I’ve written about our life in the car before. We spend an awful lot of time in our car, and as parents know, travelling with kids can sometimes be a little… painful. One of the things that I have conditioned the kids to look forward to when they get in the car is music. To coax Finley into the car when we’re off out, I use the promise of music as a fail-free way of easing him towards the front-door.
So what do we listen to? Fortunately for me, the likes of ‘Wheels on the Bus’ and ‘Humpty Dumpty’ aren’t on our playlist. But here’s what is. This is the current top 10 tracks that my two, particularly Fin, absolutely adore. I am conscious of the risk of damaging their eardrums, so keep the volume at an acceptable level to them, although Finley does request that I turn the music up loud.
So here goes, (in no particular order)…
(10) Lynyrd Skynyrd – ‘What’s your Name’
I’ve been listening to this band since I can remember, as my parents were huge fans when they were younger (they still are). I’ve been playing one of their numerous compilation albums in the car a lot, and this song is a particular favourite of Finley’s. The content is a little inappropriate, but he is too young to understand the meaning of songs, and there is no profanity. So happy days.
(9) The Darkness – Most songs
I used to listen to The Darkness when they were new on the scene. I am a huge fan of Queen, and I got into them because the vocals of The Darkness reminded me of Queen. Finley dug out their album Permission to Land from a cupboard somewhere at my parents’ house a few months ago and insisted I play it. We’ve pretty much not turned it off since. There are a few tracks on there which I can’t play to the kids because of profanity, but there isn’t much on this album that they don’t listen to. We’ve since been listening to their other albums as well, and there are too many tracks to list that we like. Here is one of our favourites. This is the clean version, but the original is much better.
(8) Aerosmith – ‘Train Kept a Rollin’’
Finley loves this one with a capital ‘L’. An old rhythm and blues song by Tiny Bradshaw that Aerosmith (amongst others) covered. I naughtily used it for a YouTube video that I made for a review of the Watercress Line last year, and we now play it in the car. The kids both give a round of applause at the end of this one (a mark of a particularly fine song, in their opinion).
(7) Queen Adreena – Kitty Collar Tight
I first began listening to Queen Adreena back in my university days, and I used to play this track to death from my room in the student house I lived in. Yes, another one with questionable content, but they can’t actually hear any lyrics, let alone decipher the meaning. This one is all about that banging riff.
(6) Wishbone Ash – ‘The King Will Come’
Another one from my parents’ musical era of the 70s. They were both huge rock fans, and mum tells me that she used to play this one very loud from her nurses’ digs when she was doing her training. Hmm, a bit like me blearing out Queen Adreena from my nurses’ digs then? I’ve loved this track for years. It is so British, so 70s and so rock. The kids always listen quietly to this one.
(5) Neil Young – ‘Old Man’
A recent addition to our car playlist, as I ‘borrowed’ my dad’s Neil Young album a few weeks ago. This one is Finley’s favourite on the album, so much so that I recently caught him singing it in the living room. I was amazed that he had paid that much attention to the lyrics of the song.
(4) Michael Jackson – ‘Give in to Me’
Featuring Guns N’ Roses’ Slash, this is one of my favourite of Jackson’s songs. I recently rediscovered it on an old Michael Jackson album that Finley uncovered (at the same time he uncovered The Darkness’ album) and we love it. For me, it is Slash’s guitar playing that makes the song.
(3) Thin Lizzy – ‘Whiskey in the Jar’
Oh my goodness, this song is just so mesmerising, I could listen to it over and over again. A traditional Irish song that has been covered many times, this version by Thin Lizzy is just outstanding. The guitar hook by Eric Bell on the Fender Strat is to die for, and makes the song for me. Thin Lizzy always make me think of my parents, as they saw them live once or twice back in the day. Mum has particularly fond memories of Phil Lynott ‘masterfully playing his bass guitar in tight leather trousers’. Tight leather trousers or not, Thin Lizzy seem to run in our family, as this track has clicked with the kids.
(2) Lynyrd Skynyrd – ‘Working for MCA’
So Skynyrd are rapidly becoming Finley’s favourite band, and there isn’t much of their repertoire that he doesn’t like. The guitar riff on this track is da bomb (I don’t use this term in real life) and this entire track is just a total banger. Another band that my parents got to see live, they run deep in our veins. My brother was named after their (then) bassist Leon Wilkeson, we had a little family dance to ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ at my wedding and one of my earliest memories is of dad continuously playing the riff to ‘I Need You’ on his guitar. (Now I do exactly the same on my guitar.) Finley loves this track and both kids give this one a round of applause when it finishes.
(1) Whitesnake – ‘Still of the Night’
This one is a fairly new addition to our car playlist, although I’ve had the album for a while. ‘Still of the Night’ is so popular with the kids that not only does it get a round of applause at the end, I get requests for encores each time it finishes. Do you know what? I oblige each time, because I can’t get enough of this song either. That incredible voice from David Coverdale is straight out of Yorkshire too. Amazing.
So there you have it, our top 10 car playlist to keep the kids happy and entertained during our car journeys. I would love to hear about the tracks that you all listen to in your cars with (or without) your kids.