Road Trip Music
(10 by 52 is a 52-week experiment of a blog. The goal is to create a 10-track playlist for the specific topic. These will obviously be highly subjective to my personal taste and or memory. I look forward to hearing your suggestions and your playlists.)
Week 2 of 10 by 52 is here. I have 52 weeks, plus of things planned. Some of them seem fun. Several of them seem harder than they look like at second glance. Also, I plan on being more consistent with a posting day, but with a regular day job we’ll see. So, let’s see what happens with it. So far, one down and working on number 2, I’m having fun. Continue to read along, and if you’re joining now, go back to week one and check it out. Anyway, on to the music. We’re a few weeks away from school starting here, so that means vacations are coming to an end. It also means that road trips are still on the table. This week is my current 10 road trip songs. No particular order, as will generally be the case and a little skewed since I have kids in the car. And everyone knows the key to a good drive is keeping the kids happy. These are good songs for everyone though.
10. Take It Easy — Eagles
Sometimes the classics just hit the spot. My dad was a fan of the Eagles, so naturally when anything by them comes on a wave of nostalgia hits. Being on the road, some of the best songs are the ones that you can sing along to. I get a little kick about singing songs that about driving, while I’m driving. The rhythm is just upbeat enough that I’m not falling asleep, but not quite to rocky to drive the kids crazy (at least when they’re paying attention to what’s actually on the speakers).
9. Wherever I May Roam — Metallica
I know you can already hear that intro. Just close your eyes and listen. That easy guitar solo into the drums and then just head banging glory. My kids love Metallica. When this song comes on, they all start moving their heads. The boy gets his best metal face going and everyone in the car is happy. Anytime a song like this comes on, the energy just pours out. It’s perfect for getting the doldrums of driving out and good vibes going. It’s also great for starting the trip, or when you’re getting to your destination, or really anytime. Just put it on now and come back after you listen to it again.
8. See You Later, Alligator — Bill Haley & His Comets
LIke I mentioned before, when you’re driving with kids, you have to keep them a little happy. One way is to pick songs that only appeal to them. Another way is to pick kid songs that you can tolerate. The best way, in my opinion, is to introduce them to songs you love and hope they feel the same way. This is a classic oldy. A song that has a decent message and an easily repeated chorus. We get through this song with everyone smiling and singing along. It’s not my favorite on this list, and would be quickly cut off if there were no kids, but it’s still a fun song, nonetheless.
7. Shake — The Head and the Heart
A steady beat, easy chorus, a little ooooohhh-ing is a good combination for driving. I can sing along, we can all enjoy the beat and it’s just upbeat, in the tempo if not the words. I just really enjoy this song. It has a feeling of something older, a hint of “Happy Jack” by The Who, which is one of my favorite listens. It’s one of the draws to the song and a nice segway when both songs are in the playlist.
6. Wonderlust King — Gogol Bordello
To wander, get lost, be found, it’s a human need. We journey, explore, and seek out the unknown. Sometimes it’s simply to get away from the people around us. Sometimes it’s for spiritual reasons, but wandering is in our souls. A gypsy punk band seems like the perfect group to sing about that feeling and to exude that energy in their music. They don’t disappoint. Everything they do is amazing and fun (that’s the subjective stuff there). This is one of my all time favorites and I could be about to fall asleep (never a great idea while driving) and this song will not only wake me up, but pump me full of energy.
5. The Race Is On — Sawyer Brown
It’s country, is fast pace, and another easy chorus. I don’t know about you, but a song that comes up talking about racing makes me wants to push the gas pedal to the floor. It’s not the most energetic song, but it comes in at just the right beat and pace. Again, beat is half of it, but for me, I love the ones I can sing along to. It keeps my mind going and my whole body engaged.
4. HandClap — Fitz and The Tantrums
Another kid pleaser. Don’t get me wrong, this is upbeat, loud and energetic, but it’s all about the kids here. The pop sound keeps the kiddos engaged and they love clapping their hands along with it. Singing, clapping, and energy, can you really ask for much more? It doesn’t always hit the right mood, but when everyone gets into the infectious nature of the song, you just can’t fight it.
3. Feels Like Summer — Weezer
It does feel like summer, mostly because it is summer, but that’s beside the point. This is weezer. There isn’t much surprising from them anymore, though this sound is slightly different, but you get what you expect from them; a fun song. The choppy lyrics bump with the beat as it flows along and brings the energy that they always do. The slight electronic pulse they give this song adds a small tweak to the aesthetic that really works and has really been a fun little “summer” song since it was released in mid-winter.
2. Flathead — The Fratellis
The Fratellis are on their fourth album, but the energy from the first album has been unmatched, in my humble opinion. Everything, from the first song to the last, is just high energy and perfect for getting me moving. This song is one of the best on the album. We jump back and forth from singing to a hair below yelling through the singing. This breakup of the song in different tones and textures gives my brain a great wake up call. I can always count on this gem to get me going, whether it’s in the car, on a run, or just on a slow day. Kids or no kids, this one is perfect for a long drive.
1. Beep Beep — The Playmates
First and foremost, if you haven’t listened to this song, you are in for a treat. I LOVE this song. My grandma is currently 80 years young. She has been out of high school for many a year at this point, but when I was younger they had a class reunion. They made cassettes (please tell me you know what these are) of hit songs from their high school years. This song was on there. I had never heard the song previously and I couldn’t get enough of it. It made me laugh, I sped along with the cadillac, and it was a great time. I still get the same little thrill when I listen to it. My kids are finally getting to the age when they are understanding the lyrics a bit. The older one especially loves it. The youngest just loves screaming, Beep Beep. I can’t imagine this not being on when I drive.
Well, that’s it for this week. I hope you like the songs. Share your essentials below and I look forward to checking them out. Happy listening and safe driving.