Special Sub-Topic: Road Trip Tunes
|What a great day to be on the road! Those guys on the Harley that just passed us are enjoying it. I can hear them singing above the roar of the exhaust:
"I like smoke and lightning, heavy metal thunder
Racing in the wind, and the feeling that I'm under."
What is the name of that song?|
Born To Be Wild. What else would we start the trip with but "Born To Be Wild"? Not only was it a big hit for Steppenwolf in 1968, it was also featured in "Easy Rider", a movie which, in its own way, defined American culture in the latter-half of the 1960s.
|You may be new to this 'road trip' thing but who was the original "Travelin' Man"?|
Ricky Nelson. Ricky Nelson grew up in front of America on "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" on the ABC television network. "Travelin' Man" reached number one on The Billboard Hot 100 in 1961. Stevie Wonder and Lynyrd Skynyrd had songs with that title and John Fogerty had "Travelin' Band" with Creedence Clearwater Revival but Ricky Nelson was first.
|I thought someone was following us but she turned off onto the "Freeway of Love." Who is she?|
Aretha Franklin. Aretha Franklin won a Grammy for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance with "Freeway of Love" in 1986. In 1987 she was the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
|Oh wow, man, look at that groovy VW Microbus! Who are those dudes who are "Rockin' Down The Highway" with us?|
Doobie Brothers. The Doobie Brothers rocked down the highway in 1972 with the "Toulouse Street" album. Among the songs on the album were "Jesus Is Just Alright" which was released as a single with "Rockin' Down The Highway" as the B-side.
|We need to stop and get some tucker, mate (How did we get to Australia?). But where? Let's ask that trucker over there. He looks like he's been everywhere. Who has been to:
"Oskaloosa, Tennessee, Hennessey, Chicopee, Spirit Lake
Grand Lake, Devil's Lake, Crater Lake, for pete's sake"?|
Hank Snow. Get a good lungful of air before you sing "I've Been Everywhere", there aren't many breaks in it. You may know the song by Johnny Cash but Hank Snow first recorded it as a song reworded for North America in 1962. But (and here's the Australian connection) it was written by Geoff Mack and first recorded by Lucky Starr, both Australians! "I've been to Tullamore, Seymour, Lismore, Mooloolaba, Nambourm Maroochydore..."
|Did you see the big old Gibson guitar in that convertible we just passed? It looks like something a slide player would use. The woman driving is singing. It sounds like...
"Spilling down the highway, leave a little drop of me
In each and every city, where I stop to drop you to your knees."
I wonder who she is?
Michelle Malone. Michelle Malone is one of the best slide-guitar players around today. This song, "Traveling and Unraveling" is from her "Sugarfoot" CD, released in 2006.
|One of those guys in that old Plymouth we just passed was yelling about driving past a grocery store. What was it that he was yelling?
"Roadrunner, roadrunner, going faster miles an hour
Gonna drive past the Stop 'n' Shop, with the radio on."
Who are those guys?|
The Modern Lovers. The Modern Lovers were a Boston band fronted by Jonathan Richmon. The original band line-up lasted just a few years in the early 1970s. Many consider them the archetypes of Punk Rock. This song, "Roadrunner", has been covered by the Sex Pistols, Joan Jett and the Greg Kihn Band, among others.
|Maybe we should stop for more food. That guy over there found a place to eat. Who sang:
"I was travelin' down the road, feelin' hungry and cold
I saw a sign sayin' food and drinks for everyone
So naturally I thought I would take me a look inside"?|
Leo Sayer. Leo Sayer found this hash house in 1974's "Long Tall Glasses". But as Leo found out, "before you can eat, you gotta dance like Fred Astaire."
|Hey, who's that over there in the old American hot rod? That thing is huge!
"Riding in the back, oozing down the street
Waving to the girls, peeling out of sight
Spendin' all my money on a Saturday night."|
Bruce Springsteen. "Pink Cadillac" is a classic American car song. Bruce Springsteen wrote it in 1981. It was the B-side of the single "Dancing in the Dark" in 1984 but wasn't included on one of his albums until "Tracks" in 1998.
|Uh oh, are we lost? Get out the GPS. That sign over there said "St. Louie, Joplin Missouri, Oklahoma City, Amarillo, Gallup New Mexico, Flagstaff Arizona." Where on earth is Winona? What route are we on?|
66. "(Get your kicks on) Route 66" - THE American road trip song. It's been recorded by everyone from Nat King Cole to the Rolling Stones to John Mayer. It was composed in 1946 by Bobby Troup, just as postwar Americans were hitting the road.
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