Music for everyone's ears
Songs For Wiggleworms
Various Artists (Old Town Schoiol of Folk Music)
This latest compilation of children’s classics by Old Town School of Folk Music Wiggleworms teachers manages to reinvent timeless preschool tunes thanks to a twist of the school’s grassroots charm. Listen to it with your kids, and you’ll feel like a fly on a kindergarten classroom wall, catching glimpses of their joy at recognizing and singing along to songs sung by familiar voices. Our favorites: popular local singer Laura Doherty’s angelic voice on tracks including “If All of the Raindrops” and “Are You Sleeping?” and classic-rock hits “La Bamba” and “Twist and Shout” that guarantee you and the little ones will be shaking your tail feathers together.
The Final Funktier
Recess Monkey (Recess Monkey)
The Seattle trio of grade-school teachers has a reputation as one of the most innovative kids’ music bands playing today, and this latest release of futurists/space-odyssey-themed tracks maintains its street cred. Blasting off into the galaxy with moon boot–tapping tunes like “Jet Pack” and “How Do You Build a Robot?” the musicians sing about a world where anything is possible. The only downside: The funky pop songs may make it hard to break it to Junior that a trip to outer space isn’t in the family budget.
Funky, Fresh and Sugar Free
Sugar Free Allstars (Wiser Music)
The sounds put out by Chris “Boom!” Wiser and Rob “Dr. Rock” Martin are sweet as can be—the saxophone and drum duo deliver a simple, smooth jazz–infused soundtrack of original songs like “Disco Dance Party” that make for a fun kids’ party soundtrack. The highlight of the album is the funky, fresh rendition of the Beatles’ “Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da,” a direction the Allstars will hopefully keep going in future releases.
Justin Roberts (Carpet Square Records)
Being compared to the likes of James Taylor and Paul McCartney is no small potatoes for any musician, and Evanston’s Justin Roberts keeps the standards high on his newest release of insightful tracks recalling universal childhood experiences to which all ages can relate. Whether it’s praying for an unexpected playdate on “Snow Day” or feeling like a show pony at the barber shop on “New Haircut,” the storyteller’s clever lyrics will be appreciated by parents, while kids joyfully bop their heads along to Roberts’s charming voice and upbeat melodies.