101 Songs for the Open Road
I recently returned from a trip to California with my youngest (teenage) daughter. We had a great time renting a convertible in Los Angeles, driving around the city of Angels for a few days and then trekking up Highway 1 to San Francisco. It was six days of feeling like a 20-something again.
A key element to our trip was the music. We needed driving music that complemented the incredible beauty of the Pacific Coast Highway along with the feel of a 2015 Chevy Camaro convertible hitting the open road. We listened to everyone from Springsteen and the Stones to Pavarotti and Gospel music. The week was both inspiring and life-affirming.
Anyone who has taken a road trip can hopefully appreciate my words. A 5+ hour journey, either alone or with friends, isn’t the same without music to set the tone for your adventure. It could be classic rock or country; rap or rhythm and blues. Every successful trip I’ve ever taken had a great playlist!
One of my favorite remedies for writer’s block or getting out of a funk is to go for a drive while listening to music. After another tough winter, I decided to take advantage of a recent 65-degree day and go for a ride in our Mini Cooper convertible. It was a Saturday and I was feeling the blahs after a tough work week. I put the top down and drove 10 minutes to get some coffee. By the time I had my first sip, Marshall Tucker was asking me “Can’t You See?” on the radio and I completely changed my outlook.
Music and a good drive can be the best medicine for whatever ails you. Within minutes, you start to unwind. A song can easily transport you to a distant place or even back in time. By the time you return, everything seems much clearer. You feel renewed, reinvigorated and your battery is charged. It almost begs the question “Why don’t we do this more often?”
Below are some of my favorite photos from our recent trip along with 101 songs I played again and again over the 6-day period. I hope they inspire you to plan something similar for next weekend. If you do take my advice, let me know how it went. I’m always looking for my next road trip.