crowd goes wild with recognition after just two chords and can’t help but join in, providing a human hand clap backbeat under Tom’s tender, husky voice that is beautifully prominent in this stripped back rendition. 

3. “Wish You Were Here” – Pink Floyd 

Coughs, sniffles and all, this is a truly raw version of this moving hit song. Delivered with hell-bent intent, somehow the power and vulnerability underpinning this tack manage to both shine with equal brightness. 

4. “Needle And The Damage Done” – Neil Young

Neil’s words of clarity and pain are at the forefront of this acoustic delivery, honouring the age-old art of storytelling at the heart of country music. 

5. “That’s The Way” – Led Zeppelin 

It’s a rare treat to hear these powerhouse performers dial back the intensity notch for a moment of sparseness. But, these consummate pros prove that even without all the bells and whistles they’re just as captivating and hypnotic. 

6. "The Times Are A Changin'" - Bob Dylan

Every artist strives to write that universally timeless song. One that will be as relevant and poignant to every generation to come as it was to you on the day you wrote it. This is one of those songs, the message so clear in its purest form. 

7. “Patience” – Guns ‘N Roses

You could be forgiven for thinking that the Beatles were behind the beautifully intricate and delicate introduction to this classic metal ballad. But no, it’s some of rock ‘n roll’s most notorious bad boys showing us that deep down we’re all pretty soft and squishy on the inside. 

8. “Nothing Else Matters” – Metallica 

James Hetfield’s restraint is mesmerising. Complete with a dynamic string section highlighting the emotionally driven lyrics, this acoustic version is one you feel as much as hear.

9. “Teach Your Children” – Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Words of infinite wisdom delivered to an infectious two-step groove by the veritable supergroup. In its simplest form, this song should be made mandatory listening for all new parents.

You can't argue with the classics and our Classic Rock Radio playlist literally has hundreds of them! Almost 20 hours of timeless, heartfelt anthems that'll make you remember when... 

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