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Modern Man

April 6, 2011

So, this headphone masterpiece isn’t all about songs and devices of yore. I may be losing my edge like so many others whose jobs and families have cut into music geekery. But, I’m certainly not living in the past when it comes to music.

Arcade Fire came to mind immediately upon hearing the news my we were pregnant. Sure, “Ready to Start” is a depressing break up-y kind of composition, but I love the chorus and energy so.

“My mind is open wide/Now I’m ready to start,” seemed like an appropriate credo as a new phase of my life began instantly — similar to the immediacy “Ready to Start” demands from the opening chords.

It’s a great opener for the mix and that’s where it sits right now.

My other modern marvel came to me listening to the radio the other day driving into work. I was familiar with Wilco’s “You and I” from the band’s latest record, but never heard it as powerfully as that morning.

It packs the same emotional punch as “Jesus Don’t Cry,” my favorite tune from Yankee Foxtrot Hotel. It also has this verse: “You and I/We might be strangers/However close we get sometimes/It’s like we’ve never met.”
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One of the early joys of fatherhood is feeling that first flurry of kicks from your wife’s stomach. While that verse is intended to mean something completely different given the bittersweet context of “You and I,” it nails the sometimes frustrating feeling we expectant fathers get: Touch, but no look.

No matter how close I get to him — sometimes mere centimeters — we haven’t met. I do have an “in,” though. He can hear the music.

“I don’t need to know everything about you/And you don’t need to know that much about me.”

A note about the His First Mix project: I am creating a mix for my unborn son in an attempt to indoctrinate him with excellent musical taste prior to his arrival this July. The plan is simple enough: Plunder my memory vaults in search of the sounds that shaped my life, prune selections to suit my wife’s taste, and pray this pre-birth jukebox gives my better third a head start on a lifetime of musical exploration. I’ll chronicle the process on Post Rock and on the Twitter with the hashtag #hisfirstmix.

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