by Christian Morrissey
Host, "Notes from the Underground," Wednesdays 4-6 pm on WGTB
I have amassed quite a collection of playlists – I prefer to spend my free time creating playlists instead of watching TV, reading, or… well… doing homework. As such, I have amassed quite a collection. In a weekly column, I will share with you all some of my oddest lists.
Get Away Songs: This collection highlights the most ideal songs to blast as you hop into your get-away car after pulling a heist. Yes, it is a soundtrack for bank robberies – more specifically, the immediate moment post-heist. Check out the playlist below, and the full story behind the tracks after the jump!
1. T. Rex “Bang A Gong” – So Conan O’Brian tells this story about his time at the Harvard Lampoon which is really where I got the idea to make this playlist. Apparently, Adam West, the original Batman, came to the university to give some speech to the students back in the 80’s. I have no idea what the subject could have possibly been, but nonetheless, he gave a speech. For some reason, his original costume was on stage too as a display. Conan and his motley crew thought it would be funny to steal the suit, just as the villain Penguin may have done on the original show. To get the full effect, you should really hear Conan tell the story. But, after they hit the lights and grabbed the suit, Conan jumped into the getaway car and they blasted this T. Rex classic as they drove off. I believe Conan claims it’s the coolest he has ever felt, driving away after a “heist” with this song blasting. Makes complete sense.
2. Golden Earring “Radar Love” – By the time you reach the climax of this song, if you aren’t at least five miles from “the heat,” you are bound to get caught.
3. The Hollies “Long, Cool Woman (In A Black Dress)” – Tarantino would have a field day with this song. It could easily be in Reservoir Dogs after the diamond heist. A bit dreamy to begin with, then full-on blues-inspired rock n’ roll. What motivated you’re heist, anyway?
3. Dick Dale “Gypsy Fire” – This one is a bit more subversive, a little evil maybe. If its blasting, you are probably fleeing not only with a ton of cash, but with someone’s broken heart, too. Or maybe the cops are hot on your tail. Either way, you better high-tail it outta there. Quick.
4. Liquid Liquid “Cavern” – This one must only be played if you just pulled a secret heist somewhere in downtown New York, late at night. Liquid Liquid were part of 99 Records, the label that hosted the majority of “No Wave” artists in the late 70’s and early 80’s. And yes, “Cavern” is what Grandmaster Flash samples/copies for “White Lines.” As such, you probably just stole a kilo of coke if you’re listening to this one. This means you are paranoid as all hell – this song captures that emotion perfectly.
5. Velvet Underground “Foggy Notion” – You better be wearing sunglasses if you are listening to this one. Why? A.) It’s the Velvet Underground and B.) The five-o are looking for you: be inconspicuous.
6. Black Betty “Ram Jam” – Perhaps the most exciting get-away song of all time. You must have pulled quite the heist for this one… we are talking Vegas, baby. Hide out in the desert. Drive off into the sunset. Enjoy this badass tune, you badass – it took quite the set to rip off a casino.
7. Creedence Clearwater Revival “Green River” – Do you have to be in the south to enjoy this one? No, but it’ll help. At this point, the cops aren’t really chasing you… but the sheriff definitely is.
8. Beep Beep & The Road Runners “True Love Knows” – Garage rock rarity. Wouldn’t it be great if you had a beach-side hideout? Like a safe house on the Baja Peninsula where you could store all your cash and listen to garage tunes like this all day? You better lay low for a while, sounds like a good plan.
9. Joe Jackson “One More Time” – The opening riff kicks you ass into an energetic frenzy. The running bass reminds you to take off quickly. The lyrics remind you that just broke up with somebody… Okay, the lyrics don’t relate to pulling a heist, but the melody damn well does.
10. Iggy Pop “Lust For Life” – Yes, this was the heist song in Trainspotting… I didn’t realize that when I first put it on the list, but doesn’t it make sense? It’s quick, energetic, summery and just straight-up rock n’ roll. Isn’t that what robberies are all about anyway?
11. Link Wray “Ace of Spades” – Man, what a smooth way to round out this list. Congratulations, you pulled it off. No one is chasing you anymore, no need to be paranoid. Sit down, have a glass of wine, be confident.
Okay, so you probably aren’t going to be robbing any banks any time soon and these songs won’t really work in a practical setting. But why not play them next time you start a road trip. They inspire confidence and a bit of dark recklessness. You may have to just trust me on them, maybe experiment a little. In any event, enjoy ‘em.