19 May 2016

These are ten Cadillac songs we love

A wide variety of cars such as Ford Mustangs, Chevrolet Corvettes and Porsches have inspired musicians over the years, but no vehicle can match the huge imprint left by Cadillac. Countless Caddy songs stretch across all musical genres, including contemporary tunes, but in order to offer a more nostalgic effect, here are my foot-tapping favorites.

Brand New Cadillac” by Vince Taylor, covered by The Clash: Already a swingin’ rockabilly favorite, the raw sonic energy from The Clash gave this hit a bit of modern flare. Both versions have guitar riffs that electrify your nerves.

Best lyrics:
“My baby rolled up in a brand new Cadillac,
Yes, she did!
My baby drove up in a brand new Cadillac,
She said, ‘Hey, come here, Daddy!’
‘I ain't never coming back.’”

Bring My Cadillac Back” by Baker Knight and covered by Imelda May: There are several versions of this song, but Imelda May’s beautiful voice and swingin’ energy with intense saxophone rhythms make this many folks’ favored rendition.

Best lyrics:
“I woke up this mornin' 'bout a quarter to six,
Found myself in a terrible fix.
My baby was gone and the Cadillac too.
Now won't you tell me what I'm gonna do?”

Cadillac Boogie” by Jimmy Liggins: Released in 1948, three years before Ike Turner’s hit “Rocket 88,” this big-band swing mixed with old school rhythm is one performance that had an immense impact on the future of vehicle-inspired tunes.

Best lyrics:
“Air foam cushions on a modern design
V-8 motor, body Fleetwood line
Keep rollin’ jack, makin' time
That cat's purring got eight kitten's cryin'
It's a Cadillac boogie, yes the Cadillac boogie
It's a Cadillac boogie, boogie woogie rolling along”

Cadillac Ranch” by Bruce Springsteen: According to music critic Dave Marsh, this song “made dinosaurs dance” with its exuberant rockabilly influences. The song’s infectious beat made it a favorite on mainstream rock radio stations. Rumor has it that “Cadillac Ranch” refers to a cemetery, and the Cadillac mentioned is actually a hearse.

Best lyrics:
“Eldorado fins, whitewalls and skirts,
Rides just like a little bit of heaven here on earth,
Well buddy when I die throw my body in the back,
And drive me to the junkyard in my Cadillac.”

Heaven is in the Back Seat of My Cadillac” by Hot Chocolate: The title doesn’t hide what the song is about. This ‘70s tune skips the innuendos and gets straight to the point. After all, there isn’t much that can beat the romance of a Cadillac.

Best lyrics:
“Heaven's in the back seat of my Cadillac -
Let me take you there,
yeah yeah.
Heaven's in the back seat of my Cadillac -
Let me take you there,
yeah yeah.”

Look at that Cadillac” by the Stray Cats: They’re a catchy rockabilly band that will keep you rollin’ all night long, and this song is no exception. Go ahead, play it on repeat. I know you want to.

Best lyrics:
“I gotta get a Cadillac.
Look at that Cadillac, look at that.
Look at that Cadillac, look at that,
Rollin’ down the avenue, I’m gunna get my a Cadillac too,
If it’s the last thing I do.”

Maybellene” by Chuck Berry: It was Chuck Berry’s first single release and first big hit in 1955, and it tells the story of a hot rod race and broken romance. A combination of blues and rock’n’roll, the song received numerous awards and has been covered by many artists.

Best lyrics:
“Pink in the mirror on top of the hill,
It's just like swallowin' up a medicine pill.
First thing I saw that Cadillac grille
Doin' a hundred and ten gallopin' over that hill.
Off hill curve, a downhill stretch,
Me and that Cadillac neck by neck.”

One Piece at a Time” by Johnny Cash: It’s a humorous view from a blue-collar factory worker who has the patience of a saint, and vows that someday, he will have a Cadillac even if it means risking his job and piecing the Cadillac together with random parts.

Best lyrics:
“I'd get it one piece at a time,
And it wouldn't cost me a dime.
You'll know it's me when I come through your town,
I'm gonna ride around in style
I'm gonna drive everybody wild
'Cause I'll have the only one there is around.”

Pink Cadillac” by Bruce Springsteen, re-recorded by Natalie Cole: Springsteen had previously vetoed another female vocalist’s version of his song, as he believed it to be gender inappropriate. But once he heard Natalie Cole’s take on the tune, even he was impressed. Cole performed the song flawlessly while adding her inner funk to the soundwaves.

Best lyrics:
“I love you for your pink Cadillac
Crushed velvet seats
Riding in the back, oozing down the street
Waving to the girls
Peeling out of sight
Spending all my money on a Saturday night”

Slick Black Cadillac” by Quiet Riot: From the late-1970s hair band era came an ode to really fast, slick black Cadillacs. It’s a shame that the late singer, Kevin Dubrow, isn’t around to see the new Cadillac CTS-V models. There’s no doubt he would put a set of gold wheels on it and let ’er rip.

Best lyrics:
“Drivin' in a Slick Black Cadillac,
It's got solid gold hubcaps,
It makes me feel like a king,
I only need one thing,
And that's a Slick Black Cadillac.”

