Top Ten Ultimate Drive time Classics!

Published on 17 April 2020


What’s the point of driving if you don’t have great tunes to accompany you?

Certain songs just improve a car journey, making you feel amazing whilst you negotiate the highways and byways of modern life. The correct song selection can set you up for the entire day: it can motivate and energise you to get out there and succeed!

With this in mind, we’ve carefully curated our ten favourite songs for sticking on in the car. We’ve arranged the songs for maximum effectiveness. Each tune represents an optimistic fist in the air (when it’s safe and responsible to do so, drivers!), a victorious salute to the greatness of music. Feel the power of Rock flow through your veins as you seize the day and grab the triumph that is yours for the taking!


Gimme All Your Lovin’ – ZZ Top

Let us begin as we mean to go on! This rocktastic classic from our favourite hirsute Texans gets the whole Boogie-Woogie off to a great start, with a non-stop swagger and some deft use of tambourine to elevate the groove. This song also contains the single greatest note ever played on an electric guitar. Listen out at precisely the 1 minute mark in the video below if you don’t believe us...


More Than A Feeling – Boston

Is there anyone in the world who doesn’t understand how great this song is? We hope not! It’s a mini-epic, with everything a transcendent Rock classic needs: acoustic bits, twin-harmony guitar solos, a chorus to die for and an overall feeling of euphoria that is massively infectious.


The Touch – Stan Bush

It’s almost impossible to believe that there can be a more optimistic and ‘winning’ song than Boston’s sterling effort, but there is! This must be one of the most potent power-anthems in existence! Stan Bush goes on positivity meltdown with immortal lines like ‘You’re at your best when the going gets tough, you’ve been put to the test but it’s NEVER enough!’ I mean, really: how can you possibly fail with a soundtrack like that? Whether you heard this as a youngster on the animated Transformers Movie, or heard Mark Wahlberg butchering it on Boogie Nights, the effect is the same: massive empowerment. You’ve got The Touch!


St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion) – John Parr

Now we’re really cooking, so we need a tune that can sustain that ridiculous sense of self-belief given to us by Stan Bush. This motivational jewel of a song is perfect. Bringing the kind of melody and voice that could only have come from the most aspirational of decades – the 80s - this song lets us fly high with eagles: no, HIGHER! Indeed. Heraldic keyboard parts elevate the theme of great achievement to almost impossible heights. Sing as you’re winning! It’s quite possible to not even realise that this is the theme tune to an 80s Brat-pack movie, such is it’s complete and utter self-contained genius.


Panama – Van Halen

If John Parr’s tune lacked one single element, it was a stone-cold stunner of a guitar riff. This, then, would be the antidote! Goodness me! The intro is banging enough, but then the song drops into one of Eddie’s greatest rhythm moments like it ain’t no thing. Watch your driving speed when this one’s on, okay? That main stomping riff is what wheel spins and engine revving is all about! In fact, Van Halen understood this song’s purpose so well, they put revving engines into the middle section of the song! Good guys. What’s Panama about? Who cares? Turn it up!


Here I Go Again – Whitesnake

Conversely, if Van Halen’s riff monster lacked one tiny thing, it’s maybe a truly great chorus. Don’t get us wrong, Panama has a good chorus, but it’s nothing like David Coverdale’s magnificent efforts here. Great verses, a superb singalong chorus and some gorgeously expensive production values make this a song that deserves to be played forever.


Bat Out of Hell – Meatloaf

We’ve been driving for a while, but there’s still a fair distance to go. We need a long-form narrative song, a story to keep us going with drama, energy and a storyline to boot. Who better than Meatloaf? Who indeed!

This is one of the big man’s most revered cuts, and everything about it screams ROCK EPIC at us, from the huge drum grooves to the melodic guitar solos (plural) to the obviously supersonic voice over the top of it all. If Bruce Springsteen was (even) more melodramatic, he’d want to sound like this. There are dynamic changes aplenty, and the lyrics nail the curiously powerful sentimental/defiant mix of emotions that Meatloaf songs repeatedly excel at.

If you have a passenger or two with you, why not try singing the vocal harmonies? If you are driving alone, just let rip at the top of your voice! Promise us you'll be careful of Air Guitar moments, yeah? Hands on the wheel!


Live and Let Die – Guns ‘n’ Roses

Ok, we’ve nearly arrived at our destination. We just need a magnificent drive anthem to get us through that last push. If only there was like an 80s Hard Rock cover of a James Bond song! That would be perfect...

Hey! There we are! Nobody can argue with the ‘diieeeeeeeee’ breakdown and subsequent Rock Out moment we get here. Its what musical instruments were made for! In full disclosure, we may kind of still think Macca’s version is the best, but for this playlist, Slash and Axl get our vote!

Now, if you already reached your destination by the time this song comes on, perhaps save it for the way back. It’s known as a most excellent ‘sunglasses donning’ tune, especially if you carefully time your engine revs to the riff kicking in. Satisfaction is guaranteed. Pay no attention to the naysayers, just think of the glorious triumph!


Don’t Fear the Reaper - Blue Oyster Cult

We’re on our way back now. Our commitment to Rock is stronger than ever, and our day has been entirely successful, thanks to the inspirational powers of Rock that levelled us up on our initial journey. We are keen to keep that power, but perhaps bring it back ever so slightly. After all, it’s getting late and the sun is setting beautifully in the distance...

Blue Oyster Cult actually have a ton of other songs that are all really good, but none of them matter when you write something like this! It’s a timeless, gorgeous Soft-Rock classic, filled with mystery, romance, danger and more than a hint of the supernatural. We don’t want the radio edit, we want the full length masterpiece with the insanely dramatic bit in the middle! It’s quite a surprise if you’ve been brought up on the edit, but we need that jolt of energy to keep us going.

 Is Buck Dharma one of the most underrated guitarists in all of Rock? We think so. His melodic lead playing is sublime, to say the least. What a treat! His six-string skills elevate an already great song into the pantheon of everlasting brilliance. Extra Rock Points go to him for writing and singing the song in the first place (he’s not the band’s lead singer): way to go, Buck! 

Now, we have one last space to fill in our top ten drive time anthems list. We’ve just enjoyed some world-class lead guitar action and we want more! What kind of song would fit our laid back, sunset, guitar playing mood...? Oh, we know...


Hotel California – The Eagles

Perfect. We can almost hear the clink of ice in our Margaritas as we picture getting back home, slinking down into our outdoor hot tub and staring out at the sun setting over the beach with this gently playing in the background. Ah, one day...

Yes, we felt like there is no better way to finish off our rocking journey than by listening to those great chords, that tempo, and those unequalled guitar solos at the end. Bliss.


Final Thoughts

How did you get on with our Ultimate Drivetime Playlist? We bet we missed out on some of your favourites, didn’t we? Bohemian Rhapsody, right? Yeah, it’s a truly amazing song, but it didn’t actually feel right in here. Hey, if you’re on a longer journey, why not add it in?

We hope you’ve felt the healing and motivational power of Rock. These great songs are all potent talismans of positive energy. They are available to you to use when you need them, be that at the gym, whilst doing the dishes, or, like here, when out making journeys in your car.

The Power of Rock compels you!


Thanks for reading


Ray McClelland

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