There are actually two songs by Golden Earring that are must-have's on my iPod - the aforementioned Radar Love which was released in 1973, climbed to #13 on the US charts, and was dubbed one of the Top Ten Driving Songs of All Time by music critic Bill Lamb; and 1982's Twilight Zone. Written by George Kooymans, founder of the band, Twilight Zone climbed to #10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the Billboard Top Tracks chart making it the band's only #1 hit in the country.
A lot of that was probably due to what was then a fledgling little music network called MTV - which actually showed lots and lots of music videos back then! One of the first to feature a cinematic storyline and dance choreography, Twilight Zone's music video features a storyline with lead singer Barry Hay as an espionage agent who is apprehended by three henchmen (played by the other members of the band - Rinus Gerritsen - bass and keyboards, Cesar Zuiderwijk - drums and percussion, and George Kooymans - guitarist and vocalist).
The song, which was inspired by the famous TV series of the same name, paints the portrait of "a double-crossed messenger, all alone" who is trying to carry out his mission only to find himself betrayed at every turn starting with the very first words of the song - "Somewhere in a lonely hotel room there’s a guy starting to realize that eternal fate has turned it's back on him" - and continuing right through to the chorus:
"Help, I'm stepping into the Twilight ZoneWhat really makes this song one of my very favorites - especially for a turn behind the wheel - is the instrumental break that blends Kooymans' hard-hitting almost-bluesy guitar work with some kick-ass percussion by Zuiderwijk along with just enough synthesizer from Gerritsen to make this a really good 80's tune. My biggest problem with it is being able to drive while tapping my foot to the beat and keeping myself from singing along if there's someone else in the car!
This is a madhouse, Feels like being cloned
My beacon's been moved under moon and star
Where am I to go now that I've gone too far?"
As an added bonus for Jamie, I thought I'd throw in another video of a song that Amanda and I always play when taking a road trip whether it be to Baltimore, the Pennyslvania Dutch County, the middle of Massachusetts, Sleepy Hollow in New York, or pretty much anywhere else we've traveled to ... not only has it got a very snappy beat but I'm pretty sure Jamie is going to love the "star" of the video!
So how about you? Got a favorite song or two for when you hit the road? Let me know and if it's good, I promise to add it to my iPod for my own future travels!