As a new resident of Los Angeles and new car owner, I spend a lot of time now thinking about cars and music. Aside from when I used to tape songs off the radio to cassette tapes to make mix tapes, I have never spent a lot of time listening to the radio outside of a car. So when I was in New York, I had no clue what was on the radio except from the daily trip into the deli across the street from my apartment. But now I’m all about listening to the radio whenever I’m in the car.
I’ve also always been a Car Singer. I give really impassioned performances, I carefully pick out playlists for long drives and when I was a kid my treat would be listening to “It’s the End of the World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)” when we were on long car rides. Don’t make me sing on stage by myself but if I’m in a car I am rocking out and no, I don’t care that you can see me.
Then I realized, duh, this happens in movies and TV shows ALL THE TIME. So here is a look back at some of my favorite music in car moments from movies and TV.
We’ll start with this since it includes my aforementioned go-to car song. Oh, Tommy Boy, I do love you.
I remember we got our VHS copy of Wayne’s World from McDonald’s. (For proof, please check out this commercial.) Since we weren’t usually allowed McDonald’s the idea of getting to eat McDonald’s AND get a VHS (really, for my mom) was amazing to me.
Anyway, this song is great, this scene is great and everyone should sing to this song at some point in a vehicle.
Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle
If you tell me you’ve never sung along to “Hold On” in a car or on the street or in your office in the middle of the day or just in the shower, you’re a big fat liar.
This is quick and they go through a couple songs before “Hold On” but you can’t help but get happy when you see them singing along.
Hold onto your butts, guys. Oh MAN do I love this movie. And this scene in particular. I am a Tom Cruise Lover through and through (I mean, look, I don’t want to marry the guy or anything but he is a MOVIE STAR in the truest sense of the term and I respect that so much.)
And to continue the Cameron Crowe love fest (I mean #humblebrag but he follows me on twitter so we’re clearly buds) let’s explore this intensely emotional scene from Almost Famous which I want playing on the inside of my eyeballs for infinity and beyond. (They’re on a bus not in a car but cut me some slack, okay?)
I can say, as a girl, I’ve done this before with my friends. I mean, sure, I’ve also sung along to “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” in the car but before we had “Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood (I’m not sure why I’m choosing now to compare these songs) we had R.E.S.P.E.C.T.
How I Met Your Mother
Now, this is a TV show, but don’t be scared. This song was very important to me growing up and seeing it resurface in How I Met Your Mother made me extremely happy. The idea of having this particular song playing on loop in your car is so perfect to the idea of “I want to murder this song but I also need to get all the da-da-das right.”
Oh, Zoolander. You better believe when this movie came out I couldn’t stop saying, “A center for ants?! How can we be expected to teach children how to read if they can’t even fit inside the ?!” over and over again.
But the true highlight of this movie, for me, is the gas fight scene. I could watch this on loop for hours and never stop laughing. They’re not singing along but I don’t care.
So go sing in your car, you guys! And probably film it. For me. Send it to me later. Okay, cool.