2009 Road Trip Mix, Version 2

I’m in Canada right now (British Columbia to be more specific, [Whistler Village to be even more specific {the Mountainside Lodge to be most specific of all}]), after having spent 5 ½ days trying to get some writing done. How’d it go? Like it usually goes: not well.

Either way, however, I got a nice trip out of it, even if I do seem to get hassled by Canadian Customs nearly every time. The one time that I didn’t was in 2005, but that was probably because I crossed the border with a buddy who probably looked like a decent human being to the customs agent in the booth. Conclusion: Canadians are racist. Completely, down into their bones. You can read all about it in another post on this website.

But I digress.

(Editor's Note, 22 June 2009: When I concluded in the above paragraph that Canadians are completely racist, down into their bones, I wasn’t being serious. I was trying to riff off of my other post about Canada [also newly rewritten with its own Editor’s Note], which spoke to the nearly panic-stricken border inspection that I and my property seem to always merit. While they are not blameless as a nation, Canadians are no more nor any less racist than are any other nationalities. Surely, there are racists sprinkled throughout Canada, but it might be a fine dusting. The only thing that I can definitively say about any type of Canadian is that some Canadian Border Services Officers are not cool, man, not cool at all. I can’t believe that some of the officers with which I dealt did well on questions 13 and 19.) 

What I want to do is talk about the genius-level Road Trip Mix I put together for the two eighteen-plus-hour drives, one at the beginning and one at the end of this trip. First it starts with some problems. As soon as iTunes became iTunes Plus, I started upgrading my iTunes purchases, taking them from Protected ACC files to Purchased ACC files so that I could eventually burn them onto CDs.

So, the day before my trip, I try to put together list of songs that’ll make up one killer CD. Why only one CD? Because one blank CD was all that I had left. I’m starting with a list of 853 Purchased ACC songs. I go through that list once and pull about 350 songs onto a new playlist: 2009 Road Trip Mix. I have to get down to about 100 songs, so I've got to make some rather painful choices. My one guiding principle is that a song has to be a song that I’d like to hear as I’m driving from Madera, California (Madtown, the first city of my heart), to Whistler Village.

(I know what you're thinking. Why drive so far and for so long? A few times a year I used to drive from Madera to Seattle when I was in grad school, and it is a really amazingly beautiful drive, at least until right around the Sacramento, California, area; south of Sacramento, it’s ugly as all hell. If I could find a way to fit it into my life, I’d make that lovely drive at least once a month, no problem.)

After one more pass, I’m down to 214 songs. At this point, I’m completely flummoxed. (And the preceding sentence contains the first time that I've ever used flummoxed in a piece of writing. How was it? Just okay. Flummoxed just isn't a pretty word, but it is exactly the word that I needed in that sentence, and I felt that I had no choice but to use it. I was handcuffed, man, and there was nothing that I could do.)

I can’t think of any way to cut that list by a little more than a half. I might be able to get out one song here and there, but even that’s going to be incredibly difficult. I've already cut songs that I can’t believe that I cut.

I decide at this point that I just want to see how many gigs I have left to cut. I click on the Burn MP3 CD button on the lower-right corner of the iTunes window because I'm pretty sure that it will tell me how many gigabytes I'm over. That’s when it all falls apart. iTunes tells me that I’ll not be burning a CD because each of the songs that I've chosen is not in the proper format. Apparently, each song must be converted to the MP3 format. This can be handled, it seems, by going to the Advanced menu and scrolling down to and then clicking on the Convert Selection to MP3 command.

That seems like a pretty big commitment, and I’m no good at commitment. Also, I’m worried that I’ll somehow wreck my iTunes library or my playlists or that something else will go tragically and irrevocably wrong.

It looks like I’m screwed, and I’m a little upset. I worked for hours getting that list down to the afore-mentioned 214 songs, and it seems that, like most things in life, it was all for nothing. I have a feeling that my trip is already pre-boned, but then I remember that I have an iPod in the glove compartment of my car.

That iPod was one of my more ridiculous purchases, and ironically enough, I purchased it after my last trip to Canada, back in 2005, when I was feeling depressed that my summer was over and that I had just had the kind of really great week that I was unlikely to match anytime soon. The purchase was ridiculous because I’m nearly always either in my car, where I play actual CDs or one of my many mix CDs, or I’m in front of my laptop, from which I’m either playing songs through speakers or through earphones. I just didn’t and don’t need an iPod. Mostly, it’s gone unused. There was even a long stretch of time where I couldn’t have told you where it was.

