The 200 Best Rock Ballads Of All Time

Popular Rock Ballads

Ballads in rock music have been popular since the emergence of rock. Inspired by folk and blues ballads, rock ballads gained prominence in the early 1970s and have been a staple in music ever since. The first rock ballad was written by the English rock band “Led Zeppelin” and “Stairway to Heaven.” In every decade, rock ballads have evolved.

In the early years of rock, ballads were often played with acoustic instruments. From the 80s on, electric appliances were also used. Power ballads became incredibly popular in the 80s, and this trend continues today.

But what actually is a rock ballad?

A typical rock song with electric guitar, bass, drums, and intense vocals becomes a power ballad when it comes to the themes of love, Sadness or other big feelings go. So a ballad is a song that tells a story about an emotional situation.

We have divided the countless love songs of rock into five categories. First of all, let’s introduce you to the most popular power ballads. Then we will introduce you to songs that are perfect for a wedding.

The following are songs for a karaoke evening, and of course, we have also divided the rock ballads by decades.

(For each list, we’ve created a Spotify playlist for you with all the songs listed here.)

The best rock ballads of all time

01. I Would Do Anything For Love by Meat Loaf

I Would Do Anything For Love is one of the most famous and popular rock ballads. The ballad impresses with a meaningful text and rousing music. With this song, Meat Loaf has shown great feelings and shows a very sensitive side.

The rock ballad is about how you would do anything for love, but if one thing goes against your morals, you may take that step for love as well. The song shows that you don’t have to go over dead bodies for the greatest love of all times and that you can remain true to yourself despite everything!

02. Nothing Else Matters by Metallica

This slow rock ballad shows a lot of feeling and immediately gets under your skin. The song is about being alone on the road and missing someone at home very much. Nevertheless, the song is addressed to a specific person and is supposed to represent a connection to a higher power.

So it’s about much more than missing a lover. The lyrics should remind you of the essential things in life and what it is worth fighting for. A powerful song that you can’t get enough of!

03. We Are The Champions by Queen

Probably the most famous song by Queen is We Are The Champions. The rocking song inspires numerous people after competitions and makes them happy. Originally it was not expected that the song would lead to worldwide success.

But We Are The Champions has become a real anthem and is also used in numerous TV shows, etc. used. The song was written by Freddie Mercury, who wanted the audience to feel the emotion of the shot to sing along to bring. Freddie has certainly achieved his goal because you have to sing along with the hymn almost automatically!

04. Knockin’ On Heavens Door by Bob Dylan

Knockin’ On Heavens Door is also one of the most popular rock ballads of all time and immediately gets under your skin. The song convinces with its great lyrics and fantastic music.

The song’s lyrics refer to the emotions of the aging sheriff Baker, who is shot and awaits death in the presence of his beloved wife. Here, a man reviews his life in the face of death. Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door is basically a very sing-along song sad song.

The famous music magazine Rolling Stone included the song in its list of the 500 best rock songs.

05. Love Me Tender by Elvis Presley

With Love Me Tender, Elvis Presley proves not only that he can sing but that he also understands great feelings. The gentle love song offers everything that rock ballads must bring with them: Love, pain, and passion.

Love Me Tender became one of his biggest hits and is still played on the radio today. The lyrics and the melody of the song are simply timeless. Even today, we continue to experience new Cover versions of the song.

With the song, Elvis has written music history in any case and created a brilliant lyric, which is exceedingly romantic and says so much.

06. Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd

Wish You Were Here is also one of the most famous rock ballads. Pink Floyd managed a mega-hit with the song, which became a timeless classic. Another song that alludes to missing another person very much.

You imagine what the other person is doing right now, and you want them by your side. Probably a lot of people can understand these thoughts as well. Pink Floyd hit the bull’s eye with this song anyway.

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07. We Don’t Need Another Hero by Tina Turner

This song made world history. We Don’t Need Another Hero was taken from the movie Thunderdome and inspired many people. The song is that we don’t need another hero on earth; we should learn from our mistakes and live.

