If you ask Soul Town DJ Fred Buggs about taking a road trip, he’ll light up a room with personal anecdotes from the latter part of the 20th century. In fact, Buggs spent much of those years on the road: “I used to work weekends in Washington in the ’70s. Then, In the ’80s I was working in Philadelphia and living in New York, so listening to the radio on my commute was always very personal for me. The radio station never leaves you.”

Indeed, Buggs has always got radio on the mind, which is why he’s the perfect man to build a Soul Town road trip playlist. Curated to take you from Memphis to St. Louis (two soulful cities, according to Buggs), the playlist features everything from the Jackson 5 to Soul Survivors to Otis Redding to The Isley Brothers.

When asked what makes a great road trip song, Bugg elaborates: “It’s got a steady bounce, a steady groove. When you look at songs like Jr. Walker’s Road Runner and Soul Survivors’ Expressway to Your Heart, it’s pretty self explanatory. But when you look at James Brown’s I Feel Good, demographically, for those people who were moving around in the ’60s and ’70s, those are some real sing-along songs.”

And what’s Buggs’ favorite part about road trips? “Enjoying the different scenery,” says Buggs. “For every area, every city has a smell and a vibe, depending upon what’s growing there. [Taking a road trip] makes you feel renewed. Whenever you leave home, it’s a renewed feeling, you stop and you’re eating different food and taking in different cultures.”

Finally, Buggs brought up an excellent point about what cars meant to folks who lived through the height of the Motown era: “You gotta go back to the ’60s and the ’70s when the car was VERY important. Before the Internet, before cell phones, our toys were the cars. The greatest thing was to be on the road with the radio and to look at the scenery.”

Check out Soul Town’s Memphis -> St. Louis playlist below.

1. Jackson 5 – The Love You Save
2. Jr. Walker – Road Runner
3. Soul Survivors – Expressway To Your Heart
4. Sly Stone – Hot Fun In The Summer Time
5. Kool & The Gang – Hollywood swinging
6. James Brown – I Feel Good
7. Wilson Pickett – Land of 1000 Dances
8. The Isley Brothers – Love The One Your With
9. Jean Knight – Mr. Big stuff
10. Martha & The Vandellas – Nowhere To Run
11. Otis Redding – Satisfaction
12. Stevie – Superstition
13. Archie Bell – Tighten Up
14. Aretha Franklin – Respect
15. Booker T. & MG’s – Green Onions
16. Edwin Starr – War
17. Gladys Knight – I Heard It Through The Grapevine
18. Sam & Dave – Hold On I’m Coming
19. Smokey & The Miracles – Going To A Go Go
20. Temptations – Ain’t Too Proud To Beg
21. 5th Dimension – Stone Soul Picnic
22. Four Tops Baby – I Need Your Lovin’
23. The Isley Brothers – This Old Heart Of Mine
24. O’Jays – Love Train
25. Supremes – You Can’t Hurry Love
26. Billy Preston – Will It Go Round In Circles
27. Kool & The Gang – Funky Stuff
28. Martha & The Vandellas – Dancin’ In The Street
29. Al Green – Let’s Stay Together
30. Temptations – My Girl

St. Louis, MO –> Chicago, IL


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