So what the hell is a riff anyway? There are numerous definitions out there, but most are along these lines: "a short rhythmic musical phrase which may be repeated often during a piece."
Through the decades as folk begat blues, blues got rhythm then spawned rock 'n' roll and its many bastard offspring, the guitar riff became king, sometimes even usurping the vocal melody as a song's main calling card.
Whole careers have been built on killer guitar riffs, so it's fitting that as another decade winds down we celebrate the most unforgettable air guitar anthems of all time. Yup, this week on MusicRadar it's Riff Week.
Interviews, features, video
Not only will we be counting down the top 50 guitar riffs of all time as voted for by you, but we'll also feature a dazzling array of A-listers from Slash to Brian May, Billy Gibbons, Rivers Cuomo, Jeff Beck and Joe Satriani.
These guitar stars know a thing or two about riffs, so we asked them to nominate their favourites and tell us what they think makes a great guitar riff.
We'll also be charting the evolution of the riff in the history of popular music and even offering non-guitarists the chance to get in on the act by giving away hundreds of pro-quality heavy metal guitar samples. For free.
The greatest riffs ever, as voted for by you!
We have a winner!
Joe Perry, Tony Iommi, Billy Gibbons, Jeff Beck and more!
Your favourites as you've never heard them before
Charting the riff from Howlin' Wolf to Jack White
Celebrate Riff Week with these crunchy free sounds
Plus riff-writing tips from the GN'R and Velvet Revolver star