I don’t know if Xmas Dolly realized this, but we were given two assignments for today: a freebie and songs about vehicles. No problem: here are twelve songs about vehicles, but I wasn’t too fanatical about it, giving the air of a freebie.
- Steppenwolf, “Magic Carpet Ride” You are probably flying without a vehicle here, but let’s just go with it…
- The Fifth Dimension, “Up, Up and Away” A little Catholic humor: I had a priest friend who told me that, one Ascension Thursday, this was the entrance song.
- The Ides of March, “Vehicle” The pride of Berwyn, Illinois, Jim Peterik and The Ides of March were big in the Chicago area, where they had two top 40 singles, but only really had the one, this song, nationally.
- Harry Chapin, “Taxi” The master of the story song with his first hit single. When I first heard it in ’72, I just knew I needed some Harry Chapin in my collection.
- Blue Öyster Cult, “Born To Be Wild” Already used Steppenwolf, so I thought I’d use one of the better covers of this tune.
- Steve Goodman, “City Of New Orleans” Arlo Guthrie had the hit with this, and it’s been covered multiple times, but the best is the original, by the late, great Steve Goodman.
- Kathy Mattea, “Eighteen Wheels and A Dozen Roses” I don’t listen to a lot of country, but this is a beautiful tune by the beautiful Ms. Mattea about a trucker who’s headed home to stay after thirty years on the road.
- James Cotton, “Rocket 88” Former Muddy Waters harmonicist James Cotton gives us this one about his souped-up Delta 88. They don’t make Delta 88’a, or any Oldsmobiles for that matter, any more.
- Little Walter, “Flying Saucer” From another former Muddy Waters sidekick, this is a rather cool instrumental piece. I can’t tell if Walter is switching back and forth from diatonic to chromatic harmonica in this or if it’s just the really cool effects they added to this one, but I think you’ll agree, it rocks pretty hard.
- The Hollies, “Bus Stop” Their first Top 10 single in the US, it peaked at #5. They do some remarkable harmonies, don’t they?
- Steve Miller Band, “Jet Airliner” I would have stopped at ten, then I thought of this, from Steve’s 1977 Book of Dreams LP. A staple of classic rock radio stations, I could count on hearing it at least once a day on the local one.
- Jerry Reed, “Eastbound and Down” From the 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit, sung and played (that’s his guitar solo in the middle) by Jerry Reed, who drove an eighteen-wheeler in the movie. Or at least it looked that way.
That’s Monday’s Music Moves Me for October 23, 2017.