Go Slow: A New Houston Playlist for Your Drive to Work

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For parents, it's hard to find a moment of peace.

Watching TV during the day? Please. Reading a book without interruptions that isn't about a gorilla that has to learn manners or whatthefuckever? Nope. Naps? Dude, forget that shit. I haven't slept during the day in five years. Best I've been able to do is sit still for a few minutes in a sort of open-eyed coma while my brain tries to figure out how my life went astray.

As such, I've come to cherish the incidental bits of quiet that happen during the day, including Car Time.

OH BEAUTIFUL, WONDERFUL CAR TIME. It is, in no uncertain terms, the best, truest form of freedom any man has ever known. That's why there are 1,000 movies/novels/whatevers about it; man, open road, existentialism, blahblahblah. I go to bed at night excited for it the next day. It's like Christmas morning, except I don't have to spend $900 on a bunch of shit that's going to be broken in two weeks.

It takes exactly 21 minutes for me to go from my front door to my seat at my desk at work. Four of those minutes are spent walking to and from my car, which leaves me with 17 glorious minutes of totally justified, guilt-free (you can only fake poop* so many times before it starts to whittle away at your conscience) quiet time. And since I can't trust the radio not to screw it up -- nothing will harsh your mellow more than goddamn Pitbull shouting about boats or culos -- I've created several playlists to listen to for maximum efficiency.

*Fake Pooping is the basketball pump-fake of Dad Moves. It's super effective if used sparingly. Go to it too often, though, and your wife will spike that shit into the third row when you offer it up.

The Tuesday, all-Houston, ultra-mellow, windows-down mix:

Devin the Dude, "Doobie Ashtray": Really, any song from Devin's Just Tryin' to Live would work here (the obvious choice would be "Lacville '79," but being obvious is so 2011). I don't know that any rapper has ever been able to get listeners into a meditative, floating-through-the-cosmos mind-set as quickly and efficiently as Devin. He's like a snake charmer*. Makes him perfect to start this sort of thing off. Zero time wasted.

*Probably 1,000 jokes to make here where you use "snake" as a euphemism for "penis."

Le$, "Gettin' High": This is from Le$'s most recent mixtape, Le$ Is More. It's mostly him rapping over other rappers' beats (in this case, it's over Trae's "Gittin' High"). Generally, beat-jack tapes feel like little more than creative lethargy, but with Le$ wandering around on them, it works more towards neocolonialism, which is a nearly monumental achievement. The flow from the first song to this one is seamless.

Delo feat. Big Sant & Jack Freeman, "Bust Ah Move," (Chopped Not Slopped version): There are a handful of people that will argue that the OG Ron C x Candlestick version of Delo's Hood Politics Vol. 3 is the best piece of rap music that's come out of Houston this year thus far, that betwixt Delo's grit, the album's sunburnt production style and the slowed, steady hand of the Chopstars, it deserves to be mentioned alongside the more creative rap projects of 2012 in general. Those people are probably right.

Dustin Prestige, "Plight of the Rapper": You know the thing where you ride in the car with your windows down and let your left arm hang out of the window and ride the wind like a wave? That's this.

Doughbeezy, "Blue Magic": Smokey-eyed pianos, tunneled horns, tip-tap-tip snares; this one might function as an atmosphere-setter more appropriately at night, but it works here if you're up and out early* enough. Also, there just aren't a lot of things that are going to make you feel cooler and more calm-confident while walking into a building than Doughbeezy going into his I'm-On-The-Rise-And-There's-Nothing-You-Can-Do-About-It rap mode. They should play this shit on the PA system at every office building in America first thing in the morning.

*I prefer to be moving around before anyone else in the house wakes up. I mean, have you ever been stuck behind two four-year-olds in line during their morning routine? It's the worst. They take, like, what has to be about two hours to brush their teeth. For real, them shits are going to fall out anyway. I don't know why they try so hard to keep them clean.

Follow Rocks Off on Facebook and on Twitter at @HPRocksOff.

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