Road Trips Need Tunes: Here’s Our Ultimate Playlist

Thelma & Louise sang on their road trip. Do you?

Sweet Sixteen and Ready to Rock ‘n Roll: Must Have Tunes!

I could not wait to get my drivers’ license when I was 16. I had completed Drivers’ Ed: driving around and between orange cones in the parking lot at my high school and proving that I could parallel park, and I was ready. Once I had that little card in hand, I was free, and my first car, an orange-ish 1977 Dodge Aspen, and I were one with the road.

Back then, cars had cassette players, and some could still accommodate an 8-track, along with the radio. As soon as I could get to Supersounds Music in my hometown mall, I procured the debut Guns N’ Roses album, Appetite for Destruction, and tore the plastic wrapping from the case. Cruising down the new connector between county roads, my friend Tina and I listened to “Welcome to the Jungle” and she told me that I was crazy because that was certainly not music. But I was on my way – my first mini Thelma and Louise road trip!


Don’t let your tunes get you in trouble. Photo: ABC News 11

And Suddenly The Music Stopped

Suddenly, I became aware of the sound of a siren behind me. Seeing the lights in my rear-view mirror, I pulled over, my teenage heart pounding.

“Did you know that you were going 65 in a 50 zone?” the officer said to me.

Tina sat next to me, frozen.

“No, sir,” I said.

“Need your driver’s license and registration,” he said, curtly.

Driver’s license: check! What the heck does that registration look like, again? I rummaged through my glove box while Tina remained mute. Triumphantly, I handed the form to the officer through my window.

Unfolding the paper I had given him, the officer’s mouth started to twitch.

“This… is a receipt for tires,” he said, trying not to laugh. I was mortified.

He let me off with a warning.

Mazda Miata Owners Love Their CarsBack on the road with my ultimate playlist

That little traffic incident taught me a lesson about speeding but it didn’t deter my love for road-tripping with my favorite tunes. In celebration of the grace of that first warning, I’ve created a road trip playlist to share with you. These tunes will keep you singing as you roll on down the road. But, please, try to stay within the speed limits.

Oh and I left Guns N’Roses out of this compilation – I think it’s for the best.

What tunes would you add to the list? Share your favorites in the comments below.

Writer. Car fanatic. Mom. Kristin is the co-owner of auto review site Drive Mode Show and a nationally-published writer... More about Kristin Shaw