En Route: A Travel Mix Tape


I was just going to name this playlist “Songs That Make Me Feel Introspective and Self-Reflecting Whenever I’m In A Car Ride For More Than An Hour,” but ya know. It’s been a minute since I’ve had to make a playlist for a road trip, so I figured making one for my nearly 2 day trip to Colorado was much needed. There’s some old classics like The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, sung by Joan Baez or Never Going Back Again by Fleetwood Mac. I also threw in some oldies only I know because of my dad’s obscure music taste such as Lonesome Traveler by The Limeliters (play this song when you’re the one driving the night shift across a state), so I encourage you to give them a try. Either way, most of the older songs on here, including Tonight She Comes by The Cars or Chiquitita by ABBA are an ode to my dad and all the road trips he used to take us on — he was definitely always the designated DJ in the car, but I only realized when I was older how great some of his own mix tapes were. He used to joke that all he needed to stay up while driving a long trip was a Coca-Cola and some upbeat folk or rock music.

While this playlist first started out as just simply a road trip playlist, but as I was looking through songs while I was on the road, I realized a lot of them were either passed down from my dad or similar to his favorites. I found myself trying as hard as I could to try and remember all the songs he ever played for me in the car. I remember how excited he used to get, how it gave him energy and inspiration during the drive — I could almost hear him saying “Wow, do you hear that? Do you hear how the music changes in that part of the song?" as he lifted one of his hands off the wheel. It’s weird how music can hold a piece of a person after they’re gone. So I realized that this track list would have to be something that’s a bit more in remembrance of him, or at least songs that I wish I could show him. For example, I have the song Somebody That I Used To Know by Gotye on here because I specifically remember playing it for my dad during a long car ride and he replayed it not once, not twice but three times, saying “This is good, I like it,” and I remember being so happy and surprised that he liked a song I suggested. So on this list you’ll find some newer songs that I either think are inspired by my dad’s taste, such as Postcard by First Aid Kit, as well as some fast pace tracks such as Heavy, California by Jungle to keep you up (maybe not my dad’s taste per se, but he would like the high energy of it). To close it out, I have some slower songs by Joshua James to help you fall asleep and dream about all the places you’re going to go, or think about the places you went to.

Happy Listening!

Travel, PlaylistsArbela Capas