100 Greatest Songs From 1971

Criteria: Songs listed are from Rock 'n' Roll and related sub-genres. Rankings are based on initial and lasting popularity and on acclaim received from critics and musicians.

Note: Yearly song lists go by earliest 'release date' (Single, Album, or Country of first release). Not necessarily the year a song peaked in the U.S. charts.

  1. Stairway to Heaven - Led Zeppelin
  2. Imagine - John Lennon
  3. What's Going On - Marvin Gaye
  4. Let's Stay Together - Al Green
  5. Maggie May - Rod Stewart
  6. American Pie - Don McLean
  7. Won't Get Fooled Again - The Who
  8. Brown Sugar - Rolling Stones
  9. Just My Imagination - Temptations
10. Family Affair - Sly and the Family Stone
11. Theme from "Shaft" - Isaac Hayes
12. Me and Bobby McGee - Janis Joplin
13. Baba O'Riley - The Who
14. It's Too Late - Carole King
15. Riders On the Storm - Doors
16. Ain't No Sunshine - Bill Withers
17. Rock and Roll - Led Zeppelin
18. Changes - David Bowie
19. Black Dog - Led Zeppelin
20. Tired of Being Alone - Al Green
21. Mercy Mercy Me - Marvin Gaye
22. Bang a Gong (Get It On) - T. Rex
23. Roundabout - Yes
24. Aqualung - Jethro Tull
25. Long Cool Woman (In a Black Dress) - Hollies
26. Have You Seen Her - Chi-Lites
27. Tiny Dancer - Elton John
28. Respect Yourself - Staple Singers
29. Without You - Nilsson
30. Smiling Faces Sometimes - Undisputed Truth
31. Behind Blue Eyes - The Who
32. LA Woman - Doors
33. Mr. Big Stuff - Jean Knight
34. Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) - Marvin Gaye
35. A Horse With No Name - America
36. Locomotive Breath - Jethro Tull
37. Rock Steady - Aretha Franklin
38. Wild Horses - Rolling Stones
39. Life on Mars? - David Bowie
40. Take Me Home, Country Roads - John Denver
41. Vincent - Don McLean
42. You've Got A Friend - ames Taylor
43. Happy Xmas (War Is Over) - John & Yoko & Plastic Ono Band
44. Slipping into Darkness - War
45. Superstar - Carpenters
46. Clean Up Woman - Betty Wright
47. Betcha By Golly Wow - Stylistics
48. Hocus Pocus - Focus
49. Morning Has Broken - Cat Stevens
50. I Feel the Earth Move - Carole King
51. You Are Everything - Stylistics
52. Love Her Madly - Doors
53. It Don't Come Easy - Ringo Starr
54. Stay with Me - Faces
55. Jealous Guy - John Lennon
56. Never Can Say Goodbye - Jackson 5
57. Whatcha See Is Whatcha Get - Dramatics
58. When the Levee Breaks - Led Zeppelin
59. If - Bread
60. Uncle Albert/Admiral Halsey - Paul & Linda McCartney
61. Maggot Brain - Funkadelic
62. How Can You Mend a Broken Heart - Bee Gees
63. Can't You Hear Me Knocking - Rolling Stones
64. Sylvia's Mother - Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show
65. Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves - Cher
66. Thin Line Between Love and Hate - Persuaders
67. I've Seen All Good People - Yes
68. I Am, I Said - Neil Diamond
69. Got To Be There - Michael Jackson
70. Rainy Days and Mondays - Carpenters
71. Peace Train - Cat Stevens
72. Case of You - Joni Mitchell
73. I Gotcha - Joe Tex
74. Spanish Harlem - Aretha Franklin
75. Mercedes Benz - Janis Joplin
76. Day After Day - Badfinger
77. Wild Night - Van Morrison
78. Hot Pants - James Brown
79. Jeepster - T. Rex
80. If You Really Love Me - Stevie Wonder
81. Another Day - Paul McCartney
82. In the Rain - Dramatics
83. Brand New Key - Melanie
84. Indian Reservation - Raiders
85. Want Ads - Honey Cone
86. Coat of Many Colors - Dolly Parton
87. I'd Love to Change the World - Ten Years After
88. She's a Lady - Tom Jones
89. Treat Her Like a Lady - Cornelius Brothers & Sister Rose
90. So Far Away - Carole King
91. Grandma's Hands - Bill Withers
92. Baby I'm-a Want You - Bread
93. Echoes - Pink Floyd
94. Baby Blue - Badfinger
95. Drowning in the Sea of Love - Joe Simon
96. Hold Your Head Up - Argent
97. Famous Blue Raincoat - Leonard Cohen
98. Sweet City Woman - Stampeders
99. The Low Spark of High Heeled Boys - Traffic
100. Levon - Elton John
20 more worth mentioning.
101. Going to California - Led Zeppelin
102. Bridge Over Troubled Water - Aretha Franklin
103. Never Been To Spain - Three Dog Night
104. All Day Music - War
105. Don't Pull Your Love - Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds
106. Bitch - Rolling Stones
107. Statesboro Blues - Allman Brothers Band
108. Bargain - The Who
109. Make It Funky - James Brown
110. Hot Rod Lincoln - Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen
111. An Old Fashioned Love Song - Three Dog Night
112. Do You Know What I Mean - Lee Michaels
113. The Story in Your Eyes - Moody Blues
114. Funky Nassau - Beginning Of The End
115. Reason To Believe - Rod Stewart
116. I Just Want To Celebrate - Rare Earth
117. No One To Depend On - Santana
118. Don't Knock My Love - Wilson Pickett
119. Scorpio - Dennis Coffey & the Detroit Guitar Band
120. She's Not Just Another Woman - Eighth Day
DigitalDreamDoor Editor Picks for 1971
An unheralded great record from 1971
Brian's choice -
* Oh Me Oh My - Aretha Franklin
Lew's choice -
* Change Partners - Stephen Stills
Bruce's choice -
* Girls In The City - Esquires
Adam's choice -
* Oak Fire - Lee Michaels
Brett's choice -
* Bubble Gum The Blues/I'm A Cruiser - Emitt Rhodes
Last Updated: 2020-04-14