But I did recently use that iPod for two four-hour drives that I made in April, and it was great. I went to my car, took out the iPod, synced it to my laptop iTunes library, and now had that 2009 Road Trip Mix ready for my drives. It was so goddamned easy. If I had only thought about the iPod a few hours earlier, I wouldn’t have had to have made such painful decisions about which songs to leave on that list and which to delete.

Below, you will find the final version of the 2009 Road Trip Mix. There may be some songs with which you can’t get, and I get that, but, truly, I have absolute faith in my taste because I’ve run a lot of material through the system (that’s really what I spend all of my waking hours doing), and I’ve built up some world-class filters. Nothing gets through that isn't worthy of getting through, though, again, you should understand that I want stuff to get through, that I’m rooting for stuff to get through because I want to be moved, because I’m chasing beauty the way that a junky chases his high.

Song Title -- Artist -- Album

23 -- Blonde Redhead -- 23

3 A.M. Eternal -- The KLF -- The White Room

Across the Universe -- Rufus Wainwright -- Poses

After the Love Has Gone -- Earth, Wind & Fire -- The Eternal Dance

Ah ya leil -- Shereen -- Bellydance Superstars

Alison -- Slowdive -- Souvlaki

All for You -- Janet Jackson -- All for You

American Dreaming -- Dead Can Dance -- Dead Can Dance 1981-1998 (Box Set)

Andamos Armados -- Control Machete -- Mucho Barato

Baba O'Riley -- The Who -- Who's Next

Baby Got Back -- Sir Mix-a-Lot -- Mack Daddy

Baby Please Don't Leave Me -- Buddy Guy -- Best of the Silvertone Years 1991-2005

Back in the Day -- Erykah Badu -- Worldwide Underground

Before We Begin -- Broadcast -- Haha Sound

Beginnings -- Chicago -- Chicago Transit Authority (Remastered)

Behind Blue Eyes -- The Who -- Who's Next

Beng Beng Beng -- Femi Kuti -- Shoki Shoki

Black is Black -- Rugantino Band -- Beat Italia Tour

Black Is the Color of My True Love's Hair -- The Twilight Singers -- She Loves You

Black Star -- Gillian Welch -- Black Star - EP

Blind -- Talking Heads -- The Best of Talking Heads (Remastered)

Blue Monday -- New Order -- Singles

Blues Run the Game -- Jackson C. Frank -- Troubadours of Folk - The 60s Acoustic Explosion

Born to Be Wild -- Steppenwolf -- Steppenwolf

The Boxer -- Emmylou Harris -- Emmylou Harris Anthology: The Warner / Reprise Years

Branches -- Midlake -- The Trials of Van Occupanther

Breathe -- Telepopmusik -- Genetic World

Breathe Don't Stop -- Mr. On vs Jungle Brothers -- Breathe Don't Stop - Single

Brilliant Disguise -- American Boys -- A Tribute to Bruce Springsteen

C'mon C'mon -- The Von Bondies -- Pawn Shoppe Heart

Call Me -- Aretha Franklin -- Queen of Soul - The Best of Aretha Franklin

Casimir Pulaski Day -- Sufjan Stevens -- Illinois

Chasing Pavements -- Adele -- 19

The City Limit -- The Radio Dept. -- Pulling Our Weight - EP

Cold Night for Alligators -- Roky Erickson -- Gremlins Have Pictures

Come -- Lemon Jelly -- Lemon Jelly.ky

Come Go With Me -- Exposé -- Exposé: Greatest Hits

Crazy -- Gnarls Barkley -- St. Elsewhere

Devil's Broom -- Joseph Arthur -- Our Shadows Will Remain

Dirty Epic (1994) -- Underworld -- Underworld 1992-2002

Don't Bring Me Down -- Electric Light Orchestra -- Discovery

Don't Let Go -- Pacha Massive -- La Mujer de Mi Hermano (Música Original)

Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough -- Michael Jackson -- Off the Wall

Don't Stop the Rock -- Freestyle -- Freestyle: The Ultimate Edition

Don't Wanna Know About Evil -- Beth Orton & William Orbit -- Pass in Time - The Definitive Collection

Don't You Want Me -- Jody Watley -- Jody Watley

The Dreaming Dead -- Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter -- Oh, My Girl

