Predicting the future of music is often a perilous exercise. Rock stars of the mid-1900s probably wouldn’t have foreseen some of the pop- and punk rock we’ve seen more of in the last 20 years. No one in the ‘80s could have imagined that hip-hop would be what it is today. And stretching things out a little bit more, it’s fair to say that classical musicians of centuries past couldn’t even conceive of electronic music as we know it today.

That’s all just to say that any discussion about the future of music involves some speculation and uncertainty. With that said, however, there are lots of songs that we would label “timeless,” and which it’s easy to imagine people continuing to listen to — and play — 10, 20, or 100 years from now. The following, in particular, are five we expect people will be learning and practicing with for a very, very long time to come….

1. Imagine – John Lennon

Imagine is a song we’ve featured before, and it’s one that — perhaps above all other songs played on guitar — might truly be timeless. It’s a song of hope and community that is made all the more powerful over time by the general tragedy of John Lennon. And it’s one that seems to return from the past at will from time to time, whether by a New York City broadcast on New Year’s Eve, or a street performer on a Tuesday evening. Beyond being timeless in its own right though, it’s also a lovely song for beginner guitarists to learn with. It takes skill to play the song perfectly and to master the subtlety of it. But in terms of the chords themselves, it’s relatively easy for such a monumental tune.