I prefer to have music playing throughout the day for my kids rather than TV whenever possible. I just love to see my little guy singing along while he plays and entertains himself. However, when I go to bed at night and have some kids' song repeating itself over and over in my head, I'd really rather have it be one that I actually enjoy listening to. Falling asleep to singing purple dinosaurs dancing in your head may be great for a toddler, but for me, not so much. So, I have been gradually building a playlist on my iPod of kids' music that I actually don't mind listening to.
There's really quite a bit of cute kids' music out there, and many kids' records put out by bands that you even may listen to. If you're an iTunes user, you can find my kids' music playlist in an iMix I just created. If you don't use iTunes, here are some that you might want to check out wherever you get your music...(click the images for Amazon links where you can hear samples and download)
The "Sleepytime Tunes" albums by the Lullaby Players puts out lullaby renditions of popular music by everyone from Dave Matthews to Johnny Cash to Jimmy Buffet. While there are no lyrics, you'll be singing along in your head while your child enjoys the relaxing instrumentals without corrupting their little minds with adult lyrics. ;-) There are also some great lullaby renditions of worship music as well.
"Rockabye Baby" is another one that puts a similar spin on your grown-up artists' favorites. They put out lullaby renditions of Coldplay, the Beatles, U2, Queen, Guns-n-Roses, and more!
I've found quite a few great songs on the "For the Kids" albums too, which are like compilations of music from various artist. They're a great place to start to get a feel for what's out there.
Lisa Loeb, They Might Be Giants, Barenaked Ladies, and Jewel are among many of the mainstream artists who have their own children's albums as well. Do a search on your favorite band and you just might find that they have kids' music you never knew about!
For some old school artists, check out "Songs to Grow On for Mother and Child," released in 1956 by Woody Guthrie and has some really cute music. If you're a fan of Peter, Paul & Mary, check out their kids' album released in 1969, "Peter, Paul & Mommy." Johnny Cash even has some great kids' music...check out "The Johnny Cash Children's Album."
I've found quite a few that just have really funny lyrics...
Others songs not necessarily from Children's album but we like:
Some cute and catchy songs..
Don't forget about classical music. Classical music and other instrumentals are great for kids too and you don't have to worry about any bad lyrics!
I know there is a ton of great kids' music out there that I haven't even seen or heard, so please do share and comment if you have a favorite that I haven't listed. I'd love to expand my collection!