Definitions for riffrɪf

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word riff

Random House Webster's College Dictionary


  1. an ostinato melodic phrase accompanying a soloist in jazz or rock music.

    Category: Music and Dance

  2. any variation or improvisation, as on an idea.

    Category: Informal

  3. (v.i.)to perform a riff.

    Category: Music and Dance

Origin of riff:

1930–35; perh. alter. of refrain2

Princeton's WordNet

  1. Riff, Riffian(noun)

    a Berber living in northern Morocco

  2. riff(verb)

    a jazz ostinato; usually provides a background for a solo improvisation

  3. flick, flip, thumb, riffle, leaf, riff(verb)

    look through a book or other written material

    "He thumbed through the report"; "She leafed through the volume"

  4. riff(verb)

    play riffs


  1. riff(Noun)

    A repeated instrumental melody line in a song.

  2. riff(Noun)

    A clever or witty remark.

  3. riff(Verb)

    To improvise in the performance or practice of an art, especially by expanding on or making novel use of traditional themes.

The Nuttall Encyclopedia

  1. Riff

    the name given to the N. coast-lands of Morocco from Tangiers to Algeria; is a mountainous and woody region, with a rugged foreshore, inhabited by lawless Berbers.


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