Flavorwire Exclusive: Craig Finn of The Hold Steady’s Playlist for Adam Wilson’s ‘What’s Important Is Feeling’


Adam Wilson’s debut, Flatscreen, was the sort of hilarious novel that made us laugh and cringe to the extent that we still feel a little awkward labeling it a coming-of-age tale. With his second book, What’s Important Is Feeling, Wilson shows that he’s just as capable of telling unforgettable stories, and this collection gives us 12 of them by one of our best young writers.

One fan of Wilson’s work, Craig Finn of The Hold Steady (whose new album, Teeth Dreams, is due out March 25), liked the book so much that he felt compelled to put together this playlist of songs that came to mind while reading the stories — stories which might make you recall some of the dead-end kids and other assorted weirdos Finn sings about in his band. Obviously any playlist featuring The Replacements, The Fall, Weakerthans, and Big Star on it is a great listen, but to get the full effect, be sure to play it while reading What’s Important Is Feeling.

Adam Wilson’s story: “Soft Thunder”

Craig Finn’s picks:

“Formed a Band” — Art Brut “Continuous Thunder “– Japandroids “Back of a Car” — Big Star

“Long In-Between”

“In-Between Days” — The Cure “The Israelites” — Desmond Dekker

“Things I Had”

“Washington Bullets” — The Clash “Telegram Sam” — Bauhaus (original by T.Rex, but I like the Bauhaus version better)

“December Boys”

“September Gurls” — Big Star “Rocky Raccoon” — Beatles “No Fun” — Stooges

“Some Nights We Tase Each Other”

“She Came in Thru the Bathroom Window” — Beatles “Eyes of the World” — Grateful Dead

“We Close Our Eyes”

“All Things Must Pass” — George Harrison “Hip Priest” — The Fall “Video Games” — Lana Del Rey

“Tell Me”

“Janine” — David Bowie “Molly’s Lips” — Vaselines

“Sluts at Heart”

“Suspicious Minds” — Elvis Presley “Burning Love — Elvis Presley

“America Is Me & Andy”

“Hard Drive” — Evan Dando “Suburban Home” — The Descendents

“What’s Important Is Feeling”

“Show Biz Kids” — Steely Dan “Benediction” — The Weakerthans

“The Porchies”

“Swingin’ Party” — The Replacements “Two Headed Dog” — Roky Erickson “4th of July” — X


“My Drug Buddy” — Lemonheads “Rock Lobster” — B52s “Jesus Doesn’t Want Me For a Sunbeam” — Vaselines