Passing Lane: Parodies and Other Funny Songs
C.W. McCall’s “Convoy” has been covered by other singers, including Red Sovine and Boxcar Willie, and “funny trucker songs” have around for years. But parodies of C.W. McCall songs are a specialty.
- Convoy G.B.
- “Convoy G.B.” was the first known parody of a C.W. McCall song. It was written and performed by Laurie Lingo and the Dipsticks, a duo who were actually BBC Radio 1 DJs Dave Lee Travis and Paul Burnett. “G.B."” is an abbreviation for "Great Britain".
- Car Phone
- Sheeler and Sheeler’s “Car Phone” appeared in 1980. Another parody of “Convoy”, this song tells of one motorist’s obsession with his car phone. While cellular phones are ubiquitous these days, in 1980 the car phone was relatively new (and expensive!).
- Convoy 2000
- “Convoy 2000” isn't a parody, but an homage to the original “Convoy”. This is the story of a road trip that a few vacation-challenged individuals made in June 2000. It was written by Alan “Skywalker” Chafin, one of the participants in that trip.
- Great Big Rollin’ Railroad
Bill Fries, pre-C.W. McCall, wrote this song in 1970 as a presentation to Union Pacific, with whom Bozell & Jacobs was campaign for an advertising account.
- Iraqi Convoy
- Ray Grossman, a National Guardman stationed in Iraqi during June 2004, sent to us this view of driving ’cross the desert sands.
And now for the “funny trucker songs”:
- C.B. Savage
- The subject of this politically-incorrect song is “alternative lifestyles”, and the confusion which they bring to the less-sophisticated.
- Truck Drivin’ Song
- Somewhat in the spirit of “C.B. Savage” is “Weird Al” Yankovic’s contribution, about a trucker with a sense of fashion. Think of “The Lumberjack Song” by Monty Python, but with a Dave Dudley “Six Days On The Road” rythmn.
- 30,000 Pounds Of Bananas
- Harry Chapin, who is probably best known for his other transportation-related song, “Taxi”, wrote this “Wolf Creek Pass.-like adventure of terror.
- Corky and the Juice Pigs (“The Only Gay Eskimo”) wrote this song, a satire of the trucker’s life. From their debut album Corky and the Juice Pigs, which is (fortunately?) out-of-print.
There are — so far — two songs by C.W. McCall that do not appear on any album. The first, “Kidnap America”, is a protest song in the style of “There Won’t Be No Country Music (There Won’t Be No Rock ’N’ Roll)”. The second song is “Pine Tar Wars”, a response to the George Brett “pine tar” incident of 1983 in which baseball manager Billy Martin and the officiating umpires are roundly ridiculed for a bad call.