When I was a kid I would ride around with my grandpa in this little Mazda pickup and we'd pass the time listening to Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings in the tape deck. Now that I'm older I find myself passing the time while driving in a similar fashion, though modern technology has blessed us with the CD player.
I've made many trips through southern Idaho recently and subsequently have a few comments on music.
First, I have a renewed appreciation for angry female music. What is angry female music? Alanis, Etheridge, Meredith (Brooks, that is), Avril, Tori Amos, and the list could continue. I've never put Sheryl Crow in this category, though "If It Makes You Happy" is easily five minutes and twenty-seven seconds of pure anger... And every now and again Sarah McLachlan counts in this category. But true female anger is best represented in the first five listed. I've been thinking about what makes these women so angry and though I can only pinpoint a few reasons, I would like to thank their Disneyland Dads, crazy ex-lovers, and/or screwed up mothers for instilling in them the anger that makes my driving experience memorable.
Without question, my little brother finds angry female music disturbing and the only song he'll even listen to is Sk8ter Boi by Avril Lavigne (for typical 14 year old boy reasons). We should take his opinion with a grain of salt. After all, he is the child that climbs into my car and insists we listen to 2 tracks on the Little Mermaid soundtrack--"Under the Sea" and "Kiss the Girl." I'm sure he'll kill me when he realizes I've divulged this secret to the world, but he has to remember, I'm equally guilty because I own the soundtrack.
While driving my older brother to dinner the other night, I was intrigued by his choice of music. Though I don't talk about this brother too often, I should because the kid cracks me up! He chose The Beach Boys and despite his inability to finish a sentence, knew every last word to "Surfin' Safari."
Back on the topic of angry females--the latest Dixie Chicks CD is one of those that you think could be somewhere down the road labeled "groundbreaking." I purchased the CD when it came out last summer and hadn't really listened to it in several months. Today I found it to be incredibly subtle and meaningful. Speaking of meaningful, I was listening to Sarah McLachlan and for the first time ever actually paid attention to "Angel." Wow. Powerful lyrics. How had I never paid attention to that unbelievably moving song?
There's a new Bowling for Soup CD. I can't even blame my younger brother for my love of this completely bizarre group. I think I am drawn to them for the same reason I love country's Big & Rich--completely random, bizarre lyrics. I'm sure you've heard their latest single, "High School Never Ends," which has some very memorable lyrics (i.e. "Katie had a baby so I guess Tom's straight" and something about Bill Gates being captain of the chess team). Anyway, though not as hilarious as Drunk Enough to Dance, the newest CD is pretty awesome.
As you can see, I have had more than my fair share of time in the car, but have been quite entertained by music. If you're trying to keep clear of the tear-jerker type music (if you're plagued by the waterworks as I am) I would definitely recommend Bowling for Soup or even the Little Mermaid soundtrack. If you're looking for a really good laugh, I have in my possession a great duet...Big Bird and Waylon Jennings.