“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 and number 10 on Cash Box. In Canada, it peaked at number eight.
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.