Friday, May 23, 2008

Weekend Listomania (Special Interstate Commerce Video Edition)

Well, it's Friday and you know what that means. Yes, my Oriental flunky Hop-Sing and I are off to the second weekend of our annual Writer's Retreat in Georgetown, Texas, hosted as always by the incomparable Allen Butler, author of such literary triumphs as A Review of Camel Signature Blends. Could be a hot one -- especially if a certain Swiss runway model shows up with her beard (that's an actual beard, by the way. Not a person.)

In any case, as a result, posting by moi will necessarily be somewhat fitful for a few days.

But until then, as always, here's a fun project for you all to contemplate:


Totally arbitrary rule: No title with the words "road" or "street" need apply. Sorry.

Okay, that said, here's my totally top of my head Top Ten.

10. Highway to Hell (AC/DC)

Did I say 'highway"?

9. Little Deuce Coupe (The Beach Boys)

Pretty much my all time favorite car song, and I love this clip, from a closed-circuit theater concert presumed lost until it resurfaced a few years ago.

8. Last of the Steam Powered Trains (The Kinks)

From the epochal "Village Green" album. Somebody -- in MOJO maybe -- was bitching recently that nobody had ever covered this. If they haven't, they certainly should....

7. My White Bicycle (Tomorrow)

Brilliant Summer of Love psychedelic pop, even if the guitarist is the pre-Yes Steve Howe.

5. A tie:

Silver Machine (Hawkwind)

Lemmy! Goddamn -- it's fricking Lemmy!!!!!


The Aeroplane Flies High (Smashing Pumpkins)

Just because I wanted something recorded within the last ten years. Although I think it's time we all faced facts -- these guys may well have been the most pompous, pretentious gasbags in rock history.

4. Chestnut Mare (The Byrds)

Because "A Horse With No Name" is just too stupid for words, and I couldn't find a video for Procol Harum's "A Christmas Camel." Heheh.

3. Another tie:

Theme from Route 66 (Nelson Riddle)

George Maharis and Martin Milner come home -- all is forgiven.


Route 66 (Dr. Feelgood)

I can't think of another rock song that's inspired so many terrific covers in so many styles -- Depeche Mode, anybody? -- but I had never seen this Dr. Feelgood clip untill now. That's the great Wilko Johnson on guitar and spastic stagger, of course.

2. Rocket in My Pocket (Jimmy Lloyd)

That's Jimmy Lloyd a/k/a Jimmy Logsdon ("The Man Without a Subtitle" in Nick Tosches brilliant Unsung Heroes of Rock n Roll, still the best and funniest book about roots music ever) and what was for many years one of the rarest and in-demand rockabilly obscurities ever recorded. You might recall it from The Iron Giant soundtrack, of course.

And the number one transportation song, it's not even a contest so don't bug me is --

1. Trains and Boats and Planes (Dionne Warwick)

For obvious reasons, of course, not the least of which it's just so gorgeously mournful. I think it's the peak of the Bachrach/Warwick collaboration, actually.

Awrighty then -- what would your choices be?

Shameless Blogwhore: My companion weekend movie Listomania is up over at Box Office. Remember -- if you can see your way to leaving a comment over there, I can convince management to up my freelance rate, thus helping me to afford that romantic week in Paris I've been invited to share with a certain shady dame.


dave™© said...

Well, there's Syd Barrett's "Bike" (via this great Flash cartoon)...

TJWood said...

Since I did not see any bus songs among your choices, I'll start my five choices for this week with one such song, and what better one than...

1. "Bus Stop" (The Hollies)

My other four, off the top of the head choices are:

2. "Drive My Car" (to get the Beatles in there)

3. "Silver Train" (ditto the Rolling Stones, although the Johnny Winter version is probably better)

4. "Rie's Wagon", from the first Gomez album, Bring It On

5. "Bus To Baton Rouge", to get another bus song--and Lucinda Williams--in there.

MBowen said...

