Pittsburgh's independent music source
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Readers Pick Songs To Drive By

All summer long, NPR Music has assembled weekly playlists for those taking road trips, gas prices be damned. After the Road Trip series highlighted songs to fit a wide variety of moods and situations — crushing sadness, getting lost and found, taking a journey in a mere nine minutes, embarking on a Heavy Metal Road Trip and much more — the All Songs Considered blog asked readers to offer up anecdotes about their own favorite road songs. As of this writing, more than 100 readers have provided suggestions; click here to read them and add your own. Below are five of the many enlightening and indispensable picks.

For the rest of this summer's weekly Road Trip: Songs to Drive By series, click here.

Copyright 2024 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Add It Up

The Violent Femmes' "Add It Up" can only be properly enjoyed while driving. Corollary: Driving can only be properly enjoyed while listening to "Add It Up." (Zebbart)

Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games

I live in a small college town on a mountain that has several steep back roads. My friends and I used to pile into someone's car and drive down these roads and through the farm country in the valley late at night, sometimes passing a joint around. The one album I remember consistently listening to on these outings is Of Montreal's The Sunlandic Twins, in particular the song "Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games." We'd all start singing along, in harmony, and life was grand. (Tim)

Rest of the Day

I think if I still had a car stereo, I would probably continue to listen to Bedhead -- all of Transaction de Novo, and especially the song "The Rest of the Day" from the album Beheaded. I once played that song while giving a relative stranger a ride, during which all conversation stopped, and after which she responded, "That was the best song I've ever heard." They were so good at gently commanding your attention and then blowing you away with a tactfully explosive "payoff." ... Bedhead songs often start out rather delicately, inevitably causing you to turn the volume way up, and eventually threatening to blow the speakers. Perfect for summery nighttime drives with non-conversational passengers. (Charlie)

This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race

Summer is the best time for making random road trips with friends. The last two or three summers, my friends and I have made it a point to get together and take a good long drive together. The greatest part about these trips is the soundtracks that we inevitably create while driving. They always seem to be indicative of the mood that everybody is in. On one of the coolest days of July '07, four of us hopped into my friend's car and took off into the country. The music jumped from Death Cab to Panic at the Disco, and finally, after about an hour of back roads, we switched to Fall Out Boy. When "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" came on, we stopped the car in the middle of the road, got out, and started dancing in the middle of the road. It was so much fun! After a few songs, we piled back in, sweat dripping and sore. We were all so jazzed. It was a great time. If you ever get a chance and find the right song, don't be afraid to stop and have a good dance on the side of the road. (Chet Atchison)

Highway Star

Warning: Do not listen while crossing the Mississippi River into southern Illinois on Interstate 57. Southern Illinois state troopers ain't joking. (John McAteer)