Following up our list at the start of the year featuring classic rock’s longest songs, we now bring you a selection of the shortest songs. Why? Because you can’t have one list without the other. Because you gotta show both sides of the spectrum. And because for songs that are 2 minutes or less, these little bad boys pack a serious punch.
It’s not an easy feat to say so much with so little, but would you expect any less from these legends? From The Beatles to The Who, Pink Floyd to Queen, these guys have all mastered the very short song (and by “song” we mean a vocal melody + chord progression, unless it’s a cappella). Here’s a list of 20 short but sweet classic rock songs. The wee little jams that may have initially served as interludes, transitional songs or hidden album tracks, but ended up classics in their own right.
20. Heart “Dreamboat Annie” (2:01)
The title track from the folk/hard rock band’s debut album was released as a single in 1976. The song was a lot softer than Heart’s previous singles (“Crazy on You” and “Magic Man”) and marked their first entry onto the U.S. Adult Contemporary chart.
19. The Box Tops “The Letter” (1:55)
Written by Wayne Carson Thompson (not a member of the group), the song became a #1 hit. Singer Alex Chilton, who eventually moved on to lead the band Big Star, was just 16 years old when recording the song. At under 2 minutes running time, “The Letter” is one of the shortest songs to ever top the charts.