Five for the Road: Oklahoma

Geoff’s Oklahoma Music Playlist

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We cover serious ground in Edge of America, with our caravan sometimes rolling for 3-, 4-, or even 7-hour trips across a state. And if you’re going to be in a car that long, you need tunes. I try to craft thematic playlists for each of our episodes taking into account the place we’re in, the feel of the episode and, to avoid being a complete music Nazi, consideration for who is going to be riding in my car. Here are a handful of songs we played as Team Edge rolled from town to town.

“Okie From Muskogee,” Merle Haggard
I put this on the iPod and then, while in Tulsa, we learned Merle was playing a gig in town. We asked for an interview. He declined. He had a poker game.

“Ain’t Takin’ ‘Bout Love,” Van Halen
Early on, we talked about maybe using Diamond Dave’s mid-song rumination -- “I been to the edge, an' there I stood an' looked down” -- for a section of our show. Then somebody remembered a little thing called licensing fees.

“Oklahoma, U.S.A.,” The Kinks
Is there another writer capable of creating pop music with such a cinematic bent? Ray Davies imagines a working class girl who dreams of escaping her hum-drum world through a role in Oklahoma!

Egg Man,” Beastie Boys
When you’re bonding on long drives, there’s nothing that brings a bunch of 40-year-olds together like a track off Paul’s Boutique. Check.

“Race for the Prize,” Flaming Lips
Wayne Coyne was cool enough to hang with us and let us into his art gallery. What was funnier was meeting him downtown, where he struggled to find a parking spot in Flaming Lips Alley.