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Top 10 Best Driving Songs

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A recent British study reported that drivers who are singing along to favorite music are likely to concentrate more on their driving and are less likely to fall asleep. This matches my own anecdotal experience, but it is great to have it confirmed scientifically. In the spirit of the study, here are my top 10 driving songs.

10. Eagles - Take It Easy (1972)

Eagles - Eagles
Courtesy Asylum Records

For many, "I’m running down the road tryin’ to loosen my load, I’ve got seven women on my mind," were the first words they ever heard from the Eagles. The song continues on exploring the joys of cruising around being admired by members of the opposite gender. It was an 8-track classic, now burn it to the nearest CD.

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9. Beach Boys - Little Deuce Coupe (1963)

Beach Boys - "Little Deuce Coupe"
Courtesy Capitol

Cars were a key element of a number of the Beach Boys' early classics. "Little Deuce Coupe" is possibly the best. If there was ever a love song written to a car, this is it. Just substitute what you've got for the words "little deuce coupe," and your auto will be purring in loving response.

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8. Beatles - Drive My Car (1966)

Beatles - Rubber Soul
Courtesy Capitol Records

"Drive My Car" kicks off the Beatles' Rubber Soul, one of the greatest pop albums of all time. It's easy to enjoy on a drive and sing along to the chorus, but when listened to closely, the lyrics are among the Beatles' most witty. "Beep beep, beep beep, yeah!"

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7. Billy Ocean - Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car (1988)

Billy Ocean - "Get Outta My Dreams Get Into My Car"
Courtesy Jive

It may be crass and commercial, but it's also great car music. Billy Ocean launched a song that has the perfect beat for slow top-down convertible cruising along the city strip. You'll be singing along in no time.

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6. Wall Of Voodoo - Mexican Radio (1982)

Wall of Voodoo - "Mexican Radio"
Courtesy I.R.S. Records

It's a bit of a left-field selection, but this classic is addictive from hearing it the first time. It's all about dialing in a Mexican station from dusty border territory. The next time you're headed along dusty highways from Texas to California, make sure this classic is on your playlist.

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5. John Mellencamp - Authority Song (1984)

John Mellencamp - Uh-Huh
Courtesy Riva Records

You might find yourself pounding the steering wheel along as the crack of the drums and guitar kick in. Irresistible melody, defiant singalong lyrics, and a big dose of attitude...in other words, great for driving!

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4. Derek and the Dominos - Layla (1972)

Derek and the Dominos - "Layla"
Courtesy Polydor

"Layla" by Eric Clapton's alter ego band, Derek and the Dominos, is one of the top rock classics of all time. The extended instrumental fade out is a warm antidote for a long, lonely drive. Duane Allman's slide guitar solo will expose and soothe any brand of emotional disturbance. Lock it in for any lengthy solo drive.

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3. The Cars - Let's Go (1979)

The Cars - "Let's Go"
Courtesy Elektra

"Let's Go," from the Cars second album Candy-O includes one of the most brilliant pauses in the history of pop music. Those few seconds between "She says" and "Let's go" make the entire song work. I must admit I still don't completely understand "She's so beautiful now, she doesn't wear her shoes." As one would expect from their name, the Cars made several great driving songs, but "Let's Go" is the best.

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2. Stealers Wheel - Stuck In the Middle With You (1973)

Stealers Wheel - Stealers Wheel
Courtesy Lemon Records

This parody of Bob Dylan's style by Scots Gerry Rafferty and Joe Egan locks into an outstanding rhythm for gentle 4-wheel cruising. The song was produced by classic pop songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. Who can help but join in with the instantly memorable chorus "Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am...stuck in the middle with you?"

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1. Golden Earring - Radar Love (1974)

Golden Earring - "Radar Love"
Courtesy Polydor

With that chugging beat and lyrics that begin "I've been driving all night, my hands wet on the wheel," "Radar Love" is the perfect song for cross-country night driving with no objective other than being with the one you love ASAP. Surprisingly, this universally well-known classic did not even make the pop top 10 upon its initial release.

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What are your top driving songs?

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