Car accidents are an ideal source of inspiration for musicians because of the sudden change these violent acts can force into lives. Bands and solo artists don’t shy away from the emotional material because listeners everywhere instantly identify with the subject matter. That fact shows up in the success of the best car crash songs. Most of these tracks have sold millions of copies worldwide and sustained whole careers over decades. The best car crash tracks marry the anxious, disoriented blur of accident bangs and skids with contrasting pop sensibilities. Check out the songs in this list, you may even find a few already stored in your music library.
1. Kanye West, “Through the Wire”
Listen: “Through The Wire”
If you think Kanye sounds a little funny over the track of his 2003 debut single, that’s because his jaw is wired shut. West wrote the song about a 2002 car accident that left him badly injured. The rawness of Kanye’s lyrics shows just how close the Chicago hip-hop artist came to death while driving home from a recording studio. The track appears on West’s first album, College Dropout.
2. The Beach Boys, “A Young Man is Gone”
The Beach Boys’ haunting tribute to James Dean appears on the group’s 1963 album, Little Deuce Coupe. The entire group sings vocals on the track, showing each members’ support for the Hollywood star who, “died as he lived.”
3. Eminem, “Stan”
The 2000 Eminem track featuring Dido chronicles the tale of an obsessed fan who careens off the highway with his pregnant girlfriend locked in the trunk. “Stan” is one of Eminem’s most successful songs hitting Number One on multiple charts in several different countries. By 2001, the Recording Industry Association of America certified “Stan” platinum in six different countries.
4. Jan and Dean “Dead Man’s Curve”
“Dead Man’s Curve” carries loose references to the high-speed collision that claimed the life of James Dean. The poppy surf ballad, about an auto racing accident, peaked at Number Eight on Billboard Charts in 1964, just a year after the Beach Boys released a similar track directly relating to Dean.
5. Kiss, “Detroit Rock City”
This 1976 Kiss track is all thumping bass and over-the-top vocals – isn’t that every Kiss song? Paul Stanley and Bob Ezrin famously wrote the song about a fan of the band that died on his way to see them in concert. The single was the band’s last off the Destroyer album cycle. While the single charted poorly, it’s appeared in multiple films and video games since its original release.
6. Rise Against, “The Approaching Curve”
Rise Against’s 2006 album “The Sufferer and the Witness” included this track, a spoken-word style progression through a couple’s breakup. As the song winds to its increasingly anxious ending, frontman Tim Mcllrath speaks, “Up ahead, there was a curve approaching. She made no indications of slowing.”
7. Thrice, “The Artist in the Ambulance”
The track from the mighty Thrice’s 2003 album that bares the same name portrays the dizzying effects of an accident and the rush of first responders to rescue the injured. The band’s major debut peaked at Number 16 on the Billboard Charts and catapulted Thrice onto the national stage.
If you or a loved one sustain injuries in an accident, contacting an NJ car accident lawyeris your first step to defending your rights. An experienced lawyer can advise you of your abilities to pursue responsible parties for damages and keep your insurance company from taking advantage of you while you recuperate. A fair and equitable settlement helps you pay bills, replace lost income and tend to the ongoing care needs of your accident injuries.