Keep On Truckin'

Album: Eddie Kendricks (1973)
Charted: 18 1


  • "Keep on truckin'" is a phrase of encouragement meaning to stay focused regardless of circumstances or setbacks. The term originates from a song first recorded by Blind Boy Fuller in the 1930s, "Truckin' My Blues Away."

    Truckin' on down the line
    Hey hey hey
    I say keep on truckin'
    Truckin' my blues away

    The phrase was popularized by the US underground cartoonist Robert Crumb in a one-page comic published in the first issue of Zap Comix in 1968. In this song, Kendricks is in pursuit of good lovin', as he's truckin' to see his girl.
  • This song was Eddie Kendricks' first major hit as a solo artist, coming two years after his departure from The Temptations. He believed it was the title that ensured it was a success. "The old people used to truck when they were dancing. And I knew the trucking industry would embrace the record," Kendricks told Fred Bronson.
  • The song's grooves were clearly aimed at the dance floor and it was arguably the first-recorded and released disco hit record. Other possible candidates for the first disco hit include "TSOP (The Sound of Philadelphia)," George McRae's "Rock Your Baby," The Hues Corporation's "Rock The Boat" and Barry White's "Can't Get Enough of Your Love, Babe."
  • The line, "In old Temptation's rain, I'm duckin'" is a sly reference to Kendricks' former band, The Temptations.

Comments: 4

  • AnonymousWhat a track, stands the test of time.Eddie Kendricks gone way too soon
  • Patrick K. Merrick from Hillsboro Oreg.I remember the song. There is a part one and part two. Were both parts released as singles or only part one?
  • Joyce from VegasNot true. Back when Blind Boy Fuller recorded it, songs alluding to sex were not permitted, hence the word "truckin" which rhymes with another word. That's what Fuller's song was about. Re-read the lyric using the forbidden word and you will see what I mean.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn December 29th 1973, Eddie Kendricks performed "Keep on Truckin'" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    At the time the song was at #40 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; and seven weeks earlier on November 4th, 1973 it peaked at #1 {for 2 weeks} and spent 19 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on September 30th it also reached #1 {for 2 weeks} on Billboard's R&B Singles chart...
    On the same 'Bandstand' show he also performed "Boogie Down"; and the very next day it entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 at position #76, then on March 3rd, 1974 it peaked at #2* {for 2 weeks} and stayed on the chart for 18 weeks...
    Edward James Kendricks passed away on October 5th, 1992 at the young age of 52...
    May he R.I.P.
    * The 2 weeks "Boogie Down" was at #2, the #1 record for both those weeks was "Seasons in the Sun" by Terry Jacks; but on February 3rd, 1974 “Boogie Down” peaked at #1 {for 3 weeks} on Billboard's R&B Singles chart.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Mike Love of The Beach Boys

Mike Love of The Beach BoysSongwriter Interviews

The lead singer/lyricist of The Beach Boys talks about coming up with the words for "Good Vibrations," "Fun, Fun, Fun," "Kokomo" and other classic songs.

Taylor Dayne

Taylor DayneSongwriter Interviews

Taylor talks about "The Machine" - the hits, the videos and Clive Davis.

Bible Lyrics

Bible LyricsMusic Quiz

Rockers, rappers and pop stars have been known to quote the Bible in their songs. See if you match the artist to the biblical lyric.

Janis Ian: Married in London, but not in New York

Janis Ian: Married in London, but not in New YorkSong Writing

Can you be married in one country but not another? Only if you're part of a gay couple. One of the first famous singers to come out as a lesbian, Janis wrote a song about it.

Jesus Thinks You're a Jerk: Rock vs. Televangelists

Jesus Thinks You're a Jerk: Rock vs. TelevangelistsSong Writing

When televangelists like Jimmy Swaggart took on rockers like Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica, the rockers retaliated. Bono could even be seen mocking the preachers.

Which Songs are About Drugs?

Which Songs are About Drugs?Fact or Fiction

"25 or 6 to 4" to "Semi-Charmed Life" - see if you can spot the songs that are really about drugs.