Filed under: Listen Up | Tags: She & Him, The Smithsonian Folkways, WERS, Woody Guthrie
I think every person has a different type of relationship to music. For some, it’s the air they breathe, for others it is just a way to pass time. Whatever their relationship to music may be, I hope that my children will appreciate and understand how we as a family have connected with certain artists or albums. I can only speak for myself here but I believe I am not the only one who has distinct memoirs of my parents playing music in our home and I am interested to see what musical memories my girls will carry with them. I really try my hardest to be sure my daughters are brought up around a diversified selection of music. I know someday they will make their own listening choices and I probably won’t agree with all of them but my hope is that I have provided them with a musical foundation that helps them to appreciate a wide variety of genres.
Lately we have been listening to Boston-based radio station, WERS a lot. WERS 88.9 is described on their website as “music for the independent mind”. It’s on pretty much everywhere we go, the car, home, our shop. Depending on the time of day you can hear anything from jazz to reggae to electronic music. It’s got great diversity and I highly recommend you checking it out. If you are outside the Boston area, no need to fret because you can live stream from their website.
My girl’s (and myself, of course) love She & Him. They have a new album out entitled “Volume 2″ and it’s fantastic. Zooey’s voice is cheerful and sweet. The album has a definite retro sound and every song catchy. It’s hard not to tap your toes and hum along.
Another favorite is Woody Guthrie. Guthrie is an infamous American folk singer and songwriter. I love “Goodnight Darling/Goodnight Arlo” a song for his son about getting ready for bedtime. The Smithsonian Folkways has produced multiple albums by Guthrie and all of them are a pleasure.
I would love to hear your recommendations for music for my little ones. What do you play for your kids and what do you remember your parents playing for you?
Filed under: Listen Up
I believe music should play an important role in any child’s life. I consciously make the effort to expose them to different sounds, styles, and voices. Every once in a while I will be sharing my family’s musical favorites in our “listen Up” category.
This week I wanted to share with you the Smithsonian Folkways website which is a non-profit record label from the Smithsonian Institute, it’s wonderful to explore. You can read more about the history of Folkways Records HERE (very interesting). The size of their music collections is jaw dropping. One could spend hours going through their site. A good place to start is their Children’s section or try searching their huge database by genre, artist, or album.
My girls’ are really digging cELLAbration: A Tribute To Ella Jenkins. Ella Jenkins was known as “The First Lady of Children’s Music” and with a career spanning over 50 years and countless prestigious awards including the Lifetime Achievement Award from The Recording Academy it is an appropriate title. This album is a compilation of modern renditions of some of Ella’s best work done by today’s leading folk musicians pay. We recommend “You’ll Sing a Song and I’ll Sing a Song” by Cathy Fink and “Go Miss Mary Mack” performed by Sweet Honey in The Rock.
“Sunny Day” by Elizabeth Mitchell is another favorite in our house. This album is what kid’s music should sound like. Elizabeth’s voice is smooth, soft, and sweet and she sings happy little tunes. She appropriately uses children singing along with her in a way that sounds innocent and lovely. Her cover of “Lovely Day” is heaven and the album’s title song “Sunny Day” evokes sunshine and rainbows and all kinds of goodness. My favorite part of this album? It’s NOT annoying. Let’s face it, most music geared towards children is of the sort that makes you want to tear your hair out. “Sunny Day” is nothing like that. I highly recommend it.
I would love to hear what your little one’s are listening to!!