A Highway-Themed Playlist For Your Summer Road Trip
A well-crafted playlist goes a long way toward making a summer road trip more enjoyable.
And, as it turns out, quite a few songs have been written about driving on the highway.
With that in mind, here are some of our favorite songs about highway driving that should be folded into your summertime road trip playlist.
“Life Is A Highway”, Tom Cochrane. Released in 1991 on the Mad Mad World album, the song reached number six on the Billboard charts in the United States in 1992 after being a number one single in Canada. The song was also covered by Rascal Flatts for the Cars soundtrack.
“Route 66”, Nat King Cole. An ode to arguably America’s most famous highway, this classic pays homage to Route 66, at one time stretched from Chicago to Los Angeles. The song starts “If you ever plan to motor west/ Travel my way, take the highway that is best/ Get your kicks on Route 66.”
King rattles off a series of cities and destinations the highway passes through before ending the song with a question and a suggestion. “Won't you get hip to this timely tip? When you make that California trip/ Get your kicks on Route 66.”
“I’ve Been Everywhere”, Johnny Cash. This timeless classic begins with The Man In Black hitchhiking along a dusty road in Winnemucca, NV, before being picked up by a trucker. The driver asks Cash if he’s ever seen a road with so much dust and sand.
Cash’s reply? “I’ve been everywhere, man.” The song lists literally dozens of cities, both obscure and well-known, including “Gravelbourg”, “Haverstraw” and “Nashville.”
“Highway to Hell”, AC/DC. Written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young and Ronald Scott, this hard driving rock song celebrates a journey to the underworld. Released in July of 1979, “Highway to Hell” is on the last album featuring lead singer Bon Scott, who died early in February 1980.
“Roll on Down the Highway”, Bachman Turner Overdrive. A powerful guitar riff and memorable chorus define this Canadian group’s 1974 album “Not Fragile.” Songwriters Fred Turner and Robbie Bachman’s single with the chorus “Let it roll, down the highway” climbed to number 14 on the US Billboard Hot 100 on March 1, 1975.
“On the Road Again”, Willie Nelson. Almost synonymous with road travel, Nelson’s song celebrates sharing time with friends, making memories and experiencing all the open road has to offer.
The ballad’s chorus says it best, “On the road again/ Goin' places that I've never been/ Seein' things that I may never see again/ And I can't wait to get on the road again.”