ramones200We face a challenge when planning a road trip: how to fill the drive time with audio that all ages can enjoy.

Each summer, we take a family road trip to CT and NJ to see family at their summer cottages and beach condos, and we usually hit the road at least once for what seems like an interminable trip.  It’s always good to have the iPod stocked and ready with a mix of family-friendly lyrics and tunes.

Since my husband and I have an eclectic music collection, we always thought that the kids should be exposed to all sorts of music that we enjoy – all forms of rock, pop, R&B, hip-hop, country, alternative, and soul, plus the random rap, swing and lounge tunes in our library. While there are some genuinely talented children’s musicians, I have made it a personal “mom policy” to never bring that genre into my car.

The approach I take to creating the family-in-the-car playlist is FUN.  What will the kids enjoy, what is familiar so we can all sing along, what can my husband and I tolerate.  Most importantly, what can we all get silly to: air guitar, I-sing-this-part-you-sing-that-part, silly dances in our seats.

A favorite playlist seems to make it into rotation on every family jaunt; I guess you can say for us, these songs have plenty of “mileage.”

1.     Living on a Prayer, Bon Jovi

2.     MacArthur Park, Donna Summer

3.     Sweet Escape, Gwen Stefani

4.     Daddy Sang Bass, Johnny Cash

5.     Beep Beep, Louis Prima

6.     Sweet Home Alabama, Lynyrd Skynyrd

7.     I Love Music, The O’Jays

8.     Bicycle Race, Queen

9.     Jump Jive & Wail, Brian Setzer

10. Spiderman, The Ramones

11. Me & Julio Down By the Schoolyard, Simon & Garfunkel

12. The Rubberband Man, The Spinners

13. I Gotta Feelin’, The Black Eyed Peas

14. Ham & Eggs, A Tribe Called Quest

15. Where It’s At, Beck (or, as my son calls it, “Fifteen Pickles and a Microphone”) 

* #10 is from the “Saturday Morning Cartoons” covers album…a great find

What’s on your roadtrip playlist?

Nicole Minore is a mom of 2 and VP/Marketing Grok Music