The music and the lyrics behind it are moving and especially meaningful. With this song, Tina Turner achieved her first and only number 1 hit in Germany in 1985. In the end, Tina sings: “Give it all you’ve got, or leave it.”

08. Candle In The Wind by Elton John

With Candle In The Wind, Elton John originally dedicated himself to the life of Marilyn Monroe. The song convinces with a great melody and very thoughtful lyrics.

Elton wonders with the song how Marilyn Monroe must have felt. Its lyrics address the fact that she was, in fact, a very lonely person whose life was lived like a candle in the wind. Later he dedicated the song with new lyrics to Princess Diana and performed it at her wedding Funeral.

So today, you can find two versions of the song, which refer once to Marilyn and Diana.

09. November Rain by Guns N’ Roses

November Rain is also one of the most beautiful rock ballads. The song was written by Axl Rose, the singer and frontman of the band Guns N’ Roses. The song has a length of about 9 minutes.

November Rain became probably one of the band’s most legendary songs and broke a digital record a quarter of a century after its first release. The accompanying music video has over a billion views on YouTube by now. The band has probably done a lot right with this song and can be happy about a real-world success!

10. I’m With You by Avril Lavigne

Also, this song belongs to the most beautiful rock ballads of all time. With this song, the Canadian singer Avril Lavigne achieved her international breakthrough. The young singer convinces with the song with a great voice and an excellent text.

The music is moving, the lyrics are understandable for many people, and the voice is excellent. What more could you want from a rock ballad? This song can also be considered timeless and still inspires numerous people today. I’m With You describes that everything doesn’t matter as long as you feel connected to a person, even if you don’t know him.

11. Sometimes When We Touch by Dan Hill

Sometimes When We Touch is also a wonderful rock ballad that has been extremely popular for decades. This song is also timeless and especially meaningful in its lyrics. There is hardly a person who does not know the song.

The romantic ballad is often used for Weddings, Engagements or other romantic celebrations used and is just beautiful! Dan Hill achieved a hit with the song and wrote short music history. Sometimes When We Touch is one of the music of the most romantic ballads has to offer.

12. Bed Of Roses by Bon Jovi

Bed Of Roses is one of the most famous songs of Bon Jovi. His unique rock voice is just as convincing as the lyrics and the brilliant music.

Numerous women dream of a bed of roses and Jon Bon Jovi, who would like to put his love in it. The song was written after a wild night and describes Bon Jovi’s feelings the next morning. This song also became a worldwide success and made sure that Bon Jovi could also show his romantic side for a change.

13. Alone by Heart

Alone describes a situation in which you are secretly in love and would like to tell your crush, but somehow you don’t dare. The song describes that you fall madly in love at some point and have never felt the way you feel now.

The more critical it becomes for you, the more difficult it is to admit that you are in love. We all know the fear of rejection, and most of the time, we are terrified of it. Sometimes this silence goes on for years, and you almost go crazy yourself.

Also, this text can certainly understand many people and thus well put themselves in the singer’s situation.

14. Total Eclipse Of The Heart by Bonnie Tyler

This enchanting ballad is one of the world’s most famous songs by Bonnie Tyler. With Total Eclipse Of The Heart, Bonnie proves that she has a lot of emotion in her voice and convinces with fantastic music and unique lyrics. The ballad can be seen as a real longing ballad and contains an incredible amount of passion and pain at the same time.

The lyrics describe that you can get sick of love and be torn apart. Total Eclipse Of The Heart is, in any case, a song for eternity!

15. Underneath Your Clothes by Shakira

This romantic pop-rock ballad by Shakira inspired numerous people worldwide. Underneath Your Clothes is one of the first songs that Shakira wrote and sang in English.

The artist scored a worldwide hit with the song and provided a harmonious, stylish rock ballad that people still love to listen to today. The lyrics of Underneath Your Clothes are a bit unusual on closer inspection, but very romantic and something different for a change. The singer describes that it’s not the external things, clothes, money, and fame, that are important, but exactly what’s underneath all that: The person himself.

