I posted the AOL Radio list of top ten songs about cars the other day, and I only agreed with a few of them. Below are your top car songs, with a few I threw in to balance out the mix. Remember, these are car song, not driving songs, so don’t flame me for leaving out Radar Love, or Woke Up This Morning, or Valerie. Or whatever your favorite mash-the-pedal-to-the-floorboard anthem happens to be.
These are in no particular order, and my thanks go to the readers who offered up suggestions. You’ll notice this list doesn’t specify “Top 10”, so I’ll keep adding to from time to time. Got a suggestion? Let me hear it.
‘I Can’t Drive 55′ – Sammy Hagar
Amen, brother James – I can’t drive 55 either, but the good news is that we no longer have to. This early ‘80s video is a classic, and is a reminder of why cocaine is bad for you: it makes you think that big hair and buckle laden jumpsuits look good. Enjoy this classic time machine video, which had me laughing my ass off at the styles and stereotypes from 30 years ago.
‘Panama’ – Van Halen
Another video celebrating the wretched excess of the Reagan era. I think on a pound for pound of illegal substances consumed basis, Van Halen in their prime could have matched any band in the world. I remember when this video debuted on MTV, back when MTV actually played music videos.
‘Highway To Hell’ – AC/DC
I’m not really sure this song is a car song, but it’s a reader pick. Besides, you wouldn’t want to ride the Highway to Hell on a bicycle, would you?
‘Speed’ – Montgomery Gentry
I’ll come clean: the only music styles you won’t find in my collection are Country and Opera. Still, I won’t let my own personal preferences stand in the way of a reader’s pick. Big Russ says this is one of the best car songs, so here it is. And I’ll even admit it wasn’t that bad, for a country song.
‘Big Empty’ – Stone Temple Pilots
It took me a while to find the right video for this song, since the live STP videos generally suck. Scott Weiland doesn’t have the voice he had 20 years ago, and STP is pretty much phoning in their performances these days. This video borrows footage from Sin City, and I have to agree with the creator; the video works pretty well with the tune.
‘Paradise By The Dashboard Light’ – Meatloaf
Again, the song really isn’t about a car. It is, however, about the back seat of a car, and who among us hasn’t been there? Enjoy 8 minutes of sweaty Meatloaf and a smoking hot Karla DeVito, playing the role of back seat chew toy.
‘Red Barchetta’ – Rush
Rob N called this one, and I have to agree. It works as either a car song or a driving song, and there is no better piece of music to work a canyon road in a drop top with a manual gearbox.
‘Pedal To The Metal’ – Kazzer
Sketch called this one, and it’s hard not to love a song from the broke gearhead perspective. Yeah, he wants the Camaro with the blower, but a rebuilt Jetta will have to do for now. I understand that completely.
‘Hot Rod Lincoln’ – Commander Cody & His Lost Planet Airmen
It was surprisingly difficult to find a decent video for this song, so you’re stuck with hot rod images. Never a bad thing, if you ask me.
‘Trampled Under Foot’ – Led Zeppelin
Do yourself a favor and Google the lyrics, because the entire song is one amusing double entendre. The lyrics aren’t really about a car, but they could be; besides, can you name one other song that includes the word “Konis” in the lyrics? Didn’t think so.
‘Little GTO’ -Ronnie and the Daytonas
Scott suggested the Jan & Dean version, but I opted to go with the original. Jan and Dean, The Beach Boys and just about every other act that had a surf music hit in the sixties did a cover of this tune.
‘Black Sunshine’ – White Zombie
A Mustang, a manual typewriter, Iggy Pop and Rob Zombie’s in-your-face vocals for the win.
‘409’ – The Beach Boys
A tribute to the days when the Detroit big three built race cars and sold them to anyone with enough cash. The 409 in the song refers to an early 60’s Impala SS, which could be ordered with a 409 cubic inch V8. The motor was conservatively rated at 425 horsepower, but most actually made around 450 at the rear wheels. They didn’t turn or stop worth a damn, but they were stupid fast in a straight line.
‘Highway Star’ – Deep Purple
If you want soulful lyrics with deep meaning, look elsewhere. If you want Richie Blackmore in his prime on guitar, here’s your song. Consider this a love song to a car from a non-gerhead’s perspective.