One Way Donkey Ride - Sandy Denny

The Angels Took My Racehorse Away - Richard Thompson

Riot Van - Arctic Monkeys

No One's Watching My Limo Ride - The Loud Family (the best band of the 1990s)

Rowboat - Johnny Cash

Adventure Rocket Ship - Robyn Hitchcock & The Venus 3

Maglev - Rocket Number Nine Zoom Zoom Up

ME 262 - Blue Öyster Cult

Long White Cadillac - The Blasters

Runaway Train - Rosanne Cash

In The Aeroplane Over The Sea - Neutral Milk Hotel

Private Plane - Hüsker Dü

Don't Sleep On The Subway - Petula Clark

Black Cab - Jens Lekman

Camel Crossing - Kirsty MacColl

TMink said...

Car Wheels on a Gravel Road - Lucinda Williams

Magic Carpet Ride - Steppenwolf

Caravan - Duke Ellington and Van Morrison

Boxcar - Neil Young

Car on a Hill - Joni

Has nobody mentioned Cars by Gary Numan?

Fast Cars - The Buzzcocks

Planet Caravan - Black Sabbath

I Live for Cars and Girls - The Dictators

Yellow Submarine

Night Train - James Brown

Wooden Ships - Jefferson Airplane

and finally, Trains and Boats and Planes - FOW

Anonymous said...

White Wheeled Limousine - Bruce Hornsby

Gone Dead Train - Randy Newman (from the Performance soundtrack)

Leaving on a Jet Plane - Peter, Paul & Mary

steve simels said...

mbowen said...

No One's Watching My Limo Ride - The Loud Family (the best band of the 1990s)

I don't know if they were the best band of the 90s, but their first album is one of my top ten faves of ANY decade.

Noam Sane said...

Hmmmm....Jimmy Lloyd seems to have been yanked off YouTube. Here's NRBQ doing their version on Night Music back in the 80s. It features one of Al Anderson's patented "angry hive of bees" guitar solos.

Speaking of guitar solos (heh), check out Redd Volkaert & Bill Kirchen swapping smokin' hot licks on Truck Drivin' Man".

(Yes, a pre-Elvis tune by a couple of years, but it really ties the post together.)

Anonymous said...

Sitting in the Back of A Car

The Kenosha Kid said...

It takes a lot to laugh, it takes a train to cry - Bob Dylan

Mystery Train - Elvis (ignoring the rules)

Subway Train - NY Dolls

Cars Hiss by my window - The Doors

Dodge Veg-a-Matic - Jonathan Richman & the Modern Lovers

Magic Bus - The Who

Down in the Tube Station at Midnight - The Jam

Anonymous said...


"Little Red Corvette" (which I originally misinterpreted as "Give it rest, Collette."

"Back Seat of My Car"
"Cars" (Gary Numan?)
"Ol' 54"
"Pink Cadillac"
"Walk a Mile in My Shoes"
"Hot Rod Lincoln" (actually, I'm not sure if this is originally post-Elvis or not)

Anonymous said...

Hats off to mbowen for naming the first song that came to mind and additionally one of my all-time favorite songs
The Angels Took My Racehorse Away

My choices
1)Runaway Train - Soul Asylum
2)Train In Vain - The Clash
3)Train That Takes You Away - Syd Straw (one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard)
and just to move off the train theme
4)Ship Of Fools - Grateful Dead

David said...

Robyn Hitchcock was always into transport: "Trams of Old London" and "52 Stations" (on the Northern Line...)

Anonymous said...

The Train Kept A'Rollin ! Yardbirds or Aerosmith

Padre Mickey said...

XTC: Omnibus; Helicopter; Train Running Low On Soul Coal; Down In The Cockpit; Yacht Dance; Rocket From A Bottle.

Loud Music In Cars - Billy Bremmer

The True Wheel - Brian Eno

Always Crashing In The Same Car - David Bowie

Night Train - James Brown

Citizen Ship - Patti Smith

I'm In Love With My Car - Queen

ms. rosa said...

