My 100 Very Best Blues Songs of All Time
|1||Hoochie Coochie Man||Muddy Waters|
|2||The Thrill is Gone||B.B. King|
|3||Me And The Devil Blues||Robert Johnson|
|4||Stone Crazy||Buddy Guy|
|5||I’d Rather Go Blind||Etta James|
|6||I’m Tore Down||Freddie King|
|7||Call It Stormy Monday||T-Bone Walker|
|8||Boogie Chillen’||John Lee Hooker|
|9||Red House||Jimi Hendrix|
|10||Smokestack Lightning||Howlin’ Wolf|
|11||Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out||Bessie Smith|
|12||Bell Bottom Blues||Derek and the Dominoes|
|13||Still Got The Blues||Gary Moore|
|14||Mustang Sally||Wilson Pickett|
|15||Ball N’ Chain||Big Mama Thornton|
|16||Born Under A Bad Sign||Albert King|
|17||Hideaway||John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers|
|18||Dust My Broom||Elmore James|
|19||Hold On, I’m Coming||Eric Clapton|
|20||The Little Red Rooster||Willie Dixon|
|21||Tell Mama (Single)||Etta James|
|22||Down In The Hole||The Rolling Stones|
|23||Got My Mojo Working||Muddy Waters|
|24||A Little Less Conversation||Guitar Shorty|
|25||The Things That I Used to Do||Guitar Slim|
|26||Life By The Drop||Stevie Ray Vaughan|
|27||Damn Right I’ve Got The Blues||Buddy Guy|
|28||Boom Boom||John Lee Hooker|
|29||Bright Lights||Gary Clark, Jr|
|30||Still Rainin’||Jonny Lang|
|31||Sweet Home Chicago||Peter Green|
|32||Thing Called Love||Bonnie Raitt|
|33||Green Onions||Booker T. & The MG’s|
|34||The Midnight Special||Leadbelly|
|35||Mess Around||Ray Charles|
|36||Little Wing||Eric Clapton/Steve Winwood|
|37||Bad Penny||Rory Gallagher|
|38||Slow Train||Joe Bonamassa|
|39||Paying the Cost to Be the Boss||B.B. King|
|40||Farther on Up the Road||Bobby “Blue” Bland|
|41||Mannish Boy||Muddy Waters|
|42||Trouble No More||Allman Brothers Band|
|43||Highway 49||George Thorogood|
|44||Hellhound On My Trail||Robert Johnson|
|45||Help Me||Sonny Boy Williamson II|
|46||A Man Of Many Words||Buddy Guy|
|47||Don’t Think Twice||Susan Tedeschi|
|48||Everyday I Have the Blues||B.B. King|
|49||Going Down||Freddie King|
|52||Pinetop’s Boogie Woogie||Pinetop Perkins|
|53||Trouble In Mind||Big Walter Hornton|
|55||Whisky And Wimmen||John Lee Hooker|
|56||Five Long Years||Ike and Tina Turner|
|57||Love Me Like a Man||Bonnie Raitt|
|58||Black Rose||Eric Clapton|
|59||Blues Boys Tune||B.B. King|
|60||True Lies||Kenny Wayne Shepherd|
|61||Sacred Ground||John Mooney|
|62||Minnie the Moocher||Cab Caloway|
|63||Everybody Needs Somebody To Love||Solomon Burke|
|65||Sinner’s Prayer||Ray Charles|
|66||Statesboro Blues||Allman Brothers Band|
|69||Walking by Myself||Jimmy Rogers|
|70||Messing with the Blues||James Brown and the Famous Flames|
|71||Born Blind||Sonny Boy Williamson II|
|72||Lovin’ In My Baby’s Eyes||Taj Mahal|
|73||Double Trouble||Otis Rush|
|74||Give Me Back My Wig||Hound Dog Taylor|
|75||You Shook Me||Willie Dixon|
|76||Killing Floor||Howlin’ Wolf|
|77||Rock Me Mamma||Sonny Terry|
|78||I Ain’t Drunk||Ike Turner|
|79||My Head’s in Mississippi||ZZ Top|
|80||Think It Over||Dave Hole|
|81||We’re Gonna Make It (Single Version)||Little Milton|
|82||Blues Before Sunrise||Eric Clapton|
|83||You Can’t Judge a Book by the Cover||Bo Diddley|
|84||It Hurts Me Too||Paul Butterfield Band|
|85||I Just Want to Make Love to You||Willie Dixon|
|86||Going Down to the Ocean||Chris James and Patrick Ryan|
|87||Center of Attention||Tommy Castro and the Painkillers|
|88||Reconsider Baby||Lowell Fulson|
|89||You Don’t Exist Any More||Lil’ Ed & The Blues Imperials|
|90||Shame Shame Shame||Jimmy Reed|
|92||I Don’t Believe a Word You Say||Ben Harper, Charlie Musselwhite|
|93||Cherry Red Wine||Luther Allison|
|94||That’s Why I’m Crying||Koko Taylor|
|95||Crow Jane Blues||Sonny Terry|
|96||Blue and Lonesome||Rolling Stones|
|97||Black Cat Bone||Albert Collins/Johnny Copeland|
|98||One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer||John Lee Hooker|
|99||The Sky is Crying||Stevie Ray Vaughan|
|100||Six Strings Down||Jimmie Vaughn|
See and Learn more about the Top 25 songs on the video and wiki page.
