Music has always played a huge role in my life. I spent the summer of 1994 torturing our neighbors by blaring the Lion King soundtrack in our backyard for three straight months. As I got older, my musical tastes grew from Disney classics to pop, punk, rock, and country, and everything in between. My best friend and I would spend our weekends elbowing our way through crowds at concerts or driving around blaring the newest CD from the newest band we’d just discovered. My husband and I were our own DJ’s at our wedding and I spent most of my 20-hour labor yelling at him that he wasn’t playing the right songs for pushing.
OKAY, YOU GET IT. Music is important to me.
So entering this thing called motherhood meant exploring a new genre of music that I was unfamiliar with. I enthusiastically bought a bunch of CDs to listen to with my toddler—Raffi, Baby Einstein, The Wiggles—and basked in the knowledge that I was passing on my love for music to my little one. We listened to them a few times but they ended up sitting in my mini-van’s glove box collecting dust. I realized that an entire hour of the same sing-song rhythms and high-pitched nursery rhymes just turned me off. If I wanted a playlist of songs that was fun for me–I mean my son–to listen to, I was going to have to take matters into my own hands.
So, without further ado, here is my curated gift to all of you mamas that just want to listen to some music with your children without making your ears bleed.
Songs to Get Up And Move:
No More Monkeys, by Asheba
Octopus (Slippery Fish), by Charlotte Diamond
Run Baby Run, by Caspar Babypants
Baby Shark, by Super Simple Songs
Icky Sticky Bubble Gum, by David Landau
Songs to Slow It Down:
Over in the Meadow, by Charlie Hope
Row, Row, Row Your Boat, by Rob Newhouse
I Like to Make Music, by Nancy Kopman
Clap Clap Clap, by Mr. Heath
We’ll Hit the Floor Together, by Rahel (Ann Rachel)
Real Songs That Can Pass as Children’s Songs:
Surfin’Safari, by The Beach Boys
Somewhere Over the Rainbow, by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole
You’ve Got a Friend In Me, by Randy Newman
The Sound of Sunshine, by Michael Franti & Spearhead
Rocking Robin, by Bobby Day
Songs About The Seasons:
Jack Hartmann is a quirky artist that has fun, engaging songs that are meant to get children up and moving. He has a ton of Brain Break videos on YouTube and an amazing CD about the months/seasons called Rhythms and Rhymes for Special Times. If you’re looking for a song about the month of November or an upcoming Holiday, Jack Hartmann has got you covered!
Whether you’re clapping, stomping, or just dancing around your living room, music is a great way to get silly and connect with your little one. I hope these songs inspire you to listen to music with your kiddos and find a few new favorites to add to your playlist!