Literary Mixtape: The Three Musketeers


If you’ve ever wondered what your favorite literary characters might be listening to while they save the world/contemplate existence/get into trouble, or hallucinated a soundtrack to go along with your favorite novels, well, us too. But wonder no more! Here, we sneak a look at the hypothetical iPods of some of literature’s most interesting characters. What would be on the personal playlists of Holden Caulfield or Elizabeth Bennett, Huck Finn or Harry Potter, Tintin or Humbert Humbert? Something revealing, we bet. Or at least something danceable. Read on for a cozy reading soundtrack, character study, or yet another way to emulate your favorite literary hero. This week: Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, Dumas’ Les Trois Mousquetaires.

Dumas’ The Three Musketeers is a restless young man’s fantasy: a bunch of friends who are thick as thieves, battling their way through the world while adhering to the highest moral code. Though the titular Musketeers each have their own distinct personalities — Athos is the interior father figure, Porthos the party boy, Aramis the ladies man, and let’s not forget chivalrous D’Artangnan — were they to be hanging out today, they’d probably be trekking from adventure to adventure in some kind of van, and they’d have to compromise on tunes, everyone putting in their own two cents and making for a somewhat eclectic mix. Here’s what we think they’d duel, woo, and totally turn out to be the Comte de la Fère to.

Stream the full mix here.

“Three Cool Cats” — The Coasters

This song has all sorts of swagger, as befits three friends such as these. Plus, it tells of three cool chicks, which Aramis would definitely be psyched about.

“Lean On Me” — Bill Withers

Because it’s all for one and one for all, natch.

“Dirt Off Your Shoulders” — Jay-Z

“With a little more heart, [D’Artagnan] might have been contented with this new conquest; but the principal features of his character were ambition and pride.”

“Fighting in a Sack” — The Shins

The almost naughty exuberance of this song makes us think that the boys would dig it while celebrating a sweet victory.

“Bonnie & Clyde” — Serge Gainsbourg

We know at least one Musketeer is attracted to lady criminals — and would it take so much to turn him to the dark side? Plus, they are French, after all.

“Californication” — The Red Hot Chili Peppers

The ultimate road trip song for four dudes looking for love and adventure.

“I’m Bad” — LL Cool J

This is the brash, pompous Porthos’ contribution. The cops are chasin’ but he still knows he’s the best.

“I Get Around” — The Beach Boys

And sexy hipster-bait Aramis’ favorite song. Ladies love guys who love the Beach Boys. Right?

“How A Resurrection Really Feels” — The Hold Steady

D’Artagnan and the Musketeers are total Hold Steady guys — too smart for the bars they’re in, too sensitive for the fights they’re picking, all looking for a resurrection.