10 perfect songs for a spring break road trip


Khalil Bourgoub

A collection of albums featured in a playlist for a spring break road trip Khalil Bourgoub put together, showing, clockwise from top left, “Malibu” by Anderson .Paak, “Ultra Ego” by Feed Me Jack, “In Rainbows” by Radiohead and “Random Access Memories” by Daft Punk.

Khalil Bourgoub

With the first half of yet another online semester coming to an end, we need music for the head bobbers and car dancers like me to get down to during a long spring break road trip. I wanted to drop a playlist that people could listen to while taking a long drive to a destination much needed away from their computer screens or workplaces, with each song picked from an album that is fun from start to finish.

‘It Gets Funkier II’ – Vulfpeck 


This first song, “It Gets Funkier 2” by American funk band Vulfpeck, truthfully, has no business going this hard. When I found this band sometime in 2014, I had no idea people were even still making music this funky, I could not believe they were currently making music like this in a modern setting. The music is so fun to listen to, surprisingly complex for the music nerds like myself and feels impossible to sit still in your seat while you’re listening, a perfect combination to start a long drive to. 

‘Come Down’ – Anderson .Paak



It really can’t be a surprise to anyone that I’m putting an Anderson .Paak song in the playlist; I was extremely happy for his recent Grammy Award and this track is a perfect spring break theme song. ‘Come Down’ continues the funky tracklist with some hip-hop influences with some of the most audibly infectious drum and bass playing. Another .Paak song, another banger. 

‘Lose Yourself To Dance’ – Daft Punk (feat. Pharrell Williams)


Taking a detour into some more electronic-influenced dance music, I included this Daft Punk song to commemorate their cryptic breakup announcement. While sad they are taking a break from making music, is anyone else upset we never figured out which one was Mr. Daft or which one was Mr. Punk? Or, who decided to call it quits? Can we expect music from Daft or Punk alone in the future? Anyways, “Random Access Memories” is a great album and this song featuring the King Midas of music, Pharrell Williams, will let us slow it down and remember the awesome music the French duo put out over the years. 

‘Mercy’ – Duffy


“Mercy” by Duffy was one of my more selfish includes in this playlist because this was an album my mom loved to play in the car on long car trips, and what is a road trip without a little nostalgia? Duffy was one of the late 2000s singers from the United Kingdom that championed the reinvention of that vintage singer sound alongside names like Amy Winehouse and others.

‘Jigsaw Falling Into Place’ – Radiohead


Keeping it in the 2000s, I put ‘Jigsaw Falling Into Place’ by Radiohead to switch up the vibe of the drive. One of the quintessential rock bands of our modern era, Radiohead gives us some deep and moody songs to help us wind down from the excitement of the beginning of the drive. Maybe you’re surrounded by trees while this plays, or somewhere along the coastline, somewhere relaxing. A pretty song reserved for some of the more scenic views in the car. 

‘Emergency’ – Feed Me Jack 



To help transition to a lighter mood, I incorporated one of my favorite local bands, Feed Me Jack, from Oakland. Unfortunately, you and I both probably share the same fate of finding out this band broke up before we knew it existed, so the thought of catching them at a cool little local venue is sadly out of the question, but they still have three small albums up on Spotify, which are all as fantastic as the last. “Emergency” is a slow-starting but rhythmically bouncy track that should help bring back some energy during your cruise. 

‘Company’ – Caddywhompus 


I can’t really hide how noisy this song is with a clever introduction to the song; it starts out fast and ends with the purr of tube amplifiers. “Company” by noise pop band Caddywhompus holds one of my votes for the most underrated rock bands to be making music still, especially with how bad most rock music is nowadays. I really enjoy how they stray away from the copy and paste formula of blues guitar riffs over a boring standard drum beat that has been popular since the White Stripes inception… like 20 years ago! Don’t get me wrong, I do love the White Stripes but I’m ready to move on, and this sound is more promising than another Coldplay album. 

‘Hard Times’ – Paramore 



“Hard Times” by Paramore is somewhat of a 2020 anthem for me, where I’d listen to it on the way to work in the morning to fight the existential dread of being an essential worker during a pandemic, so I felt like it was fitting for this playlist because the whole album fits that bill for me as well. Paramore went from being scene icons in the mid 2000s to making an ‘80s revival album in 2017, and I am not complaining because I am very much here for both phases of the band’s lifespan. 

‘Tryna Smoke’ – Jhene Aiko 



With the time in the car hopefully winding down, putting on some Jhene Aiko always feels right. I feel like “Tryna Smoke” is a song that fits everyone’s spring break agenda to some extent, whether it be literally or figuratively. The album “Chilombo” has probably been featured on a lot of people’s playlists after coming out last year, but I’d insert this specific song in here because the vibe is right, which is exactly what her music has always done for me. 

‘Costa Rica’ – Dreamville, Bas, JID, Guapdad 4000, Reese LAFLARE, Jace, Mez, Smokepurpp, Buddy, Ski Mask The Slump God


To bring the drive and the playlist to an end, I thought we could end on a high note with ‘Costa Rica’ from the Dreamville album “Revenge Of The Dreamers III.” Dreamville is a record label that releases collaborative albums with all of its artists with spots for features the signed artists are interested in working with; this track is for the squad by a squad. Wrapping up the list with a song to put some energy back into the car is vital because even though the journey is supposed to be worth more than the destination, who says we can’t be excited to get there finally? This song is the end of the album and really feels like the end of a journey as well, after experiencing a whole spectrum of emotions, the album ends with everyone turning up, something I wanted this playlist to end with as well.