I regularly drive between Washington and Vancouver for my job, along with my buddy Dean Kirkland WA resident like myself and also like me, a massive music fan. Sometimes I need to go there and back in the same day and during those drives, I like to fill the 4 or so hours in the car, listening to music. Now, because I have done the journey so many times, I have started to put together quite a playlist in terms of which kind of music is the best for the trip. Whilst I do have a couple of playlists that I have put together, I much prefer listening to an album in its entirety. I love albums as work of art and I feel more people should listen to them rather than songs. And so, what I currently do is I will listen to a brand new album first, and then I’ll dig into my collection, and these are my favorite albums to listen to on the road.
Wolfmother – Wolfmother
When I first heard Aussie band Wolfmother I couldn’t help thinking that they were trying to basically rip off every 70s rock band that had ever been. On closer inspection however, this is simply not the case and this debut album from the trio is absolutely incredible. The album is the perfect driving record, stomping rock songs, killer guitar solos, sing-a-long chorusses and just a feel good album right the way through.
Nas – Illmatic
I’ve been a hip-hop head since I was young and whilst I love a great deal of new hip-hop, I just can’t get past this incredible debut album by Nas. From the first snare hit on N.Y. State of Mind, Nas takes you on a swift journey through his early life growing up in Queen’s and tells tales of what life was like back then. The smooth flow, storytelling technique and killer hooks is enough to make any journey better, and this album is always in my car.
Paul Simon – Graceland
My mum was a huge Simon and Garfunkel fan, and the a huge Paul Simon fan afterwards and Graceland is by far and away Simon’s finest musical offering. For me, there is no better album to listen to when the drive is slow, than this magical album which Paul Simon put together with a group of African artists such as Ladysmith Black Mambazo. From rocky numbers to African chants, trumpets and orchestras and Simon’s cleverly written lyrics, if you are looking at cheering yourself up on the journey home, look no further than Graceland, and absolver masterpiece.
Michael Jackson – Off the Wall
Of all of Michael Jackson’s albums, this is the one which I prefer to drive to because of the sheer amount of funk that is packed into this record. From Rock With You to Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough, this album will make you bounce around in the driver’s seat and make the journey feel infinitely quicker.