16. Bring Me To Life by Evanescence

Evanescence achieved its breakthrough with the breathtaking song Bring Me To Life. The gothic rock ballad is one of the most impressive dark ballads of all time and combines the lovely voice of Amy Lee with a rocking sound and a yearning, crying for redemption lyrics.

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Amy Lee and her band achieved an international breakthrough with this song and still enjoy its popularity. With this song, Evanescence focused on the dark side of the soul and the hidden passions and feelings. The song can be seen as a cry for help from a loved one or even higher power.

17. You Give Love A Bad Name by Bon Jovi

You Give Love A Bad Name is one of those songs that always likes to be covered. The song became a worldwide hit and is still very popular today.

You Give Love A Bad Name is about falling in love with someone who doesn’t deserve love. Many people fall in love with the seemingly wrong people and are anything but happy during this time. Who knows the suffering in love or. If you know someone because of his love, you will surely take this song immediately into your heart!

18. The Sound Of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel

The brilliant song The Sound Of Silence is a worldwide-known rock ballad that takes your breath away. This rather quiet, contemplative ballad is about the thoughts that come to you when you’re alone with yourself and wandering in the darkness. The song reminds me a bit of the western sound.

Even today, this song is very relatable for many people. The Sound Of Silence is more current than ever and can also be considered timeless. Great ballad, unique lyrics, and a great singer!

19. Tainted Love by Marilyn Manson

Marilyn Manson used this song, a classic by Gloria Jones. The song is about the fact that love can sometimes be poisoned.

This song is also about how you only later realize what a person is really like. Tainted Love convinces, especially with the lyrics. Marilyn Manson managed to give the song an eerie, beautiful touch and convince the successful rock song.

20. Poison by Alice Cooper

Poison by Alice Cooper also wrote music history. The song convinces with its unique artist, the successful music, and the unique lyrics.

This song is also one of the timeless songs of the music industry, which have lost nothing of their magic even today. Alice Cooper succeeded with the song a mega-hit.

The most popular rock ballads of all time:

Each song is linked to the corresponding music video via the title.

21.Keep on Loving YouREO Speedwagon
23.I Don’t Want To Miss A ThingAerosmith
24.Every Breath You TakeThe Police
25.With or Without YouU2
26.Open ArmsJourney
27.Can’t Fight This FeelingReo Speedwagon
28.Somebody To LoveQueen
29.God Only KnowsBeach Boys
30.Tiny DancerElton John
31.Reason To LiveKiss
32.Chasing CarsSnow Patrol
33.Free BirdLynyrd Skynyrd
34.Here Without You3 Doors Down
35.Two Out Of Three Ain’t BadMeat Loaf
36.Love BitesDef Leppard
37.The RoseBette Midler
38.You’re The InspirationChicago
39.ImagineJohn Lennon
40.I Want to Know What Love IsForeigner
41.I Remember YouSkid Row
42.Love Song The Cure
43.I Don’t Want to Miss a ThingAerosmith
44.Love Me TenderElvis Presley
45.I Won’t Hold You BackToto
46.Dust In The WindKansas
47.Father of MineEverclear
48.Is This LoveWhitesnake
49.Who Wants To Live Forever Queen
50.Bridge Over Troubled WaterSimon & Garfunkel
51.I’m YoursJason Mraz
52.Glory Of LovePeter Cetera
53.MapsYeah Yeah Yeahs
55.Stairway to HeavenLed Zeppelin
56.Love BitesDef Leppard
57.Love Is Only A FeelingThe Darkness
58.Fly To The AngelsSlaughter
59.Hard To Say I’m SorryChicago
60.YesterdayThe Beatles
61.The Deeper the LoveWhitesnake
62.I Found SomeoneCher
64.You’ve Lost That Lovin’ FeelingRighteous Brothers
67.Let It BeBeatles
68.ApologizeThe Last Vegas
69.Never Say GoodbyeBon Jovi
70.Piano ManBilly Joel
71.Hey There DelilahPlain White T’s
72.Every Rose Has Its ThornPoison
73.Tears in HeavenEric Clapton
74.Wild HorsesRolling Stones
75.No Matter WhatPapa Roach
76.When I See You SmileBad English
77.As Tears Go ByRolling Stones
78.CryingRoy Orbison
79.The One That You LoveAir Supply
80.In My LifeThe Beatles
81.HeavenBryan Adams
82.One of UsJoan Osborne
83.All I Have To Do Is DreamEverly Brothers
84.All By MyselfEric Carmen
85.Running ScaredRoy Orbison
86.The Only ExceptionParamore
87.Can’t Help Falling In LoveElvis Presley
88.I’ll Stand By YouPretenders
89.American Pie Don McLean
90.HomeEdward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
91.Unchained MelodyRighteous Brothers
92.Goodbye To RomanceOzzy Osbourne
93.Wonderful TonightEric Clapton
94.Candle in the Wind 1997Elton John
95.Without You Badfinger
96.Wind Of ChangeScorpions
97.HurtNine Inch Nails
98.Only The LonelyRoy Orbison
99.AlwaysBon Jovi
100.The FlameCheap Trick
101.You’re BeautifulJames Blunt
102.You and MeLifehouse
103.AngieRolling Stones
104.It Must Have Been LoveRoxette
105.StayLisa Loeb
106.Wherever You Will GoThe Calling
107.DanielElton John
108.Hey JudeBeatles
109.I Miss YouBlink 182
110.Broken WingsMr. Mister
111.The ReasonHoobastank
112.You’re All I NeedWhite Lion
113.Never Tear Us ApartINXS

