Music for kids reverberates year-round
Posted September 3, 2012
Summer vacations are coming to an end as school starts back up, but that doesn't mean families stop spending time in their cars. USA TODAY picks the brain of Dan Zanes, lead singer of Dan Zanes and Friends (and formerly of The Del Fuegos), for a few new suggestions for kid-friendly road music.
Elena Moon Park and Friends, Rabbit Days and Dumplings (out Sept. 25)
"She's from Korea and was raised in Tennessee," says Zanes. "She re-imagines traditional songs from different parts of Asia like China, Japan, Korea and Tibet. It sounds like a party."
Elizabeth Mitchell, Little Seed
"These are Woody Guthrie songs that she puts her own spin on, so it's like the past and the future coming together on a high level."
Mista Cookie Jar & The Chocolate Chips, Ultramagnetic Universal Love Revolution
"He's from Los Angeles, kind of a hipster, dresses really well and he's clearly having fun with the music. And with that title, how could you not love it?"
Tucheze Pamoja, Swahili 4 Kids
"I love that it's in Swahili, for starters. Music is such a great way to understand the world we live in."
The New Lost City Ramblers, Old Timey Songs for Children
"This is a reissue from Folkways Records, which is the label I grew up on. Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie were on that label, too. The band, which included Seeger's late half-brother Mike, has been making music for 50 years, and these are the songs that I loved as a kid."
The Uncle Devin Show, Drum Tales!
"He's doing something interesting, talking about his experiences as an African American. I really liked that he presented them in such a personal way. It's another way to teach kids to have a big world view."
Aaron Nigel Smith & One World Children's Chorus, Welcome to the Village!
"He went around Brooklyn, Kenya and England working with children's choirs. I think that's the most beautiful thing, to bring kids into the equation."
Villalobos Brothers, Aliens of Extraordinary Ability
"This is the latest CD from these young brothers who grew up in Veracruz, Mexico, and now live in New York. This is a crazy ball of sound: Mexican coastal traditions meet Sam Cooke in the Bronx!"
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