Ray has been an online music writer for over four years. Having sung in multiple competitions as a youth, he has a passion for the art.
Drop D songs are the best options for both beginners and seasoned musicians. Iconic rock and metal songs often use it as an alternate tuning. There are numerous advantages to learning how to play in Drop D, from opening up simple ways to play power chords to make it easier to lower the pitch of a song. Here are the best songs in drop D tuning.
Artist: Foo Fighters
Album: The Color and the Shape
Year Released: 1997
Genre: Alternative Rock, Hard Rock, Post-Grunge, Rock
Facts About "Everlong"
- The song "Everlong" was released in August 1997 as the second single from the band's second studio album, The Color and the Shape (1997).
- Often, this song is interpreted as a reference to the drug addictions and bad habits of the late Kurt Cobain, who was a member of Nirvana and who wrote the song with Foo Fighters guitarist Dave Grohl.
- The 1998 MTV Video Music Awards nominated "Everlong" for Best Rock Video.
- After separating from his first wife, Jennifer Youngblood, Dave Grohl wrote the song about Veruca Salt frontwoman Louise Post.
- Among the best drop-d tuning songs, it conjures feelings of real love, shyness, and excitement, like your first time at anything.
2. "What I've Done"
Artist: Linkin Park
Album: Minutes to Midnight
Year Released: 2007
Genre: Alternative Rock, Hard Rock Music
Facts About "What I've Done"
- As the sixth track of their third studio album, Minutes to Midnight (2007), "What I've Done" is the first single from the American rock band Linkin Park.
- With this song, Chester Bennington sings about things we've done that we regret - and how we'd like to start over.
- Doomsday Clock is a term of naval warfare used in the album title Minutes To Midnight.
- It is one of the best rock songs in drop D, thanks to the production of Rick Rubin with Linkin Park's sound stripped down to create a more raw feel.
3. "Heart-Shaped Box"
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Album: In Utero
Year Released: 1993
Genre: Grunge Music
Facts About "Heart-Shaped Box"
- "Heart-Shaped Box" is one of the most popular songs in drop D, popularized by American rock band Nirvana.
- Kurt Cobain and his band Nirvana recorded the song as the lead single for their third and final studio album, In Utero, in August 1993, which appeared as the third track.
- "Heart-Shaped Box" describes how a new relationship can be a battle of wills as one struggles with feelings for another person.
- "Heart-Shaped Box" gained critical acclaim during radio airplay and reached the top of the Billboard Modern Rock charts.
4. "Harvest Moon"
Artist: Neil Young
Album: Harvest Moon
Year Released: 1992
Genre: Folk Rock, Country Rock Music
Facts About "Harvest Moon"
- Neil Young wrote "Harvest Moon" as the first single from his 1992 album Harvest Moon.
- Young has emphasized Moon's importance to him and its quasi-religious undertones in this drop D song.
- Despite Young's vocal range spanning from D3 to F#4, the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Sony/ATV Music Publishing indicates the song was composed in drop D Major.
- The Rolling Stone ranked "Harvest Moon" as the #37 best Neil Young song.
- With "Harvest Moon," Neil's superb vocals set the tone for a peaceful late summer evening.
5. "You Are My Sunshine"
Artist: Chris Stapleton
Album: You Are My Sunshine
Year Released: 2016
Genre: Country Music
Facts About "You Are My Sunshine"
- "You Are My Sunshine" got nominated for the Musical Event of the Year at the 2016 Country Music Association Awards.
- Morgane and Chris's rendition of the old-timey chestnut "You Are My Sunshine" recorded for producer Dave Cobb's Southern Family concept compilation offers a deep look at marriage, tying sentimental attachment with the fear of loss.
- "You Are My Sunshine," previously only available in concert, is a statement of commitment - to another person and one's passion, which can stoke itself in terrifying ways if not adequately tended.
- "You Are My Sunshine" is one of the easy drop D songs to play on guitar and piano.
6. "I Heard It Through The Grapevine"
Artist: Marvin Gaye
Album: I Heard It Through the Grapevine
Year Released: 1968
Facts About "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"
- "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" is one of the best and jazzy drop D songs written by Norman Whitfield and Barret Strong.
- It is a song about a man who discovers his wife cheating on him.
- While residing in Chicago, Barrett Strong was inspired to write the song by the phrase "I heard it on the grapevine."
- His first No. 1 song, "I Heard It Through the Grapevine," cemented Gaye's place in music history.
7. "Monkey Wrench"
Artist: Foo Fighters
Album: The Colour and the Shape
Year Released: 1997
Genre: Alternative Rock and Pop Punk
Facts About "Monkey Wrench"
- Musically, "Monkey Wrench" is a fast-paced rock song in the key of B major with a four-four time signature and an accompanying 174 beats per minute (BPM).
- Drop D tuning is used for the guitars in the performance of this song.
- The song was #3 on Kerrang's list of the 20 Greatest Foo Fighters Songs in 2020 and number seven on American songwriters' selection of the Top Ten Foo Fighters songs in 2021.
- The second stanza of the song's lyrics refers to the singer's seeming willingness to bend to the whim of his significant other, which is why he compares himself to a monkey wrench in the first place.
- Musicians say that "Monkey Wrench" is one of the fun songs to play in drop D.
8. "Your Body Is a Wonderland"
Artist: John Mayer
Album: Room for Squares
Year Released: 2002
Genre: Soft Rock and Bedroom Pop Music
Facts About "Your Body Is a Wonderland"
- The song "Your Body Is a Wonderland" was released as the second single from John Mayer's debut studio album on June 3, 2002.
