1. The Dodos – “Fools”
Pulsating percussion to push you along your long and winding road.
2. Gene Clark – “No Other”
Gene Clark’s soothing voice paired with majestic female background vocals make this 1974 song a fall essential.
3. Nick Drake – “‘Cello Song”
Overlapping acoustic guitar and a beautiful low legato cello sound. A great introduction song to Nick Drake if you are unfamiliar with his work.
4. Oscar Peterson – “September In The Rain”
This jazz piano number will make you feel like you’re walking around Central Park in a Nora Ephron romantic comedy.
5. The Radio Dept – “This Time Around”
The drums in this song are the perfect road trip companion.
6. John Lennon – “Hold On”
With a soothing guitar sound that could put you to sleep, this short John Lennon love song feels like a warm blanket. (Bonus points if you notice the cookie monster impression at 1:06.)
7. Kanye West – “Heard ‘Em Say”
It makes sense that a Kanye West song on an autumn-themed playlist would come from his most orchestral album.
8. The Five Stairsteps – “Ooh Child”
What’s a road trip without a great sing-a-long song? This one takes the cake.
9. America – “Ventura Highway”
You may recognize the famous opening guitar riff in this song. And now it will be famous for being on your autumn road trip playlist.
10. SOHN – “The Wheel”
This song opens with some funky dissonant chords then layers on some clapping and a low bass sound. It’s an odd cocktail of sound but together it makes a great song.
11. Alexi Murdoch – “Dream About Flying”
A song that sounds like something a wise old man on a porch would sing.
12. Animal Collective – “Sweet Road”
Animal Collective’s cutest and quickest song. It’s the delightful cherry on top of your autumn playlist.