Even if you have a rousing playlist queued up to score your two-wheeled adventures this autumn, you might also fancy an explicitly bike-related song or two. The selection below spans decades, genres, and languages. You’re no doubt familiar with some of the tracks, but there are some deep cuts too. Enjoy!
Song #1, Bicycle Race, Queen (1978)
(1978) Perhaps the bicycle song that springs most readily to mind, Queen’s “Bicycle Race” forcefully articulates the hankering many a cyclist has to simply get out and ride without restriction: I want to ride my bicycle | I want to ride my bike | I want to ride my bicycle | I want to ride it where I like
Song #2, Tour de France, Kraftwerk (1983)
(1983) Layering vocal panting and mechanical sounds (think chain noises) over a relentless techno beat, German electronic band Kraftwerk’s “Tour de France” underscores the tolerance for pain and repetition required to contest cycling’s premiere stage race.
Song #3, Mein Fahrrad (My Bike), Die Prinzen (1991)
(1991) Do you feel an inexplicably deep connection with your bike? Have you been known to gloat as you cruise past sports cars stuck in traffic? Then “Mein Fahrrad” (“My Bike”) from German vocal group Die Prinzen is for you: Jeder Spinner fährt ’nen Manta | Jeder Dödel Jaguar | Nur Genießer fahren Fahrrad | Und sind immer schneller da (Every nutter drives a Manta | Every fool a Jaguar | Only connoisseurs ride a bike | And always arrive more quickly)
Song #4, The Bicycle Song, David Rovics (1996)
(1996) According to “The Bicycle Song” by indie singer-songwriter David Rovics, there’s hardly an ill that riding a bicycle can’t alleviate: Everybody’s wondering what they’re gonna do | Everything’s a mess and folks are feeling blue | If your troubles get you down so much you can’t abide | Get on that bicycle and ride
Song #5, Belleville Rendez-vous, music by Benoît Charest and lyrics by Sylvain Chomet, (2003)
(2003) If you’ve seen the animated film The Triplets of Belleville, the Oscar-nominated (Best Original Song) tune “Belleville Rendez-vous” will inevitably conjure mental images of meaty-calved Champion churning out the miles...
Song #6, Motherf**king Bike, Sons of Science (2012)
(2012) Sons of Science’s “Motherf**king Bike” (yes, it’s profane) touches on everything about cyclists that rubs non-cyclists the wrong way: the self-righteousness, the hipster aesthetic, the chutzpah with which we take the lane. The transportation shows I care | Every turn of the pedal cleans the air
Song #7, La Bicicleta, Carlos Vives and Shakira (2016)
(2016) A catchy, Latin Grammy-winning collaboration between Colombian singers Carlos Vives and Shakira, “La Bicicleta” (“The Bike”) will have you dancing in your saddle: A tu manera, descomplicado en una bici que te lleve a todos lados (Your way, uncomplicated on a bike that will take you everywhere)
Song #8, To the Guy Who Stole My Bike, The Dirty Nil (2021
(2021) From Canadian alternative rock band The Dirty Nil comes “To the Guy Who Stole My Bike”: To the guy who stole my bike | I hope it serves you well | I hope the brakes don’t seize | When you’re riding down the hill to hell
Now before you—to quote another Queen song—get on your bikes and ride, dear readers, heads abuzz with songs of cycling, take precautions against a guy (or gal) stealing your trusty steed. Ride more and worry less with one of Altor’s industry-leading locks.