Drive -- Aberdeen -- Homesick and Happy to Be Here

Drive That Fast -- Kitchens of Distinction -- Capsule - The Best of K.O.D.: 1988-94

Dry the Rain -- The Beta Band -- The Three EP's

Early in the Morning -- The Gap Band -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of the Gap Band

El salam -- Hakim -- Talakik

Everyday Is Like Sunday -- Morrissey -- Viva Hate

Eye of the Tiger -- Survivor -- Survivor: Greatest Hits

Fallin' In Love -- Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds -- Echoes of Time

Feel the Love -- Arthur Loves Plastic & Lisa Moscatiello -- Troubled

Feelin' Alright -- Lulu -- What It Is! Funky Soul and Rare Grooves

Float On -- The Floaters -- Pure Slow Jams

Fool (If You Think It's Over) -- Chris Rea -- The Best of Chris Rea

Freak-A-Zoid -- Midnight Star -- Anniversary Collection

Fuck and Run -- Liz Phair -- Exile in Guyville

Get Busy -- Sean Paul -- Dutty Rock

Get Free -- The Vines -- Highly Evolved

Give Me Every Little Thing -- The Juan Maclean -- Less Than Human

Goddamn Lonely Love -- Drive-By Truckers -- The Dirty South

Going Inside -- John Frusciante -- To Record Only Water for Ten Days

Good Times -- Chic -- Party

Goodbye to My Loving You -- Jackson C. Frank -- Blues Run the Game (Expanded Deluxe Edition)

Got Your Money -- Ol' Dirty Bastard & Kelis -- Nigga Please

Guerillas in tha Mist -- Da Lench Mob -- The N.W.A Legacy, Vol. 1

Heartbeats -- José González -- Veneer

Here Before -- Vashti Bunyan -- Lookaftering

Here Comes That Rainy Day Feeling Again -- The Fortunes -- Looks Like Rain

Here's Where the Story Ends -- The Sundays -- Reading, Writing & Arithmetic

Hey There Lonely Girl -- Eddie Holman -- Broken Hearted - A Collection of the World's Best Heartbreakers

Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me -- Mel Carter -- The Best of Mel Carter

Hope There's Someone -- Antony & The Johnsons -- Hope There's Someone - EP

How Deep Is Your Love -- The Bird And The Bee -- Please Clap Your Hands - EP

Human Love -- Dirty Vegas -- One

Hunwari -- Lemongrass -- Ikebana

Hurdy Gurdy Man -- Donovan -- Donovan's Greatest Hits (Remastered)

Hurt So Bad -- The Lettermen -- Capitol Collectors Series: The Lettermen

I Am the Resurrection -- The Stone Roses -- The Stone Roses

I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever) -- Stevie Wonder -- Talking Book

I Can See Clearly Now -- Johnny Nash -- Reggae Pulse - The Hearbeat of Jamaica

I Can't Make Me -- Butterfly Boucher -- Flutterby

I Do Love You -- Billy Stewart -- One More Time: The Chess Years

I Feel for You -- Chaka Khan -- I Feel for You

I Got a Man -- Positive K -- Love Hip Hop - 12 Slammin' Hip Hop Hits

I Want You -- Marvin Gaye -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Marvin Gaye, Vol. 2 - The '70s

I Wonder If I Take You Home -- Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam -- Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam With Full Force

I'll Do for You Anything You Want Me To -- Barry White -- Just Another Way to Say I Love You

I'm a Man -- The Spencer Davis Group -- The Best of Spencer Davis Group

I'm Coming Out -- Diana Ross -- Diana (Deluxe Edition)

I'm Every Woman -- Chaka Kahn -- Rhino Hi-Five: Chaka Khan - EP

In My House -- Mary Jane Girls -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Motown '80s, Vol. 1

In Your Eyes -- Peter Gabriel -- So

Inside and Out -- Feist -- Let It Die

It Ain't Me, Babe -- Johnny Cash & June Carter -- Carryin' On With Johnny Cash & June Carter

It Beats 4 U -- My Morning Jacket -- Z

It Should Have Been You -- Gwen Guthrie -- Ultimate Collection: Gwen Guthrie

Lazy Eye -- Silversun Pickups -- Carnavas

Lead Me On -- Maxine Nightingale -- Lead Me On

Let Go -- Frou Frou -- Details

Let My Love Open the Door -- Pete Townshend -- Gold

Let the Music Play -- Barry White -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Barry White

Let's Dance -- David Bowie -- Best of Bowie

Let's Groove -- Earth, Wind & Fire -- Raise!!

