Trust Me On This

Trust Me on This: Father knows culture best

What's the one album, movie or cultural obsession you'd pass on to your kids? Famous dads share their picks

  • R.A.
    Shutterstock/Salon

    R.A. Dickey on “Star Wars”

    As I grew, I began to see “Star Wars” as a metaphor for so much – whether it was the natural depravity of man, or the redemption of man, or the relationship between a father and a son in Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader. It encapsulated a lot of what I want to teach my children.

  • Rhett
    Salon/Benjamin Wheelock

    Rhett Miller on David Bowie’s “Hunky Dory”

    This album, recorded when I had been less than a year old, opened doors for me. Putting up with all the cruel dullards in my grade school, all the teachers and coaches, all the stupid kids and mean adults, had been almost unbearable. Suddenly, I wasn’t alone.

  • Rick
    Johnathan M. Thomas via Shutterstock/Salon/Benjamin Wheelock

    Rick Moody on The Beatles’ “Let It Be”

    My 3-year-old daughter was transported by the song. It is hard not to feel that the title, the refrain, is sung with real insight, a real understanding about what it feels like to need the sentiment expressed therein.

  • Joe
    Draw via Shutterstock/Benjamin Wheelock

    Joe Bastianich on wine

    In a world where we control everything, the idea that there’s something we can’t control, where we’re just participants — that’s been very powerful for me. So having my kids be involved in the tradition of wine-making would be incredible.

  • Capt.
    Salon/Benjamin Wheelock

    Capt. Chesley Sullenberger on “A Christmas Carol”

    I think the movie is a story about a humanity that we all have, and we need to make sure it’s not asleep. Our daughters seem to have that sense of awareness of others and their needs.

  • Chris
    WDG via Shutterstock/Benjamin Wheelock

    Chris Eigeman on “Abbey Road”

    The album, it seems, is a launching pad for many of my son’s great questions. Then his friend said it was bad. And I knew it had started; the inevitable war for status using musical taste.

  • Matthew
    Salon/Benjamin Wheelock

    Matthew Specktor on his daughter’s taste in music

    You are some rough clay, flesh of my flesh, but the thing is, I don’t care. I simply can’t bring myself to think it matters what you love or don’t love, or rather, can’t imagine my own love for you being inflected by what you do.

  • Adam
    Salon/Benjamin Wheelock

    Adam Mansbach on iPods and vinyl

    What are we looking for, as we ransack our uncles’ attics and squat uncomfortably over thrift store bins? The record god Afrika Bambaataa claimed it was “the perfect beat,” but really it is what we’re always seeking: ourselves.

  • Christopher Buckley on “Moby-Dick”

    The book contains within it the most soul-stirring lines in American literature. What is beyond dispute is that its author swung for the fence, went for the Big One, risked everything to put his genius and all his art on the altar.

  • Dean Wareham on Jonathan Richman

    I found a copy of “The Modern Lovers” in a used record store on Cuba Street in Wellington, New Zealand. A singer either pulls you in or doesn’t. At age 17, I knew I hadn’t heard another singer like this.

  • Peter Bauer on rock ‘n’ roll and dancing

    Like most things you try to teach your children, you end up learning something new yourself. One notion that comes back quick is that rock ‘n’ roll is really only any good if it has a beat and you can dance to it. Children may not like a lot of things you like, but what they do, I guarantee is probably pretty damn great. Kids love the Ramones — every kid I know. Kids do not like the first Palace Brothers record.

  • Lloyd
    iStockphoto/RonTech2000/Salon

    Lloyd Cole on David Bowie’s “Low”

    Listen to “Low” from start to finish and you’re in for a musical awakening. It’s beauty I want, and the meeting, here, of arguably the three greatest rock music minds of their time — David Bowie, Brian Eno and Tony Visconti — delivers a beauty I had never heard before. I’m still in awe of it.