Thursday, 10 May 2018

My Top Ten Airport Songs

Sorry - no time to chat, got a plane to catch. Here's ten songs about airports...

Special mentions to Idlewild and Airport Girl.

10. Baader Meinhof - Meet Me At The Airport

Probably best not to bump into Luke Haines at an airport. Not if he's got his terrorist mates with him...
I met a man, he was a trader
And he did a cargo at 10,000
Over Jordan
It's not for Gods love
It's not for cocaine
When you've decided - Meet me at the airport
9. REM - Airportman

Is Up the last great REM album... or just the one where they try too hard to sound like Radiohead?

8. Loney Dear - Airport Surroundings

Something about him breaking into an airport on his bike and getting caught on the runway in the lights of an oncoming plane... don't ask me. It's got a nice beat and you could dad-dance to it.

7. Bobby Bare - Chicago Story

If you don't want your tears jerking, give this one a miss...

...and certainly don't stick around for the last line, because it's a killer.

6. Sondre Lerche - Airport Taxi Reception

Classic Norwegian indie.

'Cause I left my mind in the airport,
My thoughts in a taxi,
My heart in reception,
The last thing I saw was you

5. Gordon Lightfoot - Early Morning Rain

Gordon gets stuck on the runway awaiting take-off. Now there's a metaphor for you!

This old airport's got me down
It's no earthly good to me
And I'm stuck here on the ground
As cold and drunk as I can be
You can't jump a jet plane
Like you can a freight train
So I best be on my way
In the early mornin' rain

4. The Handsome Family - All The Time In Airports

A tale of unrequited love between frequent flyers...

I see you flipping through the pages
Of books by millionaires
Who found that Jesus Christ could guide them
Into tripling their sales

Late at night in airports
The cages pulled across the stores
And early in the morning when
They drive the waxer across the floor

I see you sitting on your suitcase
I see you sleeping in a chair
But each time I get too close
You always disappear

I see you all the time in airports
Just a hundred feet away
3. The Supremes - 5.30 Plane

The Supremes + Jimmy Webb = a match made in heaven.

In Rol's alternate reality, this was Number One on both sides of the Atlantic for six weeks.

2. The Motors - Airport

As I've said many times before: if you're going to write a one-hit wonder... make it a belter!

And it would / should have been Number One... if not for this...

1. John Denver - Leaving On A Jet Plane

Of course, the tragic irony of this song is unbearable... but if you can get past John Denver's untimely demise, this is surely one of the greatest sad pop songs ever written. A hit for Peter, Paul & Mary... though their version sounds really odd if you're more familiar with Denver's (as I am).

Such a great tune that, as JC recently reported, even New Order tried to rip it off.

Sam loves this song too. I have taught him well.

Actually, Denver recorded this twice. I much prefer the version below to the alternative take. You may choose to differ.

Any leftover airport songs going round and round on your baggage carousel? Do tell...


  1. Brilliant to see Loney Dear make the cut. I can offer 'Same Airport, Different Man' by Julia Jackson, 'Behind the Airport Mirror' by The Low Anthem and of course anything from 'Music for Airports' by Brian Eno.

  2. Keith & Mick's "No Expectations" has a poignant final few lines (and some nifty slide from Brian Jones):

    "So take me to the airport
    And put me on a plane
    I got no expectations
    To pass through here again"

  3. Going to give a little shout out for Nick Lowe’s holiday song Christmas at the Airport. Pleased to see you mention Airport Girl.

  4. All my Airport songs already in here. I am actually more familiar with the Peter Paul and Mary version of Leaving On A Jet Plane and it was the first song I managed to crack when I bought my guitar and went for some lessons. It was also the last song I managed to crack!


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