QOTD: Road Tunes, or No Tunes?

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy
qotd road tunes or no tunes

There are a select few machines on this planet in which I prefer to hear the exhaust note rather than the stereo: high strung Italians or any big V8 with a lumpy cam, for example. Noise bylaws definitely come under fire from my right foot when it’s connected to the loud pedal of a car possessing one of these engines.

By and large though, most of us need some tunes to either occupy the time, keep us awake, or simply add to the journey. I’ve a few go-to favorites in my playlist and I bet you do, too.

For long distances, I have one of two approaches. Canada’s national broadcaster, the CBC, usually ranks up there with watching chloroform evaporate in terms of being interesting. However, when driving through desolate northern New Brunswick in the dead of winter with boredom setting in but the need to watch for critters at an all-time high, I find thought-provoking debates and news coverage to be a stimulant. Maybe it keeps the neurons firing.

Ages ago, when tasked with driving a long distance, I’d deploy a game learned from writer John Phillips in which I’d hit the “Seek” button on the AM band and force myself to listen to whatever the tuner landed on until it finally faded away. In this manner, I learned more than is required by any sentient individual about Newfoundland’s cod fishery, the allocation of moose hunting licenses, and that Sue from Musgrave Harbour has lost her cell phone and would like the finder to please leave it at Velma’s convenience store, preferably before she leaves at 5 p.m. to drive to Gander. This game is much less fun now that AM radio has gone the way of Betamax.

When it comes to actual music, because I am literally twelve years old, my personal playlist includes much of the programming found on SiriusXM’s channel 51. I’ll let you look that one up yourself.

What’s your preference on a drive? Some particular genre of music? Talk radio? Or the sonorous siren of the engine that’s getting you to your destination?

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3 of 75 comments
  • Moparmann Moparmann on Mar 13, 2018

    For the science fiction fans out there, I suggest the 1978 Jeff Wayne production of "War of the Worlds", narrated by Richard Burton. Good for a long trip. :-)

    • Vulpine Vulpine on Mar 13, 2018

      Nice pick of album, especially when you take into account that one of its biggest songs was sung by The Moody Blues' Justin Hayward. On the other hand, if you like that then you would enjoy Rick Wakeman's (of Yes fame) Journey to the Center of the Earth (featuring actor David Hemmings as narrator) and Return to the Center of the Earth (featuring Sir Patrick Stewart as narrator.) You might want to consider some of Wakeman's other works as well.

  • Tsoden Tsoden on Mar 13, 2018

    Growing up my parents always insisted on the best sound system in their car... and yet they rarely used it... even to this day. When I got my first car, it had a cassette deck to which mix tapes were the norm. Later, I bought a discman and plugged it into the cassette deck with an adapter better music... then I started making mixed MP3 CD's on my Next vehicle that had a CD player. When I got a car with an AUX out port, I started using my iPod for long trips. However daily driving always consisted of the FM morning show on 89.9, followed by FM 106.9 music mix on the ride home. It's not all that often that the radio is turned off in my car.

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