28 Reader Comments

  • 1
    David Combs Renton, WA May 19, 2016 at 12:40
    How about "C-A-D-I-L-L-A-C" by Bo Diddley (also covered by The Kinks and others)?
  • 2
    Thomas Long Mansfield Center, CT May 22, 2016 at 18:57
    How could you skip War's "Who's Cadillac is That"? It's a quintessential Caddy Classic!
  • 3
    Ken Sobel Encino, CA May 25, 2016 at 14:15
    How about the "Little Nash Rambler (Beep Beep)????
  • 4
    Chris Grand Rapids, MI May 25, 2016 at 15:17
    One glaring omission from the list: Willie the Wimp & his Cadillac Coffin by Stevie Ray Vaughan
  • 5
    scott exeter N.H. May 25, 2016 at 15:43
    what about Psycho Cadillac by the Psycho DeVilles!
  • 6
    Somer Dixie May 25, 2016 at 16:24
    Jesters in Memphis did Cadillac man. Singer's sons have a band now known as "North Mississippi Allstars" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qeCyMbHYe6Y
  • 7
    Mark DePue Leipsic, OH May 25, 2016 at 16:27
    We can't forget "Voodoo Cadillac," Southern Culture on the Skids.
  • 8
    Rich Edwards The Aridzone May 25, 2016 at 16:57
    Quick, into the time warp: My Pink Cadillac - Hal Willis, Cadillac Baby - Bill Sherrell, Cadillac Assembly Line - Albert King, I Want a Lavender Cadillac - Maurice King and the Wolverines, and Pink Cadillac - Sammy Masters and His Rocking Rhythm, are a few with Cadillac in the title. There are more if one also seeks Cadillac just in the Lyrics......
  • 9
    Ralph OR May 25, 2016 at 17:12
    I fondly remember my '56 Cadillac series 62 Convertible. Cream off white with white over red leather interior and Eldorado engine. My wife and I went on our honeymoon trip on my way to Navy Flight school in 1966.
  • 10
    Jim Lank Los Angeles, CA May 25, 2016 at 17:46
    Actually a Rambler song about whooping a Caddy - Beep Beep by the Playmates
  • 11
    Bob Pohl Peoria IL May 25, 2016 at 18:02
    "Voodoo Cadillac" by Southern Culture on the Skids.
  • 12
    Danny Saucier Washington May 25, 2016 at 18:30
    "Guitars, Cadillacs,,," Dwight Yoakum his first huge hit not mentioned ? Any of those others in the top ten? Man this website needs help.
  • 13
    L. D. Shelton Kau, Big Island, Hawaii May 25, 2016 at 18:36
    You missed a couple great ones. As David Combs mentioned, The Original Kinks in 64, C-A-D-I-L-L-A-C. More modern times there's the ........... Kentucky Head Hunters with "High Steppin Daddy". Enjoy
  • 14
    Chuck Spransy Cascade, WI May 25, 2016 at 18:39
    Remember the song "Beep Beep"? The Cadillac gets beaten by a Nash Rambler American. Total fun because at 120 MPH the guy in the Rambler shouts to the Caddy driver, "Hey buddy, how do you get this car.... out of second gear?"
  • 15
    Gary Walla Tacoma, WA May 25, 2016 at 20:23
    I agree with Thomas Long. War's "Who's Cadillac is That?" should be on this list.
  • 16
    JT Whipple Hailey, Idaho May 25, 2016 at 20:40
    " I want my Fleetwood Back" Tony Joe White
  • 17
    Rusty A. San Rafael, CA May 25, 2016 at 21:03
    If you are a fan of Rockabilly music, the background group on a motorcycle restoration program was the "Psycho DeVilles" and one of their songs and name of one of their album titles is "Psycho Cadillac". The basis of almost all of their songs is car oriented.
  • 18
    John Kranyics Mountsberg Ontario May 25, 2016 at 21:53
    What about Cadillac Baby by Colin James?
  • 19
    Stephen Uluhaktok May 25, 2016 at 22:32
    Jet Black Cadillac by the Stereos is worth a listen.
  • 20
    Ed Davis Guilford Ct. May 26, 2016 at 02:27
    How about "Little Nash Rambler", I think by the Kingston Trio? The song is about a Caddy racing a Nash Rambler that is stuck in 2 nd gear.
  • 21
    B Couture Maine State of May 26, 2016 at 16:42
    Stevie Ray Vaughan-----Willie the Wimp....
  • 22
    Dave Billus Watertown,CT May 26, 2016 at 20:20
    The lyrics given for Chuck Berry's Maybellene are incorrect.
  • 23
    Mike B Illinois May 26, 2016 at 08:20
    Unless I've lost my mind, the gold Caddie at the top of the page is a '56 not a '55. The split vertical bar at the front of the rear fender is the first clue. The '55 had a full height vertical bar with chrome trim. :)
  • 24
    Bruce McKeon Thomasville,NC May 26, 2016 at 11:55
    What about "Two Black Cadillac's" by Carrie Underwood?
  • 25
    Greg Harris Cumming, GA May 26, 2016 at 12:44
    Cadillac Blues by The Music City Horns featuring Johnnie Bassett (2009) is a must for this list and anyone who owns a 59' Caddy. download and enjoy :)
  • 26
    Dave New Mexico May 27, 2016 at 09:41
    Guitars, Cadillacs and Hillbilly Music, Long White Cadillac (Dwight Yoakam)
  • 27
    Bert NC May 31, 2016 at 16:03
    No ZZ Top??....and they built Cadzilla!
  • 28
    John D Binghamton, NY June 15, 2016 at 09:59
    Mike B. The Caddy is a '55. The exhaust ports on a '56 are oval. 1956 was my favorite year Cadillac. We had one.

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