Die besten Rockballaden für die Hochzeit:

Rock-Liebeslieder sind in den letzten Yearen bei Hochzeiten immer beliebter geworden. Slow rock ballads evoke special memories. The thrill of being in your partner’s arms while slow dancing at the wedding is a special moment.

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It’s a beautiful feeling to dance with your partner when the lights on the dance floor are shining dimly. When love songs are played at a wedding, you can feel the passion in every line. Are you looking for more wedding songs?

Read also our article: The most beautiful wedding songs of all time.

Each song is linked to the corresponding music video via the title.

1.Take My Breath AwayBerlin
2.Marry MeTrain
3.You and MeLifehouse
4.Glory of LovePeter Cetera
5.You Make Lovin FunFleetwood Mac
6.You Are So BeautifulJoe Cocker
7.Love of a LifetimeFirehouse
8.Love Song Tesla
9.Up Where We Belong Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes
10.Nothing Else MattersMetallica
11.With Or Without YouU2
13.Thank YouLed Zeppelin
14.You and IScorpions
15.Can’t Stop Loving YouVan Halen

The most popular rock ballads for karaoke:

Singing love songs on a karaoke night can create a romantic mood quite quickly. If you’re looking for more karaoke songs, be sure to check out our article on the best songs to sing along.

Each song is linked to the corresponding music video via the title.

1.AlwaysBon Jovi
3.Only the LonelyThe Motels
4.Love Song The Cure
5.I’ll Stand By YouThe Pretenders
6.Free FallingTom Petty
8.She Loves YouThe Beatles
9.I Got You BabeSonny & Cher
10.It Must Have Been LoveRoxette
11.Keep on Loving You REO Speedwagon
12.Bed Of RosesBon Jovi
13.Every Breath You TakeThe Police
14.The Sweetest ThingU2
15.Jack & DianeJohn Mellencamp
16.DisarmSmashing Pumpkins

Rock ballads from the 2000s:

Since 2000 some new rock songs have been created. Many modern rock love songs combine acoustic instruments with electric instruments, creating a unique sound. Different musical genres influence modern rock bands, which can also be heard in contemporary rock.

A new soundscape emerged and this is also reflected in rock ballads. Discover more Songs from the 2000s!

Each song is linked to the corresponding music video via the title.

