Kids' Music Roundup: A Slew of New Family CDs

Filed under: Activities: Babies, Music, Activities: Toddlers & Preschoolers, Gear Guides: Babies, Gear Guides: Toddlers & Preschoolers

There have been so many new kids' music albums released in the past couple of months that it's hard to narrow down our picks to just a handful. But, here are some of the best, most noteworthy new releases for your wee ones' next impromptu dance party.

Jamie Broza: "I Want a Dog!"

Broza is one of the few artists who has children singing on his album and the results aren't cloyingly sweet. Most of these songs -- several of which have a groovy, "Girl from Ipanema" feel to them, speak directly to little kids. Although, there's a nice bit of parent-guilting in there, too, on "Turn That Phone Off". Young ones will enjoy both the pleasant tunes and the funny, not-corny skits. As a side note, 20% of all proceeds go to the North Shore Animal League.

moona luna pinata party

Moona Luna: "Piñata Party!"

For a deviation from your standard kid-pop, try the bilingual, Latin-tinged tunes of Moona Luna. Never mind that the disc can help kids pick up a little Español (or at least augment the Spanish they learn from Dora), it's also the kind of can't-help-but-make-you-happy music that will give them lots of exercise with all the dancing they'll do, too.

david weinstone: music for aardvarks and other mammals: all i want!

David Weinstone: "Music for Aardvarks and Other Mammals: All I Want!"

As usual, Weinstone offers a real mix of music. Some track's sounds come off like the interactive sing-a-longs of a children's music class (which is how Music for Aardvarks got its start), while Weinstone channels his inner Kurt Cobain with grinding grunge guitars on others. There's a big mix, but all of the 19 tracks stand a good chance of making little kids happy.

ella jenkins: a life of song

Ella Jenkins: "A Life of Song"

This album, part of Smithsonian Folkways' African American Legacy Recordings series, is without a doubt, the most edifying of the new year. On this CD, octogenarian and national treasure, Jenkins sits down with a bunch of kids, chatting about her own life and history -- while singing her way through classic African American folk, blues, and spiritual tunes. It's a first-person history lesson set to music.

daddy a-go-go: grandkid rock

Daddy A-Go-Go: "Grandkid Rock"
If you haven't heard any of Daddy A-Go-Go's previous seven albums, this "greatest hits" compilation is a great way to introduce yourself and your kids to John Boydston's pop-culture-strewn rock songs. Some of the references may feel a little old at this point (Backstreet Boys, Johnny Bravo), but the puns, "For Those About to Walk, We Salute You," and "Eat Every Bean and Pea on Your Plate," still have as much zing as the guitars.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.