Road Music

As a general rule, I don’t listen to music in the car, other than perhaps Dallas-Fort Worth’s classical music station WRR (101.1 FM) if I’m caught in a traffic jam.

On long trips, however, and especially driving through the bleak nothingness  that is northwest Texas, some sterner stuff is needed. Here’s what I brought along for this particular trip:

  • Steely Dan: Citizen Steely Dan
  • Procol Harum: Prodigal Stranger, Shine On Brightly
  • Lindisfarne: Magic In The Air
  • Kate Bush: The Kick Inside
  • Chicago: Greatest Hits Vol I and II
  • Genesis: Duke, …And Then There Were Three
  • Level 42: Running In The Family, World Machine
  • Joe Walsh: Look What I Did (greatest hits)
  • Wishbone Ash: Time Was (greatest hits)
  • Earl Klugh: Heartstring, Living Inside Your Love
  • Strawbs: Bursting At The Seams
  • Peter Skellern: Sentimentally Yours, Cheek To Cheek

…and some classical stuff that nobody’s interested in: Schumann, Rachmaninoff, Saint-Saëns, Chopin, the usual stuff.

Yeah, it’s a strange assortment. I like variety in my music. And yes, they’re all CDs. I see no reason to buy online music when I already have most of what I like to listen to.



  1. I’m partial to prog rock for long roadtrips. Long, complex music is just the thing for long sections of road. Lots of Pink Floyd, Genesis, and Jethro Tull.

  2. So, Kim Du Toit likes Kate Bush. I think I truly learned something about you today, Kim. Kate Bush is a guilty pleasure of mine. I could go on at length, but won’t.

  3. Why not just put all the CD contents into your phone and play from it through the car sound system via a data connection or a patch cable into the car’s aux port?

    I spent the necessary time years ago putting all of the tunes I liked onto a computer, then USB chips and finally my smart phones.

    My music directory uses 6.5GB to store 2381 pieces. Some of them I don’t like much, but I have them because my wife or kids like them, or they have some sentimental value. Paul Mauriat’s ‘Love is Blue’ was the first tune I ever ‘slow danced’ with a girl and just hearing 3 bars of it fires me back 50 years to the school cafeteria with the lights turned low. I cannot for the life of me remember who the girl was, but wow, I sure remember how she felt.

    The player software lets me rate the tunes and play the low rated ones not all or seldom.

  4. Maybe nobody else cares for classical, but I sure do. The only way I kept sane for two years of commuting to Washington DC was a steady diet of classical. Believe it or not, they had a commercial station that broadcast nothing but.

  5. I was talking to my daughter the other day and the topic of CDs came up. Her generation has very little use for physical media. Us old farts still use CDs. I even have some of those obsolete things called cassette tapes. Don’t even ask about my ancient vinyl.

      1. Haven’t listened to 78s since I was a kid and we had an old crank Victrola in the basement. I do have some 45s dating from the 40s and 50s, but most of my vinyl is LPs from the late 60s, 70s, and early 80s.

      1. >CD means I own it

        I own my files just as much. I have my entire collection uploaded to Google Play Music for convenience, but my primary copy is on a server at home. There’s also a copy on a MicroSD card in my phone (about 40 GB for over 12k files), but I’m still figuring out what software would be best to play from that. Backups are on another server in my office, as well as on a couple binders full of BD-Rs. As long as my computers boot up (or at least as long as I can cobble together something that reads BD-Rs), even TEOTWAWKI would be hard-pressed to make my data (including media) inaccessible. 🙂

        Generally speaking, if I don’t have a clear path to removing whatever DRM is on a cloud offering, I don’t buy it. iTunes music was crackable back in the day, before Apple made it no longer necessary by ditching DRM. Kindle and Nook ebook DRM schemes are crackable; iBooks, not so much AFAICT. Guess where I buy ebooks?

  6. I’ve been wallowing in The Very Best of INXS, The Call (Let the Day Begin), U2 (Joshua Tree), Dire Straits (Communique), K.D. Lang (Absolute Torch and Twang) and Derek and the Dominoes (Layla).

    1. The new touring bikes from Harley only play digital in addition to the AM/FM bands Wish I was able to transfer my LPs to MP3. Live Baby Live gets heavy rotation, along with The Call. That album is in my top 5 all time. Long trips, Live Bullet is up there.

      1. >Wish I was able to transfer my LPs to MP3.

        This will do what you want:

        Use it to connect your turntable to your computer. Read in an entire side of a record at a time, split it into multiple tracks, and save each track to a file. It also serves as a preamp that you can use with newer A/V receivers that often lack a phono input, and it can also be used with your tape decks (cassette, 8-track, reel-to-reel, whatever) to convert those media as well.

  7. > …and some classical stuff that nobody’s interested in: Schumann, Rachmaninoff, Saint-Saëns, Chopin, the usual stuff.

    Steady on!

    My car radio is tuned to Classic FM. My preferences tend to the orchestral rather than the vocal, but I do enjoy oratorios.

    Have you tried listening to JJ Fux?

  8. I am very much into Progressive Rock, but other than the Wishbone Ash I don’t listen to any on your list there. My long road trip songs would be more like a lot of King Crimson, Yes, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Hawk Wind, Can, Rush, Santana, Traffic, Zappa, and maybe some David Bowie, Neik Young and various obscure bands worked in.

    For the classical – I like Schumann but don’t care for the others you mentioned (I don’t listen to any piano centric music for instance). I listen to a lot of Beethoven, Wagner, Schubert, Brahms, Bach, Haydn, Vivaldi, etc.

    Throw some blues and jazz in there for spice too.

    I digitized all my CDs and tapes a few years ago. I keep them on a hard drive vice the cloud (which I refuse to use). Much more convenient.

  9. Level 42….Mark King was a big influence on my bass playing way back when. Nowadays, not so much. Still, great band. I had both of those cd’s. Lost them in the divorce, due to my ex being in a burn everything mood.

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