1. Hold On, by Deep Purple
In the mid 1970's Deep Purple had gone through some major line-up changes; replacing bassist Roger Glover with Glenn Hughes and vocalist Ian Gillan with David Coverdale. From there the sound of the band incorporated more elements of funk, blues, and soul. These elements were most prevalent on their album Stormbringer. The track Hold On from this album features many falsetto harmonies from Hughes (as he was also the backing/secondary vocalist) and soulful bluesy melodies from Coverdale. Keyboardist Jon Lord takes most of the instrumental forefront in this song with some softer funk tinged keys, though guitarist Ritchie Blackmore rattles off the most memorable and melodic solo on the entire album; picking it with just his thumb. After this album, Blackmore would leave the band and form Rainbow because he felt that Deep Purple was making too much of what he considered "shoe shine music". Be that as it may, this song with its cheery funky atmosphere is a great way to lift your spirits.
2. Once Bitten Twice Shy, by Great White
Though the original version of this song is by former Mott the Hoople vocalist Ian Hunter, hard rock band Great White really brought the song Once Bitten, Twice Shy back to popularity with their 1989 cover of the song. It is a pretty straight up bluesy 50's rock n' roll style tune with the focal point really being the chugging away at the guitar. However, the honky-tonk piano really shines things up once it kicks in halfway through the first verse. The crown jewel of this little jaunt is the chorus. It's impossible to not find yourself singing "My, my, my.... Once bitten, twice shy baby!" along with the band. It's infectious in that way.
3. New Rose, by The Damned
If something a little more punk rock is your shindig, the tune New Rose, by The Damned is straight up your alley. This tune was actually the very first punk rock single in the United States. The pounding thunder of the drums during the intro met by the crashing chords instantaneously sets the mood for the rest of the 3 minute rock out to come. It is raw, it is energetic, rumbling, loud, and makes you want to get up and either mosh or do some kind of headbanging. The vocals don't have very much melody to them, but when it's punk rock does that kind of thing really matter?
4. Patience, by Guns N' Roses
Despite the fact that Guns N' Roses are known primarily for loud angry rocking tunes, they also have a softer and more tender side to them as well. This is extremely well reflected in the main single from their 1989 album GN'R Lies titled: Patience. No electric guitars, no bass guitars, or even drums. Just a few guys with acoustic guitars, a tambourine, and a singer. Vocalist Axl Rose pours his soul into every last lyric he sings and it really shows through; especially near the end of the song. For all of the outrageous and occasionally awful things he has been known to say and do he is an excellent and honest musician who gives nothing less than 110%. This is a great song to relax to, as this is an acoustic ballad.
5. The Seeker, by The Who
This song while played on a more clean amp setting is still a rocker as far as I'm concerned. The Seeker, by British Invasion legends The Who has this flow to it where you feel like you're being carried along. It's easy to nod your head along while also taking in the profound lyrics written by guitarist Pete Townshend and sung by Roger Daltrey. The amazing thing is while the song is pretty much just straight basic chords, it feels like it is so much more than that. Maybe it's the way everything is put together, but there is a good reason for the past 50 years Townshend has been the primary songwriter for The Who.