Last updated 1/2017.
Some more good ZZ Top blues songs:
Just Got Back From Baby’s
Guess we’re not Bo Diddly fan here
Thanks for the note. Bo did make the newly updated list with “You Can’t Judge a Book by Looking at the Cover”. The list was just posted. What would you have suggested for a Bo Diddley tune?
Great list. Looking forward to the 2017 update!
Some thoughts: in the Wilson Pickett/Ray Charles style, Eddie Floyd’s Knock on Wood is my runaway favorite.
For SR Vaughn I think I would rate Tightrope higher than some of these.
Before you finalize the list, listen to Paul Butterfield.
Looking forward to the 2017 update!
It’s been a year since the last post..are you still working on the list?
Muddy is my favorite, but I love J.B. Hutto too.
I’ll be checking back.
Thanks for the note. It is my holiday project. Please check back! Thanks for the JB Hutto recommendation.
Kind of funny if you read this list you’d think WOMEN never did great blues. Funny that.
Thanks for the note. I love the Women of The Blues! A few more are represented on the soon to be updated list.
hi i REALLY need ur help, Terry. can u please tell me what the title of the bluesy (i think) song played during the intro to the LC’s Bar-B-Q scene in the Kansas City episode of Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations series? i so can’t get over it. it starts with a tambourine i think then followed by a guitar intro.
I found the episode and riff you are referring to. Did not recognize it or saw that it mentioned in the credits. I am on it though. Please let me know if you figure it first. Thanks!
I like your list bro. And fuck the naysayers. Music is a subjective experience and the only opinion that matters when making a list of your favorites is your own. Thanks for sharing it. I reckon you’d enjoy “Gin Soaked Boy” by Tom Waits from his Swordfishtrombones album. You should also check out “Green Limousine” by Aussie band The Badloves from their ’93 debut Get On Board and “Old Stray Dogs & Jesus” by Paul Thorn from his Too Blessed To Be Stressed album.
Hillbilly, Thanks for the new ones! Did you see that the Badloves dropped a new album the end of October? Enjoy!
Missin some songs here:
Deep Purple – Lazy
Jimi Hendrix – hear my train a comin
Zz top – Tush
Steve Miller Band – Mercury Blues
Joe Bonamassa – High Water Everywhere
Rory Gallagher – Million Miles Away
Rory Gallagher – Cradle Rock
Johnny Winter – Highway 69 Revisited
Tony Joe White – Steamy Windows
SRV – Pride ‘n Joy
Taste – Sugar Mama
Muddy Waters – Rolling Stone
Gary Moore – Oh Pretty Woman
Robert Johnson – Walking Blues
Eric Clapton – Layla (acoustic)
Just to name a few… But its also about personal taste.
And.. Blue Jean Blues is a zz top original as far as i know. Just as little wing & voodoo chile are hendrix’ songs. Would be more fair to credit the original artists!!
Thank you for providing a playlist that made for a good day. Although the Blues list was set up to refer to a favorite version/performance of the tune – you are right that credit is due. Thanks!
And I never fail to be stunned and amazed by the number of lists that have NO
mention of the late, great Ray Charles! Really, people?!
Thanks Rhonda. That was a great list – especially Shannon Curfman – that was a new one for me. As for Ray, I am a fan and he appears twice on the Blues list. Thanks!
I’m thinking there are a lot of artists that aren’t represented on this
list, but rather than spoon feeding you songs I’ll just give you
some names…..I’m sure if you give them a fair chance you’ll find
some new favorite songs to add to your list.
Kenny Wayne Shephard
Shannon Curfman (especially her 1st album, when she was only 14)
((Might I say simply “WOW”)
After I post this I’ll probably think of a half dozen more but this is a good start
i think that double trouble, originally by Otis Rush and re-recorded by several others, should be on this list.
Thank you. Keep an eye out for the new list coming out around the holidays.
Terry (aka Main Offender)
Here’s a couple of tunes you may want to consider…
Big Pete Pearson – Worried About My Baby
Chris James & Patrick Rynn – Going Down To The Ocean
Gary Moore – Oh Pretty Woman (ft. Albert King)
George Thorogood & The Destroyers – Bad To The Bone
Joe Bonamassa – Wild About You Baby
Koko Taylor – Mother Nature (ft. Carey Bell)
Mojo Buford – Pickin’ Rags
Thanks for the note. I picked up two new discoveries from the top of your list. Heard a cut or two on various podcasts, but really enjoyed the
Trouble Don’t Last
album from Chris James and Patrick. Joe Bonamassa is under represented on the original list. I agree.
