Top 10 Ritchie Blackmore Songs that Were Important in Metal History

Ritchie Blackmore, aka The Man In Black, is one of the finest rock/metal guitarists, riff and solo master, and founder of 2 legendary bands: Deep Purple and Rainbow.
His role in creation of metal music is still criminally underrated - he was much more influential than most people would ever imagine.

From time to time he gets some recognition - in 2004 he was ranked number 16 on Guitar World's "100 Greatest Metal Guitarists of All Time".

This isn't a list about the best songs, it's about the most important. Many of you probably noticed that not always the most important songs/albums are the best.

The Top Ten

1 Hard Lovin' Man - Deep Purple  Hard Lovin' Man - Deep Purple 

And with this being made... A legendary genre of music was created - christangrant

1970. A pretty obscure Deep Purple song but basically it was the first proto-metal song, a template for all future fast metal songs and subgenres (except doom and some other slow metal subgenres that were inspired by Black Sabbath).
Highway Star is much better but Hard Lovin' Man came out first so I believe it was more important. - Metal_Treasure

2 Highway Star - Deep Purple Highway Star - Deep Purple

1972. This song contains the first true metal guitar solo. I never get tired of this song, it's probably my favorite Deep Purple song. - Metal_Treasure

3 Stargazer - Rainbow Stargazer - Rainbow

1976. Epic, beautiful, perfect. - Metal_Treasure

4 A Light in the Black - Rainbow

This was the first Melodic Metal song ever. The speed, double bass, vocal melody and solos harmonies turned to higher level. The blues was left behind and a more technical aproach came over. There is nothing like this song done before.

1976. This is the most technical and most developed metal song of the 70s in my opinion. Sometimes I think it's the best Ritchie Blackmore guitar solo ever. Awesome interplay between the guitars and keyboards. Impecable vocals by Dio and drums by Cozy Powell. - Metal_Treasure

5 Burn - Deep Purple

1974. A very underrated early metal song. - Metal_Treasure

6 Eyes of the World - Rainbow 

1979. Proto-symphonic metal on an album recorded after Dio departure. So it's not true that Rainbow stopped making metal music after Dio. This song was just ahead of its time and I guess people back then didn't even know it was proto-symphonic metal because symphonic metal became popular 20 years later.
Ritchie Blackmore is a genius, always ahead of his time, which is one of the reasons he remained misunderstood and underrated. The other reason is ignorance, often found even in the Wiki articles about metal music. I don't even wanna talk about the metal editions of watchmojo and similar. - Metal_Treasure

7 Child in Time - Deep Purple

1970. This song isn't 100% metal but was very influential towards metal - its epic lenght (10 min), its progressive structure, vocals with legendary screams, solo, etc.
Also, this was the song that made the young Bruce Dickinson get interested in heavier/harder music - he heard "Child in Time" being played in another student's room and "In Rock" was the first album he ever bought. - Metal_Treasure

8 Fire Dance - Rainbow

Pure power metal from 1983. So Heloween's Walls of Jericho (1985) didn't contain the first power metal songs as many believe. Also, on this song Rainbow used a drum beat that later became one of the most typical beats in the power metal songs.
Drums - Chuck Burgi
Vocals - Joe Lynn Turner - Metal_Treasure

9 Kill the King - Rainbow 

1978. One of the fastest and most aggressive metal songs of the 70s. A very good and really fast solo. Also, this song has over 10 cover versions so I guess it is very important. - Metal_Treasure

10 Gates of Babylon - Rainbow

1978. Dio fantasy lyrics became typical in power metal lyrics of the next generations. One of my favorite Rainbow songs - the way it's composed, especially the arabic scales Ritchie used here, intro/outro, etc. - Metal_Treasure

Started power metal

The Contenders

11 Difficult to Cure - Rainbow

1981. The song sample is a live version and what I hear is an improvisation. Find the original.
Difficult to Cure is an instrumental I like very much - a metal cover of Beethoven's Ode To Joy.
It was one of the first neoclassical metal songs. Ritchie Blackmore was Yngwie's biggest influence. - Metal_Treasure

12 Fireball - Deep Purple

The riff is quite fast. I believe more or less it was important. - zxm

13 Death Alley Driver - Rainbow

1982. A great speed metal song with one of the best and fastest Ritchie Blackmore solos that, unfortunately, nobody knows. Nobody, except metal musicians. Metal musicians listened to Rainbow and Deep Purple, and still do, judging by some influences I often identify in current metal. For example, the early Dream Theater started in the 80s as a band that played Rainbow covers. Many of you probably have no idea how much Rainbow influence there is in Dream Theater music, even to this day. - Metal_Treasure

14 Eyes of Fire - Rainbow

1982. A song with pretty epic feel. - Metal_Treasure

15 Speed King - Deep Purple
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List StatsUpdated 5 Jul 2019

15 listings
2 years, 234 days old

Top Remixes

1. Hard Lovin' Man - Deep Purple 
2. Highway Star - Deep Purple
3. Burn - Deep Purple


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