The American Trucker: A Playlist

Mar 7, 2016

Picture this: the nation listens spell-bound - to a stand-off on the interstate between state police, the national guard and an organized group...helicopters swirl in the sky. The rebels are angry, they're fortified by heavy machinery, a truckload of explosives and are threatening to break through every blockade the cops set up. 

Hollywood 2016? Nope, this impasse played out on the radio...Convoy topped the pop charts in 1975 - an unprecedented crossover hit for classic trucker country - songs that celebrated men driving 19-wheelers across the nation's freeways as blue collar heroes. In an article for Pacific Standard magazine, Alison Fensterstock looked into the rise and fall of the trucker as an American hero in song.   

There is a much longer playlist over at Pacific Standard, but we've compiled a "best hits" list of the songs Virginia and Alison discuss in their conversation to get you started. 

Convoy - C.W. McCall

"...there's a romance to being out there on the road, getting things done. And there's also just, country music just does sadness so wonderfully well."

Six Days on the Road - Dave Dudley

Phantom 309 - Red Sovine

"Red Sovine is the king of the tear-jerker."

Giddy-Up Go - Red Sovine

Giddy-Up Go Answer - Minnie Pearl

"You have very few songs that actually put the woman in the driver's seat...far as truckers of color, there's again novelty songs."

Little Pink Mack - Kay Adams

CB Savage - Rod Hart

Can't Stop Loving You - Soul Dog (Carl Marshall)

We want to hear from you! Let us know what your favorite trucker song is in the comments below or on Facebook or Twitter