Sia to Steppenwolf. Iggy Pop to Ziggy Stardust. The White Stripes to the Black Keys. That’s what you can expect from YHA’s ‘On The Road’ Spotify playlist, but if that doesn’t scratch your itch for road trip tunes, here’s another 20 tracks to get your motor running.
Paul Kelly’s voice is about as dry as the Stuart Highway on a baking hot January’s day, and this track about shedding responsibility provides the perfect soundtrack when you’re cruising along it.
Okay, fine, technically this pair of bespectacled Scots were havering about a walk rather than a drive. But it’s not a proper road trip without this banger bringing out the call and response between the front and back seats.
Springsteen named his greatest hits Road Trip: 40 Years of the Boss, and this ode to the road is a lock for this list.
Great tune, Trace. Just keep an eye out for speed cameras.
The Eagles’ debut single is something of a love letter to life on the road, with a take-home message we could all heed: “Don’t let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy”.
Before Bono appointed himself the moral guardian of the universe, he actually made some pretty decent music, including this song about a malfunctioning GPS.
Fun fact No.1: before Johnny Cash and others took it abroad, this tune was penned by Australian country singer Geoff Mack and made famous by fellow Aussie Lucky Starr in the early ‘60s. Fun fact No.2: YHA has hostels in five places mentioned in the original lyrics (Murwillumbah, Darwin, Coolangatta, Canberra and Collaroy).
This macabre song takes a cheery look at our collective impending doom – because hey, it’s all about the journey rather than the destination, right?
If this one doesn’t get your passengers enthusiastically singing along, boot them out on the side of the road and pick up some hitchhikers who possess a better taste in music.
Don’t let the dozens of cheesy kids movies that have hijacked this tune overshadow its breakthrough appearance in Easy Rider (1969), when you could practically hear an engine growl in the guitar riff.
Another song that owes its legendary status to a film – this time Almost Famous (2000), where Elton John’s dulcet tones lead a memorable tour bus singalong.
This sobering tale about the dreary side of the American dream suits the tail end of a long day’s drive when all you feel like is a warm shower and a comfy YHA bed. Side note: who gives their kid the middle name ‘Cougar’?
And this amped-up track gives you the energy you need to keep exploring the next day.
You know those songs where everyone in the car only mumbles the verses but can belt out the chorus word-for-word perfect? This is one of those songs.
“Jump in, let's go. Lay back, enjoy the show. Everybody gets high, everybody gets low. These are the days when anything goes.” Preach, sister.
You can file this one right alongside Sheryl Crow in the ‘overly obvious symbolism’ category.
Making the long, dusty journey to Uluru? Just pop this Aussie classic on repeat.
This song’s so long you could flick it on in Adelaide and almost arrive at Uluru by the time it’s finished.
This modern classic was released in 2007. 2007! How old does that make you feel?
You can hardly understand a word but there’s probably some obtuse metaphor about finding your direction in life if you listen hard enough and skip all the stuff about Siamese cats and Napoleon in rags.