"bitchin' camaro" by the dead milkmen

double points: nikki & the corvettes' "backseat love".

steve you vindicated the fact that i 'you-tubed' wilko johnson for at least an hour yesterday. i thought it was just me.

Anonymous said...

Mustang Sally - Wilson Pickett

Makin' Thunderbirds - Bob Seger

Mercedes Benz - Janis Joplin

Under My Wheels - Alice Cooper


Unknown said...

REM "Driver 8"
Kraftwerk "Autobahn"
Richard Thompson "Vincent Black Lightning"
Aberdeen "Cities and Buses"
Speed the Plough, covering all bases "Blue Bicycle," "Big Bus," "Trains" and "Aeroplane"
Saloon "Bicycle Thieves"
Magnetic Fields "Born on a Train" and Fear of Trains"
Smittens "Moped Rally"
Lucksmiths "Motorscooter" and "Aviatrix"

Anonymous said...

Blasters - Long White Cadillac
Elvis - Long Black Limousine
Camper Van Beethoven - Joe Stalin's Cadillac

Wilson Pickett - Get Me Back On Time, Engine Number 9 (Mustang Sally was taken)
Modern Lovers - Roadrunner

Raspberries - Drivin' Around
Big Star - Back of a Car
Billy Bremner - The Boat That's Sunk A Thousand Ships (Loud Music in Cars was taken)

Randy Newman - Dixie Flyer

Richard and Linda Thompson - Jet Plane in a Rocking Chair
Dave Edmunds - You'll Never Get Me Up In One Of Those Things
Webb Wilder - Sputnik

TuneLovinJacket said...

Magic Carpet Ride - Steppenwolf
Car Wash - Rose Royce
My Caravan - Hoodoo gurus
Chicago Boxcar - Fab Poodles
The Train And The Plane - The jags
International Airplane - Model Rockets
Train Going Backwards - Dramarama
M-Train - Pylon
Building A Ship - Linus of Hollywood
Speedboat's Wake - Anne Richmond Boston
Rocket From A Bottle - XTC
Flying Saucer Attack - The Rezillos
Kiss Me On The Bus - The Replacements

Anonymous said...

Mystery Train: The Band

Bicycle Race: Queen

Rocket Man: Elton John (don't shoot me!)

Cadillac Ranch, Pink Cadillac, Gypsy Biker: Springsteen

Magic Bus: The Who

Brand New Cadillac: The Clash

Crystal Ship: The Doors

Leave the Biker, and Survival Car: FOW

Drive My Car, and Ticket to Ride: The Beatles

Night Train: Steve Winwood

Ship of Fools: Grateful Dead

Skateaway: Dire Straits

Anonymous said...

Luxury Liner - Intn'l Submarine Band (Gram Parsons)
Motorcycle Mama - Neil Young

Who Am Us Anyway? said...

The Kenosha Kid said: It takes a lot to laugh, it takes a train to cry - Bob Dylan

And of course that same 67 years old today song and dance man also noted From a Buick 6 that he was in need of a dump truck to unload his head.

danny1959 said...

"Fast Car" by Tracy Chapman.

shrimplate said...

"Proud Mary" and "Graveyard Train" by Creedence both come to mind, but I'm not sure if they're actually post-Elvis; he may have still been alive when these were current.

"Night Boat to Cairo" by Madness is one that I sort of like, and the excreble "Takin' it to The Streets" by the Doobies is one that rivals "Horse With No Name" for all-out suckitude.

Anonymous said...

Nonstop to Nowhere - Faster Pussycat

Slick Black Cadillac - Alice Cooper

I'm a Cadillac - Mott the Hoople

zombie rotten mcdonald said...

Truck Train Tractor by the Pastels for a triple play!!

Unknown said...

"Speeding Motorcycle" - Daniel Johnston
"City of New Orleans" - Arlo Guthrie
"Matapedia" - Kate & Anna McGarrigle