Free Ride (song)

"Free Ride" is a song written by Dan Hartman and performed by The Edgar Winter Group. The single, engineered by Jim Reeves, was a top 15 U.S. hit in 1973, hitting number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100[1] and number 10 on Cash Box. In Canada, it peaked at number eight.[2]

"Free Ride"
Free Ride Edgar Winter.jpg
Single by Edgar Winter Group
from the album They Only Come Out at Night
B-side"When It Comes"
ReleasedAugust 1973
GenreBoogie rock, blues rock
Length3:08 (album/single version)
3:24 (full version)
Songwriter(s)Dan Hartman
Producer(s)Rick Derringer
Edgar Winter Group singles chronology
"Free Ride"
"Hangin' Around"
"Free Ride"
Free Ride - Tavares.jpg
Single by Tavares
from the album In the City
B-side"In the Eyes of Love"
ReleasedDecember 1975
Songwriter(s)Dan Hartman
Producer(s)Dennis Lambert, Brian Potter
Tavares singles chronology
"It Only Takes a Minute"
"Free Ride"
"The Love I Never Had"
"Free Ride"
Single by Dan Hartman
from the album Relight My Fire
B-side"Love Strong"
LabelBlue Sky
Songwriter(s)Dan Hartman
Producer(s)Dan Hartman
Dan Hartman singles chronology
"Hands Down" "Free Ride"
"Boogie All Summer""

The single 45 version is distinctly different from the LP version. The 45 version contains a significantly brighter guitar track (that opens the song only on the left channel), added harmonics, a fuzz bass added to the bridge and other changes that contrast sharply with the "dry" LP mix. Most classic rock radio stations play the LP version, and the original 45 mix is much less commonly available online. Both versions clock in at virtually the same length because each was based on the same core "take" and re-mixed with different tracks to the fore as well as added enhancements to the single.


Other versionsEdit

Tavares recorded a version of the song for their 1975 album, In the City. Their version would peak at #52 on the Billboard Hot 100[3] and #8 on the Hot Soul Singles chart.

Audio Adrenaline recorded a version of the song for their 1996 album, Bloom.

Hartman himself re-recorded the song and released it on his 1979 album Relight My Fire.


In popular cultureEdit

The song was featured in Air America and in The Drew Carey Show episode "The Dog and Pony Show".[11] The song is featured in the 1993 film, Dazed and Confused while Hartman's recording appeared in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie and on its soundtrack album.[12] The song is on Rock Band 3 as downloadable content along with "Frankenstein".[13]


  1. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  2. ^ a b "RPM100 Singles". RPM. Ottawa: Library and Archives Canada. 34 (2). October 20, 1973. Retrieved November 8, 2015.
  3. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  4. ^ "The Edgar Winter Group Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved November 8, 2015.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-06-09. Retrieved 2016-12-29.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955–1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  7. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 Singles, January 10, 1976". Archived from the original on October 18, 2018. Retrieved March 10, 2019.
  8. ^
  9. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1999). Pop Annual. Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc. ISBN 0-89820-142-X.
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-15. Retrieved 2016-12-29.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  11. ^ Archerd, Army (October 16, 1997). "Hello, 'Monty': Drew drops drawers". Variety. Retrieved January 19, 2014.
  12. ^
  13. ^ ""Free Ride" and "Frankenstein" from The Edgar Winter Group & "Freak on a Leash" and "Falling Away from Me" from KoRn Come to Rock Band!". January 13, 2012. Archived from the original on April 19, 2012. Retrieved September 30, 2012.

External linksEdit