1.I’m YoursJason Mraz
2.The ReasonHoobastank
3.My Happy EndingAvril Lavigne
4.Lost In YouThree Days Grace
5.When I’m Gone3 Doors Down
6.Hate MeBlue October
7.What Kind of MenFlorence and the Machine
9.She Will Be LovedMaroon 5
11.You’re Beautiful James Blunt
12.Thinking About YouPuddle of Mudd
13.Chasing CarsSnow Patrol
14.Love DrunkBoys Like Girls
15.HomeEdward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
16.This LoveMaroon 5
17.Everybody’s Changing Keane
18.Wherever You Will GoThe Calling
19.Trying Not To Love YouNickelback
20.Last To KnowThree Days Grace
21.The ScientistColdplay
22.That KissCourteeners
23.Use SomebodyKings of Leon
24.The Only ExceptionParamore
26.Jet Pack BluesFall Out Boy
27.My HeartParamore
28.Waiting For YouGrizfolk
29.She Loves Me NotPapa Roach
31.MapsYeah Yeah Yeahs
32.Hey There DelilahPlain White T’s
33.I Need You Saving Abel
34.Somebody Loves YouEels
35.No Matter WhatPapa Roach
36.SmileSixx: A.M.
37.I Miss YouBlink 182
38.ChancesFive For Fighting
39.Far AwayNickelback
40.First Day of My LifeBright Eyes
41.Sex On FireKings Of Leon
42.When You’re GoneAvril Lavigne

Rock ballads from the 80s and 90s:

The 80s and 90s were seminal decades in music history, and some of the best rock ballads were released during this period. Here is our playlist of the best love songs from this glamorous age of music.

You want to know more love songs from the 80s and 90s? Click on: 80s love songs und 90er Yeare Liebeslieder.

Each song is linked to its music video via the title.

1.Everybody HurtsR.E.M.
2.Love BitesDef Leppard
3.Edge of SeventeenStevie Nicks
4.Forever YoungAlphaville
5.I Want to Know What Love IsForeigner
6.Listen to Your HeartRoxette
7.With or Without YouU2
8.HeavenBryan Adams
9.Sweet Child O’ MineGuns N’ Roses
10.StayLisa Loeb
11.DisarmSmashing Pumpkins
13.Can’t Stop Loving YouVan Halen
14.It Must Have Been LoveRoxette
15.Right Here WaitingRichard Marx
16.Something to Believe inPoison
17.Tears in HeavenEric Clapton
18.HallelujahJeff Buckley
19.Father of MineEverclear
20.Every Breath You TakeThe Police
21.Stand up Kick Love into MotionDef Leppard
22.I’ll BeEdwin McCain
24.Take My Breath AwayBerlin
25.Here Without You3 Doors Down
26.Glory of LovePeter Cetera
27.November RainGuns N’ Roses
28.Keep on Loving YouREO Speedwagon
29.Black Hole SunSoundgarden
30.I’ll Stand By YouPretenders
31.The RoseBette Midler
32.Please Forgive MeBryan Adams
33.These DreamsHeart
34.Never Tear Us ApartINXS
35.Nothing Else MattersMetallica
36.I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking ForU2
37.Two Steps BehindDef Leppard
38.Promises in the DarkPat Benatar
39.You’re the InspirationChicago
40.Up Where We BelongJoe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes
41.Love SongThe Cure
42.The One That You LoveAir Supply
43.You’re All I NeedWhite Lion
44.All for LoveBryan Adams, Rod Stewart, and Sting
45.The FlameCheap Trick
46.Come As You AreNirvana
47.I Would Do Anything for LoveMeatloaf
48.Price of LoveBad English
49.I’ll Be There for YouBon Jovi
50.Love of a Lifetime Firehouse
51.AlwaysBon Jovi
52.Every Rose Has Its ThornPoison
53.Look AwayChicago
55.The Deeper the LoveWhitesnake
56.More Than WordsExtreme
57.IrisGoo Goo Dolls
58.Only the LonelyThe Motels
60.Can’t Fight This FeelingREO Speedwagon
61.More Than Words Can SayAlias

For a song to become a worldwide success, it probably needs good music and successful lyrics that people can still relate to decades later. Especially rock ballads get under your skin and must create excitement not only with a great voice but also with insightful lyrics!

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