Songs for the Open Road

As the odometer climbs the mixture of gas receipts, wind blown hair, and out of key sing-alongs meld into a memory making machine that is the Road Trip Soundtrack. Every trip has one. Its existence is casual born from a spontaneous shuffle of songs. Some of them stick while others are forgotten. The memorable songs become permanent push pins on the wall map of my mind marking locations that I hope to return some day.

I was relieved of driving responsibilities in Australia by gracious friends who allowed me a spectators view. I found myself humming these songs as I watched the desert landscape change right in front of my eyes. I've added them to the music player at the bottom of the blog for easy listening. You can also click on their name to see videos for the songs. Enjoy!

Michael Kiwanuka- I'm Getting Ready
This British singer has a voice like Richie Havens but a delivery that harkens back to the calm assurance of Nick Drake. I'm Getting Ready is one of many good songs on Michael Kiwanuka's first major release.

Of Monsters and Men- Little Talks
Accordion, crowd chanting and upbeat folk rhythms. What more do you need for a good summer band? Little Talks and the opener Dirty Paws are my favorite off the album My Head is an Animal.

The Shins- Simple Song
The Shins fourth studio album Port of Morrow didn't get the best "superfan" reviews but I thought it had a handfull of good songs. Fall of 82', 40 Mark Strasse and Simple Song all have catchy melodies layered underneath James Mercer's never aging voice.

Traveling Wilbury's- Poor House
The house I was staying had a motley collection of sci-fi paperbacks, DVD's and CD's. Among the gems was the Traveling Wilbury's Vol. 3. I had heard the "hits" from this super group when I was a kid but rediscovering it as an adult gave me a whole new perspective. You can't go too wrong when Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Roy Orbison and Tom Petty are in your band. My favorite tune Poor House has an upbeat rhythm that gets my toe tapping every time.

Tedeschi Trucks Band- Midnight in Harlem
The husband and wife team of Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi are the blues equivalent of the royal couple. Amazing in the own right they have surrounded themselves with a tour de force group of backup musicians that make soulful blues rock. My favorite tunes are Midnight in Harlem and Bound for Glory both of which highlight Tedeschi's voice and Truck's slide guitar.


  1. Got some good tunes goin there...

  2. Im a sucker for any music post...I will be checking that Of Monsters and Men out for sure...also like the Shins record...Ive been a Shins fan since their very first and this one isnt my fave but does have some good tunes...James Mercer needs his band back.

    Heres a couple in return that I love right now and think might be worth checking out...
    Cold Specks, I Predict a Graceful Expulsion ...great soulful mellow but powerful female vocal rooted in blues/folk with a contemporary twist.
    Langhorne Slim, The Way We Move...fun banjo shout out loud songs...and a few mellow ones too.

    thanks and enjoy!

    1. Good to hear from you Kyle.

      The Shins are a lot like Wilco in that they have changed line ups around one main musician. It sure makes for a variety of sounds and styles. I find I like each album for such different reasons that it is almost like I am liking different bands that just happen to go by the same name.

      Thanks for the suggestions. I can always count on you for good tunes.

      Have a good night.