|Pickup trucks, rain, and Merle Haggard Drive.|
Right now, I'm finishing up my first draft for a sequel to Cowboy Valentine, a novella starring Dean MacKinnon. Dean, the oldest MacKinnon brother, is a professional bullfighter on hiatus from the circuit. He plays an important role in Decker and Andie's short story, Cowboy Overload, but I thought it was high time he got a love story and a happy ending of his own.
It's been fun to mess with Dean. He's a man of few words, much different from the affable, extroverted heroes I think I tend to write. Dean is a Clint Eastwood character with a great big broken heart. A cowboy Lord Byron.
To help me tell Dean's story, Mr. H and I took a road trip from L.A. to the Clovis Rodeo last weekend. The trip took about four hours one way up Highway 99. We listened to some really great country music on 92.3 The Wolf on Sacramento and a couple of local stations in Bakersfield. In light of all that great new and old country, I've prepared a list of 16 awesome country songs perfect for a road trip. It's about an hour of music.
I've Been Everywhere, Johnny Cash
On the Road Again, Willie Nelson
The Gambler, Kenny Rogers
Cash on the Barrelhead, Dolly Parton
Suds in the Bucket, Sara Evans
Red Dirt Road, Brooks & Dunn
Take Me Home, Country Roads, John Denver
Little Red Wagon, Miranda Lambert
I Got a Car, George Strait
Wagon Wheel, Darius Rucker
King of the Road, Roger Miller
Free and Easy, Dierks Bentley
Leaving Louisiana in the Broad Daylight, Emmylou Harris
The Ride, David Allan Coe
Copperhead Road, Steve Earle
A Thousand Miles from Nowhere, Dwight Yoakam
Pancho and Lefty, Merle Haggard & Willie Nelson
P.P.S. You can listen to my road trip playlist on Spotify, if you've got the app.