Old Chat with Young Man

A thoughtful Q&A with the Internet-dubbed whiz kid Colin Caulfield.

Shannon Ryan

What: Young Man

When: 7:30 p.m., Monday

Where: 7th St. Entry, 701 N. First Ave., Minneapolis

Cost: $10 in advance; $12 at the door

Age: 18+


Singer-songwriter Colin Caulfield came of age in the Internet era as a frequent YouTuber. His inventive covers of songs by major luminaries in the indie-music scene — Beach House and Deerhunter, among others — are what colored him as a musician to watch. Wanting to expand his sound and record his own tracks, Caulfield began moonlighting under the name Young Man, eventually joining forces with four instrumentalists to add depth to his indie-pop outfit.

With Caulfield’s soothing croon and the band’s experimental approach to making pop music, Young Man’s technological footprint has made its mark across a number of online music channels. A handful of those media — Esquire and Spinner among them — applaud the band’s radical sound and tag its frontman as a young man with an intelligence worth noting.

A&E got ahold of the musician to engage in a Q-and-A we deemed intellectually stimulating and appropriate. Answers lie ahead, intellect in tow.


A&E: Do you believe ignorance is truly bliss?

As someone who worries about things entirely too much, I really do. Generally my mood is most affected by heavy things I see in the news or getting a fat bill in the mail. Not having to deal with a lot of that would be pretty bliss[ful]. It’s all part of growing up and being a real person, though — I wouldn’t have it otherwise.


What are your thoughts on life after death?

I vacillate between very much living in the present and worrying about the future, but I never give too much thought to death and any life after it. I went through catholic schooling through college, but I fell out of believing in it pretty early on. It’s likely I’ll think about it more when I’m older, but right now it’s a non-issue for me.


If you could choose to live under the guidance of any presidential administration, whom would you choose and why?

This answer is less informed by political or policy knowledge and more by emotion, but I’ve always had a really romantic and dramatic idea of America under the JFK Administration. It was such a potent time and one where people seemed to truly start coming together as a country. He was such an emblematic and tragic figure.


Do you feel the leader is more important than the follower or does the follower have equal importance?

I think the leader obviously has a lot more control, but that control is based on his or her ability. If the leader is doing a terrible job, the followers may go elsewhere.


If you were to digest and follow the philosophy of only one philosopher, whom would you choose? Why?

I don’t know that I’d ever want to live by any one person’s word or ideas, but I will say that [Jacques] Derrida and deconstruction really messed me up in college and changed the way I think about a lot of things.


What are your thoughts on the concept of objectivity: Does it exist?

Every single person sees the world differently, and the idea that there’s any one truth or reality is kind of false to me. Even scientific truths are rendered obsolete in time and with new discovery. But on an individual basis, I don’t think anyone can successfully be objective. There’s always going to be some predisposition coloring what is seen.


What do you think was the real reason the chicken crossed the road?

[Laughing] We all have to get where we’re going — a chicken’s no different. He was just getting to the other side.