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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

6 obscure car songs to liven up your next cruise | Hagerty Media

If you have fuel in your veins, chances are you've read articles about car songs. Heck, you've probably read one or two on this website! But generally they tend to be the same, old same-old that are overplayed at local car cruises.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/music/6-obscure-car-songs-to-liven-up-your-next-cruise/
237 REPLIES 237
sclin10
Detailer

"Long Lonesome Highway" by Michael Parks.
Tinkerah
Technician

Pretty sure Hot Rod Song isn't about a car at all but leaving just enough doubt.
cozmojav
New Driver

No one that I saw has mentioned "I'm in Love With My Car" by Queen, complete with engine revving at the end.
dcdci
New Driver

sclin10
Detailer

"Leader of the Pack" by the Shangri-Las. (I know it's about a motorcycle but could possibly be for a car also.)
DUB6
Technician

At least in my group, if you're a car nut, you dig motorcycles too.  So yeah, that's a good cruisin' song.  Probably would only be considered "obscure" by people under 40 though... 😃

sclin10
Detailer

Nobody mentioned this one?
"Paradise by the Dashboard Light" by Meatloaf!
Engineerbruce68
New Driver

You can always tell an article written by some young writer who has no sense of history.
Jan and Dean had many car songs that would make an intelligent reader crumple and toss this ridiculous list.
Songs like Dead Man’s Curve and Schlock Rod come to mind.
Punk music is best left to the punks.
Diego
Detailer

@Engineerbruce68, you're more than welcome to enjoy "Under the Boardwalk" ad nauseam at your local cruise, but the purpose of this article was to show some automotive songs under the radar, hence the title "6 Obscure Car Songs to Liven Up Your Next Cruise."

DUB6
Technician

I practically wore out the grooves on my J&D Dead Man's Curve album back then.  I would add the Hey Little Cobra album as one of my faves.  I don't play the vinyl anymore, but those two album covers (along with a few others) are pinned up on the wall of my shop.  Yeah, I get that they are definitely not "obscure", but when I'm working on my rods, those songs set the absolute correct tone!

Tweety66
New Driver

Cruisin' Down The Highway by - James Gang Album - Miami
fuelrivet1970
New Driver

Best car song you never heard of; Hot Rod Mercury by Don Walser. check it out at https://youtu.be/j1yJaqLrWzI
RSorenson1
Intermediate Driver

David Lindleys version on Mercury Blues is the best version of that tune. And it's a great driving tune too.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEs8zSkXqfc
RSorenson1
Intermediate Driver

A couple others...
Prince - Little Red Corvette
NRBQ- Ridin in My Car
RSorenson1
Intermediate Driver

Ry Cooder- Crazy Bout an Automobile
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zxGpmp6URuk
ramcodger
New Driver

Lightnin Hopkins My black Cadillac
JimO
New Driver

For some GOOD Car Songs - find these 2:

'Studabaker' - Written by the late, great Warren Zevon, covered by his son Jordan Zevon on a tribute release called 'Enjoy Every Sandwich'. Another goodie is written & performed by the guitar wiz Richard Thompson titles 'MGB-GT'. Musically, it is tongue in cheek renaissance-dance style, but does pay homage to 'bits of metal'.
You are welcome
02-orignal-ownr
Detailer

"Transfusion" by Nervous Norvis...You Tube: www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbhvZ2y1V80

"Crazy 'Bout a Mercury"--the original 1948 version, AKA "Mercury Boogie" or "Mercury Blues."
240ZV8
Pit Crew

A great song by the supergroup Queen. I'm in love with my car -1975
240ZV8
Pit Crew

Car_Nut
New Driver

Here’s a fun one from the Way Back Machine you will enjoy, ‘Honkety Hank”. This song is for the early, blossoming car nuts, like I was. Be sure to listen to the very end of the song for a surprise ending. There is a second song included, “My Mule Charlie”, which is the flip side of the 78 RPM record. Honkety Hank plays first.

You will recognize the voice of Pinto Colvig, as he did the voices of several famous cartoon characters. Namely, Walt Disney’s Goofy, Pluto and he was the original Bozo the Clown, both in voice and in person.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8kXEhCqxBI
Gw88champs
Pit Crew

Let’s not leave out “Eastbound and down” from Smokey and the bandit
Great song while driving a car or truck !!!
https://youtu.be/jAG4XXCOj48
DUB6
Technician

Agreed - although there is practically nothing by Jerry Reed that won't fit that statement 😁

That is one of his best, though...

bskeldum
New Driver

SS396 by Paul Revere and the Raiders
https://youtu.be/2DQHiWAgjW0
DUB6
Technician

From a guy who grew up around those guys in Boise during their heyday, thanks for the shoutout to the pride of Idaho as far as rock bands go!  🤗