- During his "VH1 Storytellers" performance, Mayer revealed that he wrote the song about his first girlfriend when he was 14 years old. Mayer later changed the song's title from "Strawberry Wonderland" to "Your Body Is a Wonderland."
- Mayer won a Grammy for Best Pop Vocal Performance for this song. He defeated legends such as James Taylor, Elton John, and Sting to win.
- Learning to play this award-winning drop D song is unquestionably a good idea.
9. "Moby Dick"
Artist: Led Zeppelin
Album: Led Zeppelin II
Year Released: 1969
Genre: Blues Rock and Hard Rock
Facts About "Moby Dick"
- "Moby Dick" is an instrumental rock drum solo by English rock band Led Zeppelin from their 1969 album Led Zeppelin II.
- "Moby Dick" is widely regarded as one of the most significant drop D drum solos.
- Led Zeppelin frequently borrowed from American blues recordings, and the guitar riff in this song is reminiscent of Bobby Parker's 1961 song "Watch Your Step."
- In the 1970s, John Bonham's marathon drop D song "Moby Dick" was one of the highlights of every Led Zeppelin show and inspired countless aspiring drummers.
10. "Killing in the Name"
Artist: Rage Against the Machine
Album: Rage Against the Machine
Year Released: 1992
Genre: Alternative Metal & Rap Metal
Facts About "Killing in the Name"
- Rage Against the Machine's protest song "Killing in the Name" was released as the lead single from the band's self-titled debut album in November 1992.
- The band's signature song is widely regarded for its distinctive guitar riffs and heavy use of profanity, "Killing in the Name" the band's signature song, is widely believed.
- "Killing in the Name" is one of the best and easy drop D songs to play on your guitar. This heavy metal drop D song came in at #24 on Rolling Stone's list of the Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time.
- "Killing in the Name" is one of the best metal songs in drop D to play on your instrument.
Year Released: 2001
Genre: Progressive Metal Music
Facts About "Schism"
- "Schism" is one of only two Tool songs to have ever reached the US Billboard Hot 100.
- The song was nominated for a Grammy in 2002 for Best Metal Performance by Tool. On December 20, 2005, the DVD single "Schism" was released.
- In other words, it's about the schisms within the congregation. People have tainted the church, which was once pure and innocent.
- "Schism" is well known for its distinctive bass line throughout and is a prime example of Tool's use of complex rhythms and changing meters. It is why it is one of the best songs in drop D.
12. "Never Going Back Again"
Artist: Fleetwood Mac
Year Released: 1977
Genre: Folk Rock, Country Rock, and Soft Rock
Facts About "Never Going Back Again"
- Lindsey Buckingham wrote the song "Never Going Back Again," which was first released by the British-American rock band Fleetwood Mac on their eleventh studio album.
- "Never Going Back Again" is a beautiful song with "bubbly SoCal philosophies about relationships," according to music historian George Case.
- "Never Going Back Again" took a long time to record.
- It is one of the more straightforward songs in drop D.
13. "Dear Prudence"
Artist: The Beatles
Album: The Beatles
Year Released: 1968
Genre: Rock Music
Facts About "Dear Prudence"
- For "Dear Prudence," John Lennon used a finger-picking technique he learned from Donovan, a singer-songwriter from Liverpool.
- "Dear Prudence" is one of the best guitar songs in drop D.
- "Dear Prudence" was the second White Album Beatles song covered by the Banshees.
14. "Lips of An Angel"
Album: Extreme Behavior
Year Released: 2006
Genre: Post-Grunge, Hard Rock, Rock Music
Facts About "Lips of An Angel"
- 'Lips of an Angel' is a song by Hinder, produced and co-written by Brian Howes and Joseph Lombardo, and released as their second single in July 2006.
- It tells the story of a man struggling to remain faithful to his current partner because he still harbors strong feelings for his ex-girlfriend, whom he sees as having lips like an angel.
- "Lips of an Angel" has sold more ringtones than any other rock song in the industry's history. Popularity peaked during the ringtone-buying frenzy of the early 2000s, making it one of the best rock songs in drop D to play on your instrument.
15. "Never Too Late"
Artist: Three Days Grace
Year Released: 2007
Genre: Post-Grunge Music
Facts About "Never Too Late"
- On June 29, the song topped the Canadian MuchMusic Countdown for one week, and it also topped the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.
- An anti-suicide song, this song tells the story of a friend who is willing to give up everything he has to save his suicidal friend.
- Adam Gontier, the band's lead singer, told a radio interviewer that this song is one of his favorites on the album.
40 More Drop D Songs
16. “Meant to Live”
Lamb of God
20. “Du Hast”
21. “Demon of the Fall”
22. “Midnight Rider”
Allman Brothers Band
23. “Coming Undone”
24. “Ten Years Gone”
25. “Pull Harder on the Strings of Your Martyr”
26. “If Eternity Should Fail”
28. “All Nightmare Long”
29. “With Arms Wide Open”
31. “Unnatural Selection”
33. “Last Resort”
34. “Don’t Eat The Yellow Snow”
35. “The Great American Nightmare”
36. “I Won’t Give Up”
39. “Bat Country”
40. “Sugar, We’re Goin Down”
Fall Out Boy
41. “Unholy Confessions”
All Time Low
43. “Mr. Tambourine Man”
45. “My Sacrifice”
46. “I Hate Everything About You”
Three Days Grace
47. “Black Hole Sun”
48. “Say Goodnight”
Bullet For My Valentine
49. “I Miss You”
53. “My Own Prison”
55. “All Apologies”
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2022 Ray