Why is Stairway to Heaven The Forbidden Riff?

Why is Stairway to Heaven The Forbidden Riff?

Why is Stairway to Heaven The Forbidden Riff?

Stairway to Heaven is so frequently played in guitar shops that it has earned the moniker “Forbidden Riff” in part due to how simple it is to master. The Stairway to Heaven entrance was my first-ever learnt guitar riff, I’ll admit it.

The song’s heavenly opening notes have been semi-jokingly forbidden from being played as customers try guitars in guitar shops all across the world. Over the years, this practice has gained Stairway’s intro the notoriety of being known as “the Forbidden Riff.”

Almost Famous

Jimmy Page’s solo on “Stairway to Heaven” is one of guitar history’s most significant lead sections. Several decades after its release, it remains a favorite of musicians and music magazines. So it’s easy to see why the riff is so iconic, and it should not be avoided.

While Stairway to Heaven isn’t illegal, it breaches guitar etiquette. The song is so addictive that many guitar stores have signs prohibiting its playing. In addition, other popular guitar songs have been banned, including Smoke on the Water by Deep Purple.

Why is Stairway to Heaven The Forbidden Riff?

Because of copyright issues, the original riff from the song was changed for international, cable, and video releases. However, the original US theatrical release still contains a good riff. Although this is still considered a forbidden riff, it is an excellent example of a classic guitar riff.

The Stairway to Heaven riff was banned in some guitar stores in 1992, but no official evidence supports this claim. Instead, the riff’s famous opening riff has become a famous musical passage and is the first piece of music most people learn on guitar. In addition, the riff is not challenging to play and doesn’t require complicated guitar playing skills.

While many people associate the stairway to heaven riff with drug use, this is not the only reason it was banned from guitar stores. In 2019, this riff was heard in a song made famous by the band Despacito. The song has become an enduring favorite of fans around the world.

This forbidden riff is so famous and overplayed because it is not as challenging to learn as many guitarists think. However, the riff has become so popular that it has become an inside joke among the guitar community.

Led Zeppelin

Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin is a fantastic song with some of the most incredible guitar riffs. It is so good that the song has been called the most played song in rock history. It is layered with instrumentals to create a relaxing atmosphere and gradually builds tempo and intensity, with pauses for power chords. This makes it one of the most challenging guitar solos ever and one of the most imitated.

Although the song has inspired many rock fans over the years, there has been some controversy. In the 1970s, a band called Spirit sued Page and Plant for copyright infringement of the song. In the lawsuit, Randy Wolfe’s trustee claimed that Page and Plant had copied the intro to their song Taurus, initially written by Randy Wolfe for the band. Although it is difficult to say whether the two songs were copied directly, there are many similarities.

Stairway to Heaven may have been considered forbidden by some Christian organizations because it features a “backmasking” riff that is supposedly hidden in the song and can only be found by playing it backward. Backmasking claims were often made by conservative religious groups who claimed that rock bands were hiding a satanic message. However, most backmasking claims involved the listener attempting to decipher the message.

While playing Stairway to Heaven is not illegal, it is considered an infraction of guitar store etiquette. If you play this riff in a store, chances are you’ll receive a lot of jokes and jeers, and you’ll likely get kicked out of the store.

Progressive rock

The Stairway to Heaven riff from the progressive rock band Yes is one of the most famous riffs in rock history. It is eight minutes long and has been banned from many music stores. While the song is well-known and loved by many, its lyrics are controversial. Some say the lyrics are a drug metaphor, while others believe it is a sexy reference to a woman willing to give everything for you. Whatever the interpretation, this riff has become a cult classic.

As a riff, it is not the most challenging, but it is one of the most well-known and widely played. Its intro comprises arpeggiated chords and is an excellent introduction for new players to the progressive rock genre.

Why is Stairway to Heaven The Forbidden Riff?

The lyrics and music of “Stairway to Heaven” are complex and thought-provoking. The song is a mix of progressive rock and classic hard rock. While the first part is esoteric, the second and third parts are fast-paced and dominated by electric instruments. Many consider a solo electric guitar part in the third part the heart of the song.

Stairway to Heaven is an iconic song from the 1970s that became incredibly popular. It features an epic vocal performance and an unforgettable solo from Jimmy Page. The song has even become a meme, with fans joking that the riff is a “forbidden” riff.

Although the riff is not illegal, it is not recommended to be played in guitar stores. Not only is it offensive, but it is also against etiquette. In addition, many guitar store staff members are annoyed with people who play this riff.

Folk music

The “Stairway to Heaven” riff is a standard favorite for a beginner learning to play guitar. It’s often played with a standard fingerpicking technique, and beginners often like to practice the arpeggiated chords at the beginning of the song.

It’s a riff introduced into folk music in the early 1970s by the band Stairway to Heaven. The song’s lyrics were written to send the listener on an emotional journey through Heaven. But some Christian extremists have deemed the riff sacrilegious, arguing that it was written by the Devil and used to spread his evil Spirit to the masses. This interpretation was made famous by Christian radio host Michael Mills, whose show aired the song.

Despite being banned in some guitar shops, ‘Stairway to Heaven was a hit. It was such a hit that the band’s lead singer Robert Plant got sick of hearing it. It took three weeks for a complete beginner to learn the song.

The song is so famous that many new guitarists buy guitars so that they can play it. One music store even offered a 15% discount if a customer could play the song. As a result, those salespeople were bombarded with guitar buyers eager to practice the song.

The song’s lyrics have evoked many different interpretations. Even Robert Plant has interpreted the lyrics differently, depending on the listener’s mood. The lyrics follow the story of a woman saving money to buy a stairway to Heaven. He once explained that the woman gets everything she wants without giving anything back.

The “Stairway to Heaven” riff has been controversial throughout its history. Some parents and music snobs were concerned that it contained satanic messages. This led to a consumer protection committee hearing testimony from so-called “experts” who claimed that playing the song backward would convey a satanic message. However, Led Zeppelin has denied these claims.


The main riff from Stairway to Heaven is often referred to as the forbidden riff. While the song is not banned, its overplay in music stores is a common source of mockery. The riff is famous because of the multiple stories it tells.

The riff was famously included in the movie Almost Famous, starring Cameron Crowe as a teenage journalist working at Rolling Stone during the early 1970s. The extended version of the movie had a scene where the character played Stairway to Heaven to his mother.

The song’s lyrics may be about greed, duality, and the inevitability of death, but Plant delivers the lyrics in a way that captures the listener’s attention. The song also contains references to the occult. Despite being overplayed, the song remains a timeless masterpiece.

The song has become one of the most overplayed songs in the world, but it’s a classic. If you are not afraid to play Stairway to Heaven, you should learn to play it. It’s easy to learn, and even a beginner can do it with a little effort.