Wednesday, September 23, 2009

music to my ears....

I think kid's music is a really important part of kid's development.  So we have lots of it.  Oliver loves it.  I hate it.  Anyone who has had "toot toot chugga chugga big red car" stuck in their head for days on end will support me when I say it makes me want to stab my eyeballs out.  I've been sucking it up and taking one for the team, so to speak, by putting Oliver's enjoyment of music before my love of my own eardrums (which consequently spend a lot of time screaming for mercy). 

Recently, some very lovely Haligonian friends of ours adopted a 15 month baby girl!  (Shout out to baby A!).  And one of Baby A's mommies did something brilliant.  It is so brilliant that I am rather vexed I didn't think of it myself, before I spent two years suffering through "toot toot chugga chugga big red car" (Do you hate me yet for putting this in your head?!).

What she did is this...

She googled:  "Kids music that is tolerable to adults."    So simple.  So brilliant.  So so brilliant.  

So fellow parents - let's share some music info!  If anyone has any other suggestions for kids music that doesn't make their parents want to crash into the car in front of them.... suggest away!

Here's a few tried and true gems I've found that don't make me want to slit my wrists:

Barenaked Ladies - SnackTime.
Okay. So I've never really love the BNL's. But this album is fun. Oliver gives it two thumbs up. And - as an added bonus - if you buy this one, you can brag that you bought the BNL's last album before they broke up because Steven Page got busted for cocaine.

Dogs on Fleas -
Just got their latest album "A Beautiful World" from the library. Hallelujah. It's fun. It's weird. It's funky. More than one kitchen dance party with Mama and Ollie shaking their groove thangs has occured since we brought it home two days ago.

If you like a bit of twang in your life - check out The Hollow Trees (Self-released). It's kids tunes a la bluegrass and Oliver LOVES the banjo bits.

Here's some by bands that I love that I didn't know had kids albums.  Think folk/funk/indie rock stuff.  I cannot wait to find them. 

The Nields' "All Together Singing in the Kitchen"

Veda Hille with Duplex - pegged as Indie Rock for smalls and their minders
ablum by duplex

Here's some others that sound pretty cool to check out (the descriptions aren't mine - they're taken from various reviewers on the web!)

Jam Toast, "Silly Grown-ups, Punk Is For Kids."

Juanita the Spanish Lobster. This is the third release from the Stories in Music series, featuring the London Philharmonic, and it's a great one to listen to in the car, especially if you'd trying to avoid the popular automobile DVD player. The story is pretty simple: Juanita's a crabby crustacean who pines to live on land, but it's the combination of the cute, interactive story and spunky flamenco music -- among other music genres -- that make this a natural gateway to the kingdom of audio books.

The Terrible Twos  - If You Ever See an Owl...
Matt Pryor has channeled his considerable talents into kids' music and the result is wonderful. The Terrible Twos are actually the New Amsterdams (Pryor's adult band), so expect a melodic, thoughtful brand of quiet pop.

The Quiet Two - Make Some Noise (Not Big)
This Brooklyn-based duo draws inspiration from psychedelic British pop and their own wildly imaginative brains. Think the Small Faces playing a free-form variety show for kids.

And here's a really cool blog I found about kids tunes....definitely worth a look!

So folks - here's to happier listening!


  1. may I also suggest Dan Zanes, They Might Be Giant's ABC... and the whole Music Together song collection... music that won't make you want to drive off a cliff. I will definitely check out your suggestions too!! THANKS!

  2. I suggest any kids cd's by they might be giants. also pete seegers music cd's. Also you would be surprised what kids like of adult music as well. My kids really like Fiest, gogolbordello, anyhting afrobeat, weezer. If you cycle through your cd's you might be surprised by what they latch onto. We oftenlisten to kids music in the car but I also sometimes insist on cbc,and the kids often hear stuff they like on Q.

  3. Here's a page that might interest:

    There's also a collection of punk music for kids that was profiled on CBC radio a few years ago but I haven't found it yet . . . .

  4. thanks! these are awesome suggestions...

  5. Baby A also really likes Lisa Loeb's album, Catch the Moon. I have also caught her Mama listening to it after the baby has gone to bed!

  6. Hey: thanks for the Jam Toast nod. And Mama Zooey—I think you might actually be thinking about Jam Toast. We were interviewed on CBC in August of 2007 about our kids' album, Silly Grown-ups, Punk is for kids. You can even listen to the CBC interview in the press section at

    Cheers, Michael

  7. Oooh....we really love John Hadfield and Caspar Babypants (who is Chris Ballew from Presidents of the United States of America)....Kimya Dawson is also really good for kids, we love her especially because she has songs about/for kids of queers. Good luck on your musical adventures!