SlowJoeCrow
Intermediate Driver

If you want obscure, how about From a Vauxhall Velox by Billy Bragg, or MGB GT by Richard Thompson, complementing his famous ballad 1952 Vincent Black Lightning.
Robin
Pit Crew

SJ
Advanced Driver

Route 66 from the Iconic TV Series.
HistoricAfton
Intermediate Driver

More obscure is the precursor to "Hot Rod Lincoln" written by Charlie Ryan: "The Hot Rod Race" by Jimmie Dolan. It was a rhyming, talking rock-a-billy song about a Ford and a Mercury racing up Grapevine Hill and as they were about to decide the race they were passed "by a kid in a hopped up Model A, just a hopped up Model A". Referenced by the line "when Fords and Lincolns were settin' the pace" in "Hot Rod Lincoln". Not a great song in itself, but certainly inspired a classic. You can find it on Youtube.com.

I talked to Bill Kirchen (guitar player for the Commander) and Redd Vollkert (both masters of the Telecaster) after a performance at the Mn State Fair two years ago. I told them I played both songs for my auto class students. Kirchen told me they didn't know "The Hot Rod Race" existed when The Commander recorded "Hot Rod Lincoln" in 1971. I had him sign my hot rod Hawaiian shirt and Redd Vollkert who owns a 1970's Corvette sign my Corvette shirt the next day. If you get a chance, go see these guys play before they retire. Redd was Merle Haggard's guitar player for years. Great shows. Their versions of "Hot Rod Lincoln" is on Youtube.com.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2_Kp_q786g
fotogmike
Intermediate Driver

Lots of great songs mentioned in the comments. I'll have to add a few to my "Car Tunes" playlist.

One of my favorites is Highway 101 by Social Distortion.
240ZV8
Pit Crew

If this was posted I missed it but
ZZ top Maniac Mechanic
RUTGER
New Driver

"I'm In Love With My Car" (Roger Taylor of Queen '75)
One day my parents were out and I wheeled my brand new Kawasaki enduro into the living room and straddled my bike while listening to Roger belt out this tune. Every time I hear this song it brings back a very strong memory of that day when I was 14....a time when I had no worries and only needed the feeling of freedom provided from loud rock 'n roll and motor vehicles. Funny how music helps you re-live awesome days of years gone by. 🙂
DUB6
Technician

RUTGER, I wholeheartedly second that opinion and observation.  Not only about that song and group, but about the entire ability of music to evoke nostalgia.  I never feel any younger (now in my 70s) than I do when the tunes are turned up.  Of course, I like to think that my generation had the best of the best, musically.  A huge range, from Classical to Metal.  I mean, the Big Band era was still going when I was a kid.  Swing and Jazz and those great orchestras, and then the very beginnings of Rock, along with Country and Western coming into its own with the great artists.  The British invasion, the many facets of Rock that have evolved.  Rockabilly.  Electro-music.  And yes, even a bit of the Disco stuff appealed to me.  By choosing my playlist carefully, I can take myself back to almost any era of my life and relive the good vibes that the tunes bring out.

Now, I never got into Punk, Grunge, Hip-Hop or Rap, and few things rile me as much as some unknown vehicle near me in traffic with the bass notes rattling my back teeth, but I suppose my parents were as down on Jimi Hendrix in my day as I am about some of the new stuff.  Live and let live!

But cruising around on a nice day, with the window down, and some songs from some bygone era caressing my ear-bones - depending on whatever my mood is that day - well that is some of the best psychotherapy around, in my opinion!

gerald102413
Detailer

Too many songs to name, but my top 3 I would never get tired of listening to is "Rock N Roll over you" by Moody Blues, John Williams Star Wars and the Empire Strikes Back symphony album and Guns N Roses Mr. Brownstone.

Bob330
New Driver

There's alot of songs out there from obscure to just older and nearly forgotten. I've always been partial to Queen's "I'm in love with my car". with a side of SRV's "Willy the wimp and his Cadillac coffin"
TCWilson2
New Driver

Not exactly what I would consider the pinnacle of musical achievement, but an entertaining and totally obscure track is "Beep Beep" by The Playmates (aka the Little Nash Rambler.) Released in 1958, it's the classic underdog story of a Nash Rambler out-dueling a Cadillac on the freeway. Simpler times. Sticks in my mind because after stints at Chrysler, Ford, and Fisher Body, Dad spent 32 years in body engineering at AMC.
Diego
Detailer

"Beep Beep" is not obscure at all. It's actually anathema to the list in the article. 

It reached #4 on the charts too.

DUB6
Technician

"Beep Beep" got quite a bit of air time on the local hot rod friendly radio station around my area in the early-to-mid '60s.  And some show 'n' shine DJs play it even nowadays.