Easy Rider (Music From The Soundtrack) album cover
Easy Rider (Music From The Soundtrack)

Various Artists

ABC/Dunhill Records

Easy Rider was a huge hit upon release in 1969, and one of the movies that propelled the so-called “New Hollywood” movement that lasted until the mid ’70s. Its soundtrack features two songs from Steppenwolf’s debut album — the motorcycle anthem “Born to Be Wild” and the anti-drug song “The Pusher” — as well as Jimi Hendrix’s “If 6 Was 9,” a cover of the Band’s “The Weight” (the movie used the original) by also-rans Smith, the Byrds’ “Wasn’t Born to Follow,” and a semi-title track, “The Ballad of Easy Rider,” by that group’s Roger McGuinn. Honestly, the Steppenwolf and Hendrix songs stand out like someone walking into a hippie party with a jambox and a jug of LSD-laced wine, but hey, even motorcycle enthusiasts need to mellow out every once in a while.

Phil Freeman

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