Dad Rock

McCartney. The ultimate Dad Rock dad. 

McCartney. The ultimate Dad Rock dad. 

Ah, Dads. We quite literally wouldn't be here without them. 

As pillars of our DNA and often our lives, they provide us with a good many things. For some, it's limited to physical attributes—the same eyes, or a nose with the same particular bump. For others, dads play a significant role in the people they eventually become—his influence manifesting itself in their character, their hobbies and interests, or even who they date/marry. Yikes.

My own father's greatest impact on me has always been very obvious. Some of my earliest memories are of him playing Billy Joel's The Stranger in the living room, or listening to Jefferson Starship while he painted the walls in our new house—while wearing a cut-off sleeve shirt and paint-splattered dad-shorts of course. What I'm saying is, my dad loved music more than anybody else I knew. Besides constantly playing all kinds of stuff for us (the Go Go's, Devo, Supertramp, Cheap Trick, the Dave Clark Five, Steve Miller Band, ELO, Thin Lizzy, and of course the Beatles and the Beach Boys are the ones I remember the most), he further encouraged my sister and I to build our own library, routinely taking us to the big Tower Records store by our house and letting us pick out one thing each. 

I could say that not a day goes by where I don't thank him for giving me a proper and thorough introduction to my favorite thing in the whole world, but I think you would know that's a load of crap. Hell, that's what Father's Day is for—buttering up the man who gave you life with a bunch of crap—in gift form or otherwise! So here it is, a brief send-up to dear old dad. Not just mine, but yours, too. 

But hey, maybe you never knew your dad. Maybe you hate his guts for completely justifiable reasons. In that case, take this day as a chance to celebrate Dad Rock. One of the greatest, but simultaneously useless categorizations in music. What does Dad Rock mean exactly? Well, that's why it's useless. Some would say it's another term for "Classic Rock." Others would take a narrower view and say Dad Rock means soft-focus, "yacht-rock" like Steely Dan or The Doobie Brothers. Still others insist it's music made by dads, during the most dad-period of their careers aka Paul McCartney's solo stuff and Wings, Bruce Springsteen post-Tunnel of Love, or even something as relatively recent as Wilco—please watch the above Pitchfork video for a full overview.

To me, Dad Rock is something a little more philosophical. If I can see my dad grilling up some burgers, or putting some IKEA furniture together to it, it's Dad Rock. If I stole a band's t-shirt that's older than I am from his closet, that band is definitely Dad Rock. If I heard it for the first time when I was five and still love it to this day, I know that it's probably Dad Rock.

So enjoy this Father's Day playlist, filled with songs and bands that are not only my dad's favorites, but mine too. Call your dad!