The Top 10 best Classic Rock title tracks

17 May 2024, 08:00

The front cover artwork from David Bowie's Diamond Dogs album
The front cover artwork from David Bowie's Diamond Dogs album. Picture: Alamy
Radio X

By Radio X

As David Bowie's Diamond Dogs album turns 50, we take a look at some of the best Classic Rock title tracks of all time.

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Get our rundown of some of the most memorable title tracks of all time, from Bowie to Fleetwood Mac.

  1. Bruce Springsteen – Born In The USA: album released 4th June 1984

    Inspired by Born On The Fourth Of July, Ron Kovic's brutally honest book about a Vietnam veteran returning home to a hostile US, Born In The USA was originally intended to be the title song of a film that would feature Springsteen in the lead role. Ultimately, it came out as the title track of his seventh studio album, and a bitter critique of how the working class was being treated in modern America.

    Bruce Springsteen - Born in the U.S.A. (Official Video)

  2. Meat Loaf – Bat Out Of Hell: album released 21st October 1977

    Written by Jim Steinman and produced by Todd Rundgren, this was the title track to one of the biggest selling albums of all time and originally meant for Steinman's unfinished re-write of the Peter Pan story, titled Neverland. When released as a single in early 1979, the song peaked at Number 17, but did better in 1993, off the back of the belated follow-up Bat Out Of Hell: Back Into Hell; this time the epic song went to Number 8.

    Meat Loaf - Bat Out of Hell (PCM Stereo)

  3. The Clash – London Calling: album released 14th December 1979

    Joe Strummer and Mick Jones led off The Clash's generation-defining double album with this anxious summary of the state of the world at the turn of the 80s. On its initial release the title track made it to Number 11 in the charts.

    The Clash - London Calling (Official Video)

  4. Fleetwood Mac – Tusk: album released 12th October 1979

    The amazing title track to Fleetwood Mac's follow-up to the classic Rumours featured the University Of Southern California's Trojan Marching Band as back-up. The track made Number 6 in the UK charts, while its parent album made it all the way to the top for a week in November 1979.

    Fleetwood Mac - Tusk (Official Music Video)

  5. Iggy Pop – Lust For Life: album released 9th September 1977

    The second solo album from the former Stooges frontman was recorded - like its predecessor The Idiot - at Hansa Studios in Berlin with his friend David Bowie. Never released as a single in the UK, the track finally charted after it was memorably featured in the iconic opening scene of Trainspotting in 1996.

    Iggy Pop - Lust For Life

  6. The Doors – L.A. Woman: album released 19th April 1971

    The Los Angeles band's final album with original singer Jim Morrison saw the band get back to their bluesy roots... with the kinetic title track a tribute to the city that gave birth to The Doors' brand of hedonistic, psychedelic rock. Another title song that remained an album track, L.A. Woman's parent LP incredibly only peaked at Number 28 on its initial release in the UK - although it broke the Top 10 in the band's native USA.

    The Doors - Music Video - L.A. Woman 1971 | HQ

  7. Pink Floyd – Wish You Were Here: album released 12th September 1975

    One of Roger Waters and Dave Gilmour's most relatable, humane songs shows how battered and road-weary the Floyd were after the huge success of their previous album Dark Side Of The Moon. Despite not being released as a single at the time, the song has gained a reputation as a fan favourite over the years and made Number 14 in Radio X's Best Of British countdown chart in April 2024.

    Wish You Were Here

  8. Paul McCartney & Wings – Band On The Run: album released 30th November 1973

    Although he was first off the blocks with his debut McCartney in April 1970, it wasn't until his new group Wings released Band On The Run over three years later that Macca finally received the critical acclaiom his fellow Beatles had been enjoying. The epic title track peaked at Number 3 in the charts in July of 1974.

    Paul McCartney & Wings - Band On The Run (Official Music Video)

  9. Eagles – Hotel California: album released 8th December 1976

    One of the biggest-selling albums of all time, Hotel California's title track broke the UK Top 10 in May 1977, which in turn pushed the parent LP back up to its peak position of Number 2 - it was kept off the top spot by the hugely popular Arrival by ABBA.

    Eagles - Hotel California (Live 1977) (Official Video) [HD]

  10. David Bowie - Diamond Dogs: album released 24th May 1974

    "As they pulled you out of the oxygen tent, you asked for the latest party." Originally planned as a musical version of the book Nineteen Eighty-Four (until George Orwell's widow refused permission), Bowie's eighth album was a loose conceptual piece about the citizens of the apocalyptic "Hunger City". The title track made it to Number 21 in the UK charts when released as a single.

    Diamond Dogs (2016 Remaster)