Born to Play

Common Sense Media says

Upbeat, imaginative soundtrack to Nick TV series.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

Stresses imagination. Uniqua, the female hippo in the series, is both feminine and unfettered on the playground (she cares about her friends' feelings and loves to get dirty).

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Not applicable

CD promotes Nick Jr.'s series of the same name.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that there's nothing really objectionable about this album except the smart-alecky sound of the vocals. Most of the songs celebrate imagination and fun adventures. Some talk about "being evil," which sounds odd on a kid's album, but it's done in a tongue-in-cheek manner.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

The Backyardigans is the a hugely successful Nickelodeon TV series featuring five characters (like Pablo the penguin and Tasha the hippo) who share a collective backyard that magically transports them to all sorts of fantastic realms -- like tropical rain forests and pirate ships. The third CD includes 22 songs from the show (including five from the one-hour movie, Tale of the Mighty Knights, which premiered on January 14th).

Is it any good?


This CD is no amateur effort. Evan Lurie, who writes most of the music for the series, honed his musical chops as an original member of the jazz group The Lounge Lizards. But, the album sounds a little studio-slick, and the lyrics are sometimes hard to pick out over the densely layered sounds. But, it's fun and fast-paced and every song celebrates a different musical style. One Celtic-flavored tune sounds a bit like preschoolers covering The Pogues. Plus, there's a wry adult sensibility woven in to some of the songs, like Cyndi Lauper's torchy "I'm the Lady in Pink."

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how unstructured playtime (and a healthy dose of imagination) can transport us to fantastic places. Put a sleeping bag and a flashlight in the basement and presto: scary story time! Can you think of something fun to do that you don't get to do every day?

Music details

Artist:The Backyardigans
Release date:January 22, 2008
Labels:Columbia, Nick Records
Genre:Children's Music
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

This review of Born to Play was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Parent of a 2 year old Written bySMKasprzak August 30, 2009

Not suitable for anyone with half a brain.

I must be the only person who cannot stand this show. Even my 2 1/2 year-old asked, "When does something happen?" I found the songs boring and annoying. The stories went nowhere.
Kid, 10 years old June 25, 2009

I love it

This is the best music ever!!!
What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
You are lying. there are no bad words!!!!!!!!!!!!


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