New list out the first of the year. Been a labor of love.
Thanks again for the suggestions.
Terry (aka Main Offender)
The music list löök Awesome but i cant listening to them BUMMER!!!!!
Thanks for the note. The next list will have some technology behind it that will hopefully allow this.
I welcome any of your favorites to consider on version 2.0.
Terry (aka Main Offender)
I have always loved “Just ’cause you got the blues, don’t mean you gotta sing” by Savoy Brown
Thanks for the note. Definitely a consideration – and thanks for bringing Savoy Brown back on my radar.
Terry (aka Main Offender)
The Rolling Stones are blues wanna be’s….they shouldn’t be on this list
Appreciate the note. It is unlikely we will ever become friends. The Rolling Stones absolutely belong on this list and I believe some of the legendary bluesman would agree. They are solely responsible for leading me to the genre and my love of the music. They will remain here.
I still welcome (and am very curious) to hear your suggestions for the new list. Thanks.
Rory Gallagher – Messin’ with the Kid
Taste – What’s Going On
Taste – Same old Story
Taste – Catfish
Rory – Bullfrog Blues
Rory – In Your Town
Rory – Moonchild
Guess what – I’m a Rory Gallagher fan.
Appreciate the new tunes to listen to. I have gone deep with Rory over the past several months – in part to your comment.
I’ve long been a casual fan of the Blues, and now find myself listening more and more to it. Your list is awesome, and has introduced me to some very cool blues tunes. You can’t possibly satisfy everyone with a list like this as several gems will get left off. Thanks many times over, especially for introducing me to folks I never heard of before like Susan Tedeschi and A C Reed. Perhaps for your update you can add something from the much maligned Ike Turner.
Appreciate the kind words! (and the Ike Turner suggestion).
New list will hopefully be unveiled by the new year.
B.B. King is the best for me
I completely agree.
main offender – respect… solid list
Appreciate it. Anything missing from your perspective?
Works for me! Never heard “Down in The Hole” by the Stones before …. Listening to it now. Meh -)
Like the list, but I’m always surprised that Kenny Wayne Shepherd gets forgotten about. Blue on Black is one of the cooler blues rock songs out there.
Andy. Agreed on Kenny Wayne Shepard. He has a place on the soon to be released update to the list. Would welcome any others.
Actually I’m DJ that plays blues every Monday on my show and this list isn’t that bad, sure some best of are missing but who can actually do a list like this and miss a few?
Thanks man! I am in the process of tweaking the list this year. Would welcome your thoughts on what is missing – and any tips on new blues artists to give a listen to.
really no MARVIN SEASE, TINSLEY ELLIS, SHUGGIE OTIS, GUITAR SHORTY REALLY!!!!!
Thanks for the note. Really. Re-working the list now. I will dial them up again for another listen. Tinsley and Guitar Shorty were already on the short list. Thanks.
Leaving out the genius of Peter Green with Fleetwood Mac from this list is a major oversight. Could be any of the following: “Drifitng, I Loved Another Woman, Jumping at Shadows, Man of the World, Ooh Baby, Tell Me All Things You Do, The World Keep on Turning, World’s In A Tangle, etc…” Continually overlooked! Susan Tedeschi is cool, but …. three entries???
Thanks for the comment. I am in the midst of an overhaul of the list and thank you for pointing out Peter Green. The old Fleetwood Mac deserves a spot – or two. As for Susan Tedeschi, a definite soft spot for her from her early years in Boston. Thanks again.
How could you omit Etta James’ “I’d rather go blind”?
Burgher, thanks for the note. I was blind, and have played this one at least a dozen times since your comment. It will be on version 2.0.
everyone’s list is going to be different…..there are probably a dozen that should be in everyone’s top 25, but from there it’s a crapshoot. I cannot imagine a top 100 without Alvin Lee, Joe Bonamassa, or Bob Dylan. No one though can really criticize the list
and there are 101 songs
Thanks for the note and reading all 101. (101 so I could work in a second Stormy Monday – a favorite Allman Brothers Version)
For a blues purist such as yourself, this is not your list. It captures an assortment of the bluesier offerings from soul, R&B and even rock. All influenced by the blues, but the songs are not all able to be pigeonholed in the blues genre. I am ok with that.
After five years, I am on a project reworking the list. There are some duds in there.
I welcome your thoughts. Thanks,
and stormy monday is in there twice
this guy has no idea what he is talking about mustang sally is not a blues song
Mustang Sally has the classic blues progression so it is a blues rock song.
Why not? This is clearly a song using the Blues scheme in Chords (during verse1+2) and lyrics line A + Line A + Line B during the first verse1 – but maybe purists are right is more a Rhythm & Blues Song Than a Blues one.
You way off
Five years later, I am working on an update, I agree a few favorites at the time need to go.
Welcome your thoughts.