Our Top 10 Tom Cochrane Songs list presents the best Tom Cochrane Songs including “Life Is a Highway,” “No Regrets,” “Washed Away,” and more. Canadian-born and raised Tom Cochrane, former frontman of the rock group known as Red Rider, embarked on a solo career in 1991 after enjoying a decade’s worth of recording and touring success with the band. While with Ken Greer, Jeff Jones, Peter Boynton, and Rob Baker, Cochrane recorded a total of six studio albums, along with a live album, a greatest hits album, and a box set. In 2002, Cochrane reunited with Greer and Jones as Red Rider and the trio continue to perform together as a group. What may not be known among his music fans is Tom Cochrane released a studio album before hooking up with Red Rider as Hang On to Your Residence served as his debut recording in 1974. In 1975, My Pleasure Is My Business was a soundtrack his music was featured in a comedic movie that featured a storyline revolving around a president seeking to boost his popularity among the people by allowing an adult film star to live in his country.
Tom Cochrane Legacy
In addition to Cochrane’s impressive discography, he has also been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Walk of Fame. He was also cited as an officer of the Order of Canada. Before going solo as a recording artist, Tom Cochrane was already a popular name among Canadian rock music fans, thanks to his successful run as Red Rider’s lead vocalist. “Lunatic Fringe” still remains the all-time favorite song among the fans of this iconic rock group, and not just in Canada.
When Cochrane began his solo career, his album, Mad Mad World, became a worldwide success as its 1991 release has since earned it multi-platinum status after selling over six million copies. In total, Cochrane has six studio albums to his credit, along with a soundtrack and a compilation album. The release of Mad Mad World a second time in 2016 featured a deluxe edition from his original 1991 release, along with a disc featuring a 1992 live concert he performed in Chicago, Illinois. As a solo artist, Cochrane has also earned for himself eight Juno Awards, which is the Canadian equivalent of the American Music Awards held in the U.S.
Top 10 Tom Cochrane Songs
#10 – Crawl
“Crawl” was a number eleven hit on the Canada Top Singles chart when it was released from his Canadian-certified platinum album, Ragged Ass Road, in 1996. This acoustic work of musical art featured Tom Cochrane singing about a woman whom he observes as someone who refuses to crawl anymore as life continues to bring forth its hurdles. Inspired, he lyrically proclaimed he will do the same. In this musical story, the woman was a victim of abuse who chose to stand up tall instead of continuing to crawl on her knees.
#9 – Willie Dixon Said
From the album, X-Ray Sierra, “Willie Dixon Said” was a 1999 hit that peaked as high as number thirty on the Canada Top Singles chart. For Tom Cochrane, it was the final song from his recordings that earned a spot on the official music chart. This synth-favoring number was an inspiring narrative performed by Cochrane as he took the advice of Willie Dixon to find a place to clear his head and get his life back on track.
#8 – Wildest Dreams
In 1995, “Wildest Dreams” was a single Tom Cochrane released from his studio album, Ragged Ass Road. On the Canada Top Singles chart, it became a number five hit, thanks to the easy-listening performance by Cochrane as he shared a piece of his life story, as well as his relationship with his wife, Kathleen. After dealing with personal issues to get his life back on track, the admiration for his wife seemed evident as he performed what really is a sweet love song by a man who beautifully shared a mix of hope and memory that rightfully deserved to be called a hit.
#7 – Dreamer’s Dream
From Ragged Ass Road, “Dreamer’s Dream” was the third of four singles released from the album that became a hit on the Canada Top Singles chart. “Dreamer’s Dream” peaked at number four in 1996 as a fantastic ballad performed by Tom Cochrane that saw a harmonica solo at the beginning before going into a full song. “Dreamer’s Dream” is a gem, featuring Cochrane at his reflective best as a singing narrator sharing yet another piece of himself as an artist and as a person.
#6 – Mad Mad World
“Mad Mad World” served as the title track from Tom Cochrane’s most successful studio album date as a solo artist to date. Lyrically speaking, Cochrane delivered a genius song depicting the state of the world as it was portrayed on television and other media sources. As a single, this was released in 1992 and became a number twenty-five hit on the Canada Singles chart, as well as lodging a place in the hearts of fans who were in agreement with the narrative behind the song.
