I Wanna Play

Music review by
Amy Weaver, Common Sense Media
I Wanna Play Music Poster Image
Grammy winner delivers lessons with humor.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

"At Your Library" invites kids to discover the joys of reading. Another songs talks about having the courage to ask questions: "You've got to ask if you don't know/you've got to ask, that's how you grow."

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the 12 songs on this album are original tunes guaranteed to make kids chuckle. Grown-up ears will likely enjoy the clever lyrics and diverse musical styles and inspirations (Caribbean and Cajun among others). It's also a Parent's Choice Gold Medal winner.

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What's the story?

I WANNA PLAY, the latest creation of legendary children's musician and storyteller, Bill Harley, takes kids' music beyond the realm of the merely cute and upbeat. Grammy-award winner Harley has been called the \"Mark Twain of contemporary kids' music,\" no doubt because of his folksy wisdom and gently satiric slant. Songs like \"Barbie's Head Is Missing\" and \"You've Got to Ask\" tell stories from a child's point of view, with both humor and sympathy. After all, what little brother wouldn't panic after realizing the dog ate Barbie's head after he \"innocently\" removed it (\"it's not like she had brains anyway\").

Is it any good?

Though the tone is at times a bit earnest (especially in "At Your Library"), it is balanced out by the offbeat humor and gentle irony of the rest of the album.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about some of the themes of the album. Are there times when you are afraid to ask a question for fear of seeming stupid? