Tag Archives: country music

Grilling Music – chicked-fried disco powerpack o’ my heart

73 degrees, little humidity, gin & tonic, burgers on the grill, start* of a four day weekend….what could be better?

Of course, grilling requires music and I noticed over the last few weeks that more and more country has seeped into my iPod “Grilling 2011” playlist:

“What I Like About Texas,” Jerry Jeff Walker, and “Southern Voice,” Tim McGraw. I honestly don’t get most of the references in Jerry Jeff Walker’s song (McGraw’s are all well-known enough for the kids to understand), but both songs make me think about Lone Star beer, which may be the best Hot Day Summer Beer.

“This is Country Music” and “Old Alabama,” Brad Paisley. These are the kind of songs that separates country from all other music genres. Yes, its possible to have hip hop songs that sample from and make explicit reference to other rap/hip hop songs (as well as the rest of the musical universe, which makes rap unique), and bringing others onstage or in the studio is as old as stages and studios, but only a country song could do what these songs do. Plus they sound cool…

“Summertime” and “I Go Back,” Kenny Chesney. Thanks to Eric Shimp for introducing me to Kenny. The kids know all the words and don’t complain when these songs come on, which is good. (and the “Only the Good Die Young” part of “I Go Back” resonates, I am not even sure why)

“Chicken Fried,” Zac Brown Band. Thanks to Mrs. Shimp for bringing this one into our house, but the song became a rallying cry over the summer when Eric Lapham professed a hatred for country music, requiring us to play “cold beer on a Friday night” as loud as possible whenever he was around.

But while country is perfect for grilling, as one of the former hosts of the Morning Chafe Show on WLUR, Lexington, Virginia’s finest college radio station, I can’t have just one genre as the soundtrack to sausages and corn or ribs or steak tips. Full list below, but some recent additions that always stand out when I am standing at the grill:

“The Payback,” James Brown. “I don’t know karate, but I know ka-razy.” And since this song is almost 8 minutes long, it serves as a good timer for turkey burgers or corn.

“The Fire,” The Roots and John Legend. If Tom Petty recorded hip hop in the 2010s, this is what he would sound like. The same understated depth and resolve. Good stuff.

“Nonstop Disco Powerpack,” Beastie Boys. Yes, I actually downloaded this after hearing the Beastie interviewed by Terry Gross on “Fresh Air.” That makes me old. And nebbishy. But the song is great.

“Stay Free,” The Clash. If you know the song, you just heard the opening chords in your head and started singing, “we met when we were in school…”

“Raised on Black & Tans,” Gaelic Storm, and “Peg o’My Heart,” Dropkick Murphys. You have to have some jump around Irish music. And the Black & Tans song includes a few great lines for anyone with an Irish heritage. “My mother’s, brother’s, sister’s, cousin’s, auntie’s,
Uncle Barney’s, father’s, brother had a cousin from Killarney.”

“Friday I’m in Love,” The Cure. Loudest band ever and somehow a song that sounds really good when you’re outside grilling.

suggestions welcome for what I’m missing. And, yes, Steve Perry, Hanson, Paula Abdul, Miley Cyrus, Guns & Roses, Aerosmith, Bela Fleck, Delbert McClinton, Led Zeppelin, U2, and all the other usual folks are there, too…..

*no, can’t start yet, have to get one kid to a play date, another to a birthday party, and the third to a baseball game…and get in some work…but already thinking ahead to 7:30pm when I can fire up the grill….

Your Time Is Gonna Come Led Zeppelin
You Are The Everything R.E.M.
With Or Without You U2
While My Guitar Gently Weeps The Beatles
What I Like About Texas Jerry Jeff Walker
Waterfalls TLC
Walk On U2
Wake Me Up When September Ends Green Day
Unbelieveable EMF
Thorn In My Pride The Black Crowes
This Is Country Music Brad Paisley
The Payback James Brown
The Leaning Tower Béla Fleck & The Flecktones
The Golden Age The Asteroids Galaxy Tour
The Fire The Roots & John Legend
Sweet Thing Keith Urban
Sweet Caroline Neil Diamond
Summertime Kenny Chesney
Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again Bob Dylan
Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of (Acoustic) U2
Straight Up Paula Abdul
Stay Free The Clash
Spanish Bombs The Clash
Southern Voice Tim McGraw
Southern Rain Cowboy Junkies
Something More Sugarland
She Talks To Angels (Acoustic) Black Crowes
Shaky Ground Delbert McClinton
Same Old Song And Dance Aerosmith
Running To Stand Still U2
Runnin’ With The Devil Van Halen
Run-Around Blues Traveler
Rudie Can’t Fail The Clash
Ripple Jane’s Addiction
Redemption Song Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros
Raised On Black and Tans Gaelic Storm
Rain Street The Pogues
Radioactive The Firm
Preachin’, Prayin’, Singin’ Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs & The Foggy Mountain Boys
Penguins Lyle Lovett
Peg O’ My Heart Dropkick Murphys
Peace of Mind Boston
Pass The Mic Beastie Boys
Party In the U.S.A. Miley Cyrus
Paradise City Guns N’ Roses
Only In America Brooks & Dunn
Old Alabama (feat. Alabama) Brad Paisley
Oh Sherrie Steve Perry
Nonstop Disco Powerpack Beastie Boys
Nobody Knows Me Lyle Lovett
New Year’s Day U2
Never Tear Us Apart InXS
Mountain Music Alabama
MMMBop Hanson
Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to be Cowboys Willie Nelson
Long Hard Times to Come (From “Justified”) [feat. T.O.N.E-Z] Gangstagrass
Let the Good Times Roll Buckwheat Zydeco
Kings And Queens Aerosmith
Just Like Heaven (acoustic) The Cure
Joe Strummer Cowboy Mouth
Jimmy Olsen’s Blues Spin Doctors
Jambalaya New Orleans’ Own The Dukes of Dixieland
It’s a Great Day to Be Alive Travis Tritt
In God’s Country U2
I’m Over You The Silos
I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) The Proclaimers
Ill Fated Golden Smog
Ice Ice Baby Vanilla Ice
I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For U2
I Go Back Kenny Chesney
Home Is Where the Heart Is Lady Antebellum
Hillbilly Bone (feat. Trace Adkins) Blake Shelton
Hard Times Ryan Bingham
Givin’ It Up for Your Love Delbert McClinton
Georgia On My Mind Willie Nelson
Friday I’m In Love The Cure
Forever Young Audra Mae & The Forest Rangers
Fool In the Rain Led Zeppelin
Flyswatter/Ice Water Blues Lyle Lovett
Firework Katy Perry
Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven (With The Wailers) Kenny Chesney
Empire State of Mind (feat. Alicia Keys) Jay-Z
Elias Dispatch
Dream Like New York Tyrone Wells
Chicken Fried Zac Brown Band
California Gurls (feat. Snoop Dogg) Katy Perry
Boom Boom Pow The Black Eyed Peas
Beer for My Horses Toby Keith & Willie Nelson
Ball and Chain Social Distortion
Backwoods Rose Ekoostik Hookah
Baba O’Riley (Live) Dropkick Murphys
A Little More Country Than That Easton Corbin
(I Just) Died in Your Arms Cutting Crew