Led Zeppelin tops guitar riffs list

Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love is the greatest guitar riff of all time, as chosen by BBC Radio 2 listeners.

Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love has been named the greatest guitar riff of all time
Led Zeppelin's Whole Lotta Love has been named the greatest guitar riff of all time

In a list of the top 100, it beat rock legend contenders such as Metallica, Nirvana and The White Stripes to the top spot.

The top five guitar riffs are completed by Guns 'N' Roses' Sweet Child O' Mine at two, AC/DC's Back in Black at three, Deep Purple's Smoke On The Water at four and Derek And The Dominoes' Layla at five.

Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page said: "I'm knocked out by this because I didn't expect that to happen - there's been so many wonderful riffs along the way.

"I wanted a riff that really moved, that people would really get, and would bring a smile to their faces... but when I played it with the band, it really went into overdrive.

"There was this intent to have this riff and the movement of it, so it was menacing as well as quite sort of caressing."

A panel of music experts, including music critics, record producers and the station's presenters, helped produce the top 100, which spans generations.

Launched last month by Radio 2's Simon Mayo as part of Guitar Season, a poll asked listeners to cast their vote online for their favourite guitar riff.

Throughout today, listeners were treated to the complete top 100 countdown with the big reveal beginning with Will Gompertz's midnight show and culminating in Zoe Ball announcing numbers 30 through to the top spot in her special Bank Holiday show this afternoon.

Steve Levine, record producer and panelist, said: "Whole Lotta Love is one of the most important guitar riffs of the twentieth century - the moment you hear literally two notes of it, you know exactly what it is."