#5 – Washed Away
From the album, Mad Mad World, “Washed Away,” served as one of those great songs to simply get swept into. On the Canada Top Singles chart, it peaked as high as number seven and was a number eighty-eight hit on the US Billboard Hot 100. For Cochrane, “Washed Away” was the final hit that would crack into this particular US Billboard chart as a recording artist. The beauty behind this song was the sound advice Cochrane delivers, making it clear the world will continue to spin people in circles for as long as it keeps turning. As a person, it is up to each one to find a solid enough ground of their own to avoid getting “Washed Away” in the current.
#4 – Sinking Like a Sunset
“Sinking Like a Sunset” became a number two hit on the Canada Top Singles chart, making it the third single released from Mad Mad World to earn this achievement. In the song, the narrator references a woman, as well as his own personal experiences, as life brings about challenges we’d rather forget as we each struggle as human beings to avoid our hearts from sinking into the abyss. “Sinking Like a Sunset” saw Tom Cochrane at his best as a musical artist, bringing forth an emotionally powerful fan favorite.
#3 – I Wish You Well
From Tom Cochrane’s third studio album, Ragged Ass Road, the 1995 release of “I Wish You Well” came as an inspiration after Cochrane’s life experiences since the success of 1991’s Mad Mad World. As described by Cochrane, life for him while touring to support his second studio album fell into a state of chaos that saw him separate from his wife for a year before he was finally able to overcome his personal demons and put his life back on track. Ragged Ass Road, as an album, featured works of Tom Cochrane coming to terms with who he was as a person, along with how he wished to continue as a world-class performer. “I Wish You Well” was, and still is, a genuine desire for the recipient this song is addressing to enjoy a good life. On the music charts, “I Wish You Well” became Tom Cochrane’s second number one hit on the Canada Top Singles chart and fell just shy of one spot from cracking into the US Billboard Hot 100.
#2 – No Regrets
From the album, Mad Mad World, “No Regrets” was the second song released as a follow-up behind “Life Is a Highway.” Also released in 1991, “No Regrets” peaked as high as number three on the Canada Top Singles chart and was a number seven hit on the US Billboard Hot 100. As a recording artist, this was the second occasion Tom Cochrane would realize a top ten hit in his home nation of Canada, as well as in the U.S.
In Australia, “No Regrets” peaked at number twenty-six and served as the final occasion the artist would realize a hit among the nation’s official music charts. The beauty behind this song was how Cochrane lyrically performs as a person who has “No Regrets” when it comes to looking upon his life as a human being. Despite the ups and downs, triumphs, and trials, the musical advice given to keep looking forward instead of looking back deservedly made this song a fan favorite. For something truly inspirational as a song, “No Regrets” is it.
#1 – Life Is a Highway
“Life Is a Highway” can easily be described as Tom Cochrane’s signature song. In Manitoba, Canada, the provincial government renamed Highway 391 in 2016 after this hit song, which was released in 1991 on his album, Mad mad World. This stretch of highway is located near Tom Cochrane’s hometown of Lynn Lake, which is a thirteen-hour drive northwest of Winnipeg, Manitoba. This upbeat, life enjoyment song was a number one hit in Canada, a number six hit on the US Billboard Hot 100, and at least a top thirty hit among the nations of Australia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and Sweden. In Australia, Canada, and the U.S., “Life Is a Highway” became certified gold and was a 1992 Juno Award winner for Single of the Year, as well as Male Vocalist of the Year, and Mad Mad World‘s achievement as Album of the Year.
A cover version of “Life is a Highway” was performed by Rascal Flatts in 2006, was for the Pixar film, Cars, and became a number seven hit on the US Billboard Hot 100, a number ten hit on the RPM Canadian Country Tracks chart, and a number eighteen hit on the US Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. This version earned a platinum certification with the Recording Industry of America (RIAA), as well as in Denmark, and a gold certification with the U.K.’s British Phonographic Industry (BPI).
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