Playlist: Seven Songs About Trains

[column size=one_half position=first ]trainIt’s silly to pick seven songs about trains. There are thousands of great ones.

Suffice it to say that any list of songs about trains includes lots of blues and the accompanying lonesome whistles. I’d like to listen to them all. Indeed, it’s interesting that something that holds such fascination for kids (especially boys) so often ends up being associated with sadness.

Nothing is more evocative than trains. The image of people slicing through the dark night in brightly lit parlor cars, hurtling through the lives of unknown people asleep in their beds, is highly romantic. Perhaps it creates the mood and atmosphere that leads those predisposed to the blues — which probably covers a lot of song writers — to get them. Or something like that.

This post features seven great trains songs — and here are hundreds of others.

[Editor’s Note: I initially credited Amy Winehouse with the rendition of “Blues in the Night” in the playlist. I have been told a site visitor–see the comments–that it actually is Katie Melua. Sorry for the mistake, which has been corrected. Look for a post on Melua next week. She’s great.]

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  1. Choo Choo Ch'Boogie Louis Jordan (Vaughn Horton, Denver Darling, Milt Gable) 2:42
  2. Casey Jones The Grateful Dead (Jerry Garcia, Robert Hunter) 5:00
  3. Blues in the Night Katie Melua (Harold Arlen/Johnny Mercer) 4:13
  4. Wabash Cannonball Roy Acuff (Traditional) 2:37
  5. City of New Orleans Arlo Guthrie (Steve Goodman) 4:16
  6. Take the A Train Duke Ellington (Billy Strayhorn) 3:14
  7. I've Been Working On The Railroad The Rooftop Singers (Traditional) 2:19


  • Jim Cutler

    Hi Carl,
    Love the daily updates. Really like the train songs. Just a heads up. The Blues In The Night attributed to Amy Winehouse is not Amy Winehouse. It’s Katie Melua. Love Katie Melua she’s got an awesome voice but very different than Amy Winehouse.

    Thanks for your work here. Keep it up.

  • Carl

    Hi Jim. Thanks for the compliment. Holy smokes! I will correct that…and do a post on Melua. That is a really great version of that song. Thanks for the heads-up.

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