Originally published on Sweetspot.ca
I became more passionate about music as I grew older, and eventually married someone who was born with an ear for music. But there's one thing we disagree on: whether or not our kids should listen to kids' music. I am of the mind that a mix of what we listen to and some kids' music is OK. But my husband cannot stand kids' music. He finds it patronizing. (So does my friend Rebecca Eckler, incidentally.)
I've tried to find middle ground with albums like The Johnny Cash Children's Album, They Might Be Giants' Here Come the ABCs and Barenaked Ladies' Snacktime. These he can actually enjoy as their musical merit is superior to your average rendition of "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" (incidentally, my kids' favourite bedtime song).
But still, J prefers to play them whatever music he likes best at the moment. And he must be doing something right. My kids walk up to our vinyl collection and choose The Beatles' Yellow Submarine. "It's my song!" squeals Lucy whenever "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" comes on. A few days later, they ask for Neil Young's "Beautiful Bluebird" at bedtime (a favourite of their dad's) and correct me when I get the words wrong.
Then came a contest asking for families to submit music videos for the Bunch Family/Luminato Fam Jam. My kids were out of their minds with excitement at the idea. We immediately wrote a song based on a band we've been listening to a lot:Arcade Fire.
I still think exposing your kids to any music is a good idea. J and I will have to agree to disagree on that one. (Lucy and I sneak on Maggie G's Around the House when he's not there.) But I'll give him a point for enriching our kids' lives with good music, because this is what happens when you do:
How do you feel about kids' music? What do you listen to with your kids?