Throwback Thursday – Driving Music

In an attempt to get back to blogging on a regular basis, I am designating Thursdays as Throwback Thursdays. That will assure I post once a week by posting old favorites from the almost 2000 posts that have appeared here. This one is from November of 2009 and, appropriately, its about music. Yes, it’s a dated playlist. But, hey, I’m 72 … I’m dated, too.

alfa1Speeding along a winding Connecticut back road in a 1965 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce with the top down in the autumn, red and gold leaves dancing in the draft. Cruising along Ocean Drive in Newport, RI in a bright red Fiat Spyder convertible as the surf crashes against the seawall, filling the air with salty mist. Driving across the great plains in a gray Volvo 144 toward a new home in California. Racing the eighteen wheelers across the desert in a green Toyota Camry on the way to visit our grandchildren. The vehicle may not be as exciting as we get older but one thing remains constant … I can’ t do the long drive without Driving Music. No, I’m not talking about the old guy poking along in the fast lane with Henry Mancini playing softly in the background.

I’m talking about the kind of music that makes you want to put the pedal to the metal and risk an encounter with the highway patrol … or those infernal photo enforcement cameras they installed in Phoenix. There’s a little outlaw in these tunes. Sure, there are lots of songs about cars, but Little Deuce Coupe doesn’t get my heart … or the speedometer … up to the speed limit, even. And there are songs for cruising, radio turned up and arm around the wife (how times have changed) as we motor down Main Street. In the Still of the Night comes to mind. But we’re talking about driving here, not cruising.

Unlike Slow Dancing songs, Driving Music crosses generations. Searching for lists on the internet, I found dozens of good ones covering every genre and era, but mine has a definite pre-eighties flavor. So, my list of the Ten Best Driving Songs will be even more age-challenged than my slow dance list. But here it is, in all its faded glory:

1. Radar Love by Golden Earring – The road, it’s got me hypnotized as I speed into a new sunrise. Number 1, no doubt.

2. Born to be Wild by Steppenwolf – You can’t have grown up in the Easy Rider era and not put this on your list.

3. Fun, Fun, Fun by the Beach Boys – From the opening riff (stolen from Chuck Berry) you know, Daddy’s going to take the T-bird away

4. LA Woman by the Doors – the California Highway Patrol must hate this one …


5. American Woman by The Guess Who – Can a Canadian anti-war song get you a speeding ticket? Yes!

6. Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac – And at your own speed …

7. Freebird by Lynyrd Skynyrd – Starts slow but by the time it’s over, you’re pulled over.

8. Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen – Chrome wheeled, fuel injected and steppin out over the line ...

9. Rebel Yell by Billy Idol – In the midnight hour she cried, “more, more, more” … speed?

10. Barracuda by Heart – Who cares what the lyrics mean when you’re doing 90?

I’d love to hear about your favorites. Drive carefull

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