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Top Ten Songs About Cars

With the freedom, pride, escapism and joy that comes with owning a car you love, it’s no surprise that decades of music have brought decades of classic songs dedicated to the automobile. Here is a list of the top 10, spanning genres and eras and each bringing their own message and style.

1. Little Deuce Coupe - The Beach Boys (1963)

Where better to start than a rock and roll classic by one of the biggest American rock bands of all time. Opening with “I’m not braggin’ babe so don’t put me down, but I’ve got the fastest set of wheels in the town”, this two minute wonder tells of the adoration of the 32 Ford Coupe, aka, the Deuce Coupé.

2. No Particular Place to Go - Chuck Berry (1964)

It may not be his signature number but it’s close and goes a long way to express a love for driving: “Riding along in my automobile, with no particular place to go.”

3. Drive my Car - The Beatles (1965)

The 60s was a huge era for songs about cars, which isn’t surprising given the boom in the industry. Here, McCartney penned his own love for the car with one of the Beatles’ famous infectious hooks.


4. Mustang Sally - Wilson Pickett (1966)

Conjuring images of promiscuous women driving fast cars, Wilson Pickett made Mustang Sally famous with his smooth soul take on the classic line “All you wanna do is ride around, Sally.”

5. Mercedes Benz - Janis Joplin (1970)

Nothing says ‘I want a new car’ than a song written as a prayer. Recorded in just one take, this was among the last recordings Joplin ever made, as she died three days later. It has been covered countless times and was finally utilised by Mercedes in their TV advertisements in the 90s.

6. I’m in Love with my Car - Queen (1975)

The only song entirely written by Roger Taylor from their album A Night at the Opera (and first thought of as a joke by the band), this song does nothing more than represent Taylor’s love for cars.

7. Paradise by the Dashboard Light - Meatloaf (1977)

He may be most famous for imagery of motorbikes flying out of the mouth of hell, but this classic about young lovers from Meatloaf’s debut album is absolutely timeless.

8. Cars - Gary Newman (1979)

“Here in my car, I feel safest of all. I can lock all my doors, it’s the only way to live… in Cars.” With Newman’s personal life in mind, there is an argument that this song’s handful of sentences has a deeper meaning involving depression and isolation. However, to the listener who just enjoys the song, it’s very much about escaping in our 4-wheeled friend.

9. Driving in My Car - Madness (1982)

“I’ve been driving in my car… I drove along the A 45...” Full of simple and modest lyrics, there are few songs that are as catchy or true to life than this highly relatable classic from one of England’s biggest ever ska bands.

10. Buck Rogers - Feeder (2001)

“He’s got a brand new car, looks like a jaguar. It’s got leather seats - it’s got a CD PLAYER! PLAYER! PLAYER!” Buck Rogers is a belter; one of those songs you know even if you think you don’t. Although the title bares little meaning (as it references a futuristic cartoon) it remains a hugely infectious radio hit that will be forever associated with in-car music and fancy seat apparel.

Offbeat  25/04/2014 17:00:38

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