Let's Stay Together -- Al Green -- Let's Stay Together

Light -- Talvin Singh -- O.K.

Lit Up -- Buckcherry -- Buckcherry

Living In America -- James Brown -- Living In America

A Lo Cubano -- Orishas -- A Lo Cubano

The Logical Song -- Supertramp -- Breakfast in America

Love Brought Me Back -- DJ Rogers -- The Message Man

Love Come Down -- Evelyn "Champagne" King -- Platinum & Gold Collection: Evelyn "Champagne" King

Love Reign O'er Me -- The Who -- Quadrophenia

Love Song -- Vashti Bunyan -- Just Another Diamond Day

Lowdown -- Boz Scaggs -- Silk Degrees

Make Love Fuck War -- Public Enemy & Moby -- Make Love F**k War - EP

Mama Made Me a Pimp -- Kennedy -- Life Is a Party

Maple Leaves -- Jens Lekman -- Oh You're So Silent, Jens

Maybe -- The Chantels -- Doo Wop Classics, Vol. 1

Mein Herz brennt -- Rammstein -- Mutter

Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology) -- Marvin Gaye -- The Very Best of Marvin Gaye

The Metro -- Berlin -- Best of Berlin 1979-1988

Midnight Confessions -- The Grass Roots -- : The Best of the Grass Roots

Midnight Rider -- The Allman Brothers Band -- Beginnings

Milk and Honey -- Jackson C. Frank -- Jackson C. Frank

Missing -- Everything But the Girl -- Amplified Heart

The Moneymaker -- Rilo Kiley -- The Moneymaker - Single

More Than a Woman -- Tavares -- Tavares: Anthology

More Than This -- Roxy Music -- The Best of Roxy Music

Never Gonna Cry Again -- Eurythmics -- In the Garden

Never My Love -- Astrud Gilberto -- Windy

Niño Bomba -- Plastilina Mosh -- Tasty + B Sides

No Parking (On the Dance Floor) -- Midnight Star -- Club Epic, Vol. 1

Not California -- Hem -- Funnel Cloud (Bonus Track)

Oh Sheila -- Ready for the World -- The Best of Ready For The World

On the Dance Floor -- Levy -- Rotten Love

One -- Mary J. Blige & U2 -- The Breakthrough (iTunes Version)

The One I Love -- David Gray -- Life In Slow Motion

(Our Love) Don't Throw It All Away -- Andy Gibb -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Andy Gibb

Oye Mi Canto -- Big Mato, Daddy Yankee, Gem Star, N.O.R.E. & Nina Skyy -- Oye Mi Canto - EP

P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing) -- Michael Jackson -- The Essential Michael Jackson

Passionate Kisses -- Lucinda Williams -- Lucinda Williams

Please Come to Boston -- Glen Campbell -- Glen Campbell In Concert

Poison Arrow (Single Version) -- ABC -- Look of Love - The Very Best of ABC

Pretty Voice -- Cloud Cult -- The Meaning of 8

Pump Up the Volume -- Colourbox -- Best of Colourbox 82/87

Respect -- Aretha Franklin -- I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You

Revelator -- Gillian Welch -- Time - The Revelator

Roscoe -- Midlake -- The Trials of Van Occupanther

Rose Hip November -- Vashti Bunyan -- Just Another Diamond Day

Round and Round -- Ratt -- The Essentials: Ratt

Rump Shaker -- Wreckx-N-Effect -- Hip Hop Gold

Run Into Flowers -- M83 -- Dead Cities, Red Seas & Lost Ghosts

Running Up That Hill -- Chromatics -- Night Drive

Sailing Man -- Neil Halstead -- Seasons - EP

Sailor -- Hem -- Rabbit Songs

Say Hello -- Deep Dish -- George Is On

Say It Right -- Nelly Furtado -- Loose (iTunes Version)

