Hanukkah Music for Kids

Did you know that Hanukkah begins at sundown on Friday, December 11 this year? That's right, the Eight Nights of Light are approaching, so I've compiled a list of great Hanukkah music for kids over at About.com to help celebrate the season, from klezmer to pop, from traditional to silly remakes. Let us know if any other children's artists have released a Hanukkah CD and we'll add it to the list!

Thanksgiving Fun

Hope everybody had a great Thanksgiving! We had a blast trying to explain football to a three-year-old.

Friday Free-for-All # 22

After a brief respite, we're back with our weekly Friday Free-for-All!

King Pajama - Something Sweet

Brooklyn's Jason Blechman (piano) and Nina Zeitlin (vocals) team up as King Pajama to lay down some loungy jazz tunes tinged with blues, with help from Daniel Gould, Gerard Egan, and Tomas Cataldo on drums and guitar. Think The Brand New Heavies but with more coffee house swing than dance floor groove. Hey, Something Sweet made Jeff's OWTK Top 10 list for 2009!

John Jeffrey Hodges - Kiddy Dittys (A Kids' Album for Adults)

Straight outta Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan comes John Jeffrey Hodges, a musician with a long history of songwriting credits. His first family CD, Kiddy Dittys, will remind you stylistically of Bruce Cockburn or Peter Himmelman, but the thoughtful lyrics are about kids' stuff like bikes, parents (and parenting), imagination, feelings, and family time.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Looking for an alternative to a turkey-full Turkey Day? Check out Todd McHatton's "The Happy Vegan Thanksgiving Song."

You might remember Todd from his popliciously psychedelic kids' album Grass Stained Twilight. Well, his Thanksgiving tune, sounding kinda like a Meat Puppets outtake, falls right in line with Twilight's cosmic pop vibe, and boasts a really cool lyric. Dig:

"The Happy Vegan Thanksgiving Song"

Animals gathered round the table / Singin' songs and holdin' hands

This is a decree for all the species / This is a celebration!

Wishing you all a Happy Vegan Thanksgiving

It's a celebration / With bears and birds and turtles and girls and boys and so much more

Celabrating the joy of living / It's what we're all here for

This is a decree for all the species / This is a celebration!

Wishing you all a Happy Vegan Thanksgiving

Please pass the yams! / Please pass the stuffing too / Please pass the garlic mashed potatoes / You say you never ate those? / Oh they're so good too!

Please pass the greens! / Please pass the pearl onions / You gotta try some / Pass some green beans and corn and rolls / Please pass the squash and cranberry sauce

Oh no, I'm already way too full!

Give the gift of Kindermusik this holiday season

Looking for the perfect present this holiday season? Know someone who would be interested in giving a gift that truly “keeps on giving”? As you know, the benefits of Kindermusik not only last a few months or a few years—they last a lifetime.

This year, Grandma, Grandpa, aunts, uncles, friends, or anyone, can give your little ones the gift of Kindermusik. I have Kindermusik gift certificates available in any denomination. Gift givers can get in touch with me by email or call (813) 503-6976, and I will provide simple instructions for purchasing a gift certificate to be applied toward Kindermusik tuition and/or home materials at Delightful Sounds. Gift certificates purchased before December 7th are sure to arrive in the mail in plenty of time to find their way under the Christmas tree, into stockings, or get hand delivered with a hug.

Are you wondering if grandparents love giving Kindermusik as a gift? Just check out this video of a Kindermusik grandma who has pledged to sponsor Kindermusik for any of her 17 grandchildren who want it!

The Power of Music

This video really intrigued me. Many people claim that music is a gift for only the "chosen few", yet here is a room full of people who are not musicians producing a cohesive tune based on the body movements of jazz musician Bobby McFerrin. No instruments or music to follow-just expectation. It really shows how instinctual music can be. I use the word instinct, because I believe we are born with this ability. It grows as we experience music throughout our lifetime. Even a new baby will respond to a familiar tune. I hope you enjoy singing along with the video!

World Science Festival 2009: Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates the Power of the Pentatonic Scale from World Science Festival on Vimeo.

Holiday Events

As the end of the year approaches, we have a lot of fun music events coming up at Delightful Sounds for your families. I wanted to be sure any local blog readers would be able to keep up with them all, so here's a list.

  • November 23 - Online enrollment begins for the Spring 2010 Kindermusik classes. The Spring semester is set to begin on January 4.

  • November 30 - 7:00 PM - Mom's Night Out - Just in time for Christmas, this jewelry making party costs $15 and includes the materials for making three pairs of earrings. Please RSVP to attend.

  • December 4 - 10:00 AM - Military Kindermusik Playdate - This free music event is open to families of active military personnel and takes place at the MacDill Family Resource Center in Brandon.

  • December 21-22 - Jingle Jangle Christmas Event - This annual event will feature an hour of Christmas music, dancing, and fun for the whole family. Day and evening class times are available for this popular event, so be sure to reserve your spot today! Cost is $10 per child.

Planting "Musical" Seeds of Love

Planting Seeds of Love:
Making music with babies and their caregivers.
by Pam Donkin

One of my favorite things to do is to work with babies and their caregivers to help encourage bonding and musical response between them. Babies are never too young for music! After all, most begin hearing, in utero, around the 4th month. The same way they are learning the language of their culture they can also learn music. When surrounded by music they actually begin reacting and trying to make music with you! It can be so much fun for adults to learn how to recognize and encourage that playful exchange, and of course the babies just love it! The babies are fascinated by everything we adults do and when we focus on them and sing, they immediately start either kicking their feet , moving to the rhythm, or they may begin to coo and many times will coo in the key in which you are singing to them! If they do coo or make some other sound the best way to begin a musical conversation is to coo back to them. That encourages them to continue and then you can go back to singing the song which further encourages them to continue the exchange. Cooing is a beautiful, non- verbal way to deepen the relationship and at the same time get the language out of the way. I call it planting seeds of love.

-by Pam Donkin

Pam Donkin is an award-winning songwriter, performer and recording artist on the Gentle Wind label. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area she presents workshops for babies (ages infant to age 12 mo) and their caregivers as well as family music programs ( children's ages 2-8) in the Bay Area and beyond.For further information go to www.pamdonkin.com

Teaching Artists' Organizations

Here's a great resource!



Email list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/associationofteachingartists/
Contact: Dale Davis, Executive Director


San Francisco
Teaching Artists Organized

Newsletter: Send email with "Please Subscribe Me" in subject heading
Contact: tao@teachingartistsorganized.org

Chicago Teaching Artists’ Collective

Email list: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/teachingartist/
Contact: chicagoteachingartists@gmail.com

New England Consortium of Artist Educator Professionals

Email list: NECAP-on@mail-list.com
Contact: Frumie Selchen, Director, Arts Alliance of Northern New Hampshire ArtsAllianceNNH@cs.com