What are you doing for music during car rides with your toddler? I figured I’d be the parent who continues to play my regular podcasts and Spotify playlists, and that did work out fine for at least the first year. Now that my kid is starting to vocalize his opinions and is aware of Cocomelon songs existing on my phone, though, there’s more backseat dissent than I can tolerate if the entertainment isn’t tailored to his tastes.
I know. Don’t give in. But I do. And on those days when I can’t stand yet another round of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm,” we’ve found a solution that absolutely delights my inner pre-teen heart. 90S BOY BAND JAMZ.
One of my son’s favorite things to say to people right now is, “Bye!” He waves good-bye to cars that pass, he says “bye!” to everyone at the library, I respect immensely his ability to say “bye bye!” and wave in any situation he wants to leave. So, obviously, *NSYNC’s “Bye Bye Bye” was an instant hit. I was a Backstreet girl, myself, so to my delight, my son loves chiming in on the “yeaahhhhhh” part of the chorus in BSB’s “Everybody.” Our pre-Millenium pop songs are so simple that most contain hooks with vocabulary words popular with toddlers– a win/win for your kid passenger and your “I’m totally a cool mom in her 30s” self. You’re welcome.
Our tyke has always loved music, and he’s started to bop along and “dance” so I’m dead from the adorableness. A friend of mine introduced us to Raffi, who I’d never heard of previously, and now he’s a frequent Spotify play in our house on the Alexa/ government listening device.
Raffi is hokey kids’ music- I’ve already got all the lyrics down to “Banana Phone”!- but our son loves it, so I guess this type of music exists for a reason. So many pregnancy advice books told me to find a song we could play to the kid in utero that would be his favorite when he burst forth, but we’re not hugely musical people and never found the “right” one. Poor kid did listen to “Rain On Me” by Lady Gaga & Ariana Grande at least 100 times during my pregnancy, though, so maybe we should revisit it??
I try to play him Fleetwood Mac and Simon & Garfunkel and his dad plays him The Beatles a lot because… I don’t know, we’re trying to culture him? Make him a really cool, old soul seven-month-old? Or probably because he’s too young and impressionable to actually be exposed to my garbage music preferences of Fall Out Boy songs popular in high school, explicit Cardi B, and “Bulls on Parade.” I should play him the Space Jam soundtrack more since that’s hands down the best movie soundtrack of all time.
Babies do love a full musical performance, so if you know the lyrics, I can recommend ELO and Meatloaf, though you’ll feel positively ancient and that you’ve already turned into the embarrassing parent you promised yourself you wouldn’t be. So, Raffi. Thanks, Rachael, for the music tip. I now pass it along to you, dear reader.