Sénégal-Brésil -- Cheikh Lo -- Lamp Fall

Shimmy Shimmy Ya -- Ol' Dirty Bastard -- The Definitive Ol' Dirty Bastard Story

Show and Tell -- Al Wilson -- The Best of Al Wilson

Silent Morning -- Noel -- Pure 80's Dance

Smile -- Lily Allen -- Smile - EP

So Into You -- Atlanta Rhythm Section -- The Best of Atlanta Rhythm Section

Something Less Than Something More -- Caitlin Cary -- Begonias

Somewhere Over the Rainbow -- Israel Kamakawiwo'ole -- Alone in IZ World

Spring -- Charalambides -- A Vintage Burden - EP

Stupid Mouth Shut -- Hem -- Rabbit Songs

Suavecito -- Malo -- Malo

Summer In Paris -- DJ Cam -- Soulshine

Take Control -- Amerie -- Take Control - Single

Tea & Sympathy -- Janis Ian -- Between the Lines

Tears All Over -- A Girl Called Eddy -- A Girl Called Eddy

Tears Are in Your Eyes -- Yo La Tengo -- And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out

Teen Angst -- M83 -- Before the Dawn Heals Us

Think -- Aretha Franklin -- Aretha Now

Tighten Up, Pt. 1 -- Archie Bell & The Drells -- Tighten Up

Time -- The Alan Parsons Project -- Platinum & Gold Collection: The Alan Parsons Project

Total Eclipse of the Heart -- Bonnie Tyler -- Faster Than the Speed of Night

Tugboat -- Galaxie 500 -- The Portable Galaxie 500

Turn Me Loose -- Loverboy -- Loverboy

Twilight Zone -- Golden Earring -- The Continuing Story of Radar Love

Umbrella -- Rihanna -- Good Girl Gone Bad

Walk On By -- Danny Vasquez -- Lo-Fi & Lonesome

Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' -- Michael Jackson -- Michael Jackson: The Ultimate Collection

The Way I Are -- Timbaland -- Shock Value

We Just Disagree -- Dave Mason -- Long Lost Friend - The Best of Dave Mason

We're All Alone -- Boz Scaggs -- Silk Degrees

Weakened State -- Sarah Harmer -- You Were Here

Welcome to the Black Parade -- My Chemical Romance -- The Black Parade

What Else Is There? -- Royksopp -- The Understanding (Limited Edition)

What'cha Gonna Do? -- Pablo Cruise -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Pablo Cruise

What's Going On -- Marvin Gaye -- Anthology Series: The Best of Marvin Gaye

While My Guitar Gently Weeps -- Todd Rundgren -- Songs from the Material World - A Tribute to George Harrison

Who Knows Where the Time Goes? -- Fairport Convention -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Sandy Denny

The Whole World Ended (The Moment You Left Me)] -- David Ruffin -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of David Ruffin

Wild Is the Wind -- Cat Power -- The Covers Record

Winter Hunter -- Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter -- Oh, My Girl

Winter Song -- Chris Rea -- The Best of Chris Rea

Yeah! -- Usher featuring Lil' Jon & Ludacris -- Confessions (Special Edition)

Year of the Cat -- Al Stewart -- Al Stewart: Greatest Hits

You Don't Have to Be a Star (To Be In My Show) -- Marilyn McCoo & Billy Davis Jr. -- I Hope We Get to Love In Time

You Dropped a Bomb On Me -- The Gap Band -- Gap Band: Ultimate Collection

You Get What You Give -- New Radicals -- Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too

You Never Wanted Me -- Jackson C. Frank -- Jackson C. Frank

You're Gonna Miss Me -- The 13th Floor Elevators -- The Very Best Of: Going Up

You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin' -- Righteous Brothers -- The Very Best of the Righteous Brothers - Unchained Melody

Young Hearts Run Free -- Candi Staton -- Warner Archives: The Best of Candi Staton

Your Mama -- Kennedy -- Your Mama - Single

Zombie -- The Cranberries -- The Cranberries: Stars - The Best of 1992-2002

Silversun Pickups

Dude, good call on "Silversun Pickups". I heard about them like two weeks ago, and I'm addicted to the song titled "Panic Switch". If you havent heard it, purchase it on iTunes.

O Canada


I'm glad to hear you're doing a post-schoolyear unwind/clear the head road trip and working at the writing. I'm on the road myself right now, though not for art or pleasure, but for obligation; and I'm sort of dying inside trying to get through this, so I'm comforted to find your post.

The ipod is your friend. Glad you two have become better acquainted.

-Es Cee

Downtown Vancouver

I thought about you on Saturday as I was starting my trip back to
California and drove past the Vancouver Art Gallery. I was going to text
you a picture, but I wasn't sure if I was still solid on your number.