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Famous Rock Songs That Feature Violins

When you hear the term “stringed instruments,” an orchestra in formal dress performing concertos at an opera house is probably what springs to mind. The violin’s classical history does evoke a sense of elegance and refinement, but for many decades now, violinists have been making a name for themselves on the rock stage as well.

The violin’s unique sound is instantly recognizable, and its versatility in the hands of a creative player renders it perfect for nearly any music genre -- including rock. Even the greatest rock legends have featured violins in their music. In fact, many famous songs contain just as many violin riffs as guitar licks!

Rock Bands That Have Showcased The Violin

True artists know the importance of blending multiple instruments in their music. The electric guitar is an iconic instrument that is truly rock’s hallmark. However, groundbreaking rock bands have always striven for instrumental diversity, and readily incorporated the powerful presence of violins along with their grittier cousins.

The Who, for example, is known for one of the most memorable violin solos ever recorded, on their hit “Baba O’Riley.” Likewise, the essential sound of U2’s “Sunday Bloody Sunday” was produced via an electric violin played by Steve Wickham.

Another Hall of Famer, Bob Dylan, creatively incorporated a violin in his protest song, “Hurricane,” to evoke a haunting effect. Even the great Led Zeppelin included violin solos in the timeless song “Kashmir.”

Then of course, there are the bands -- like Kansas -- for which the violin is not just an occasional coloring element, but a core part of their sound.

These are just a few of the rockers that have woven violins into their greatest hits in the past. Today, violinists continue to rock the stage, and their popularity has grown so much that they’ve created their own genre in the music industry. Rock violin is just what the name suggests: the combination of these venerable "classical" instruments use to amazing effect by today's hard-driving musical pioneers.

More To Come

Already more than 300 years old, the violin is an ever-evolving instrument, always able to foment innovation and fresh creativity. The ranks of new bands with violinists, representing not just rock but all genres, continues to grow. The world of modern music is full of guitar players; if you want to join or form a band, playing violin may just be what sets you apart from the herd!

Don't wait: pick out a violin online today at Johnson String Instrument. We offer a wide selection of quality violins that will suit whatever purpose you have in mind. Get your violin today and discover the wonderful world of music, from classical to Avant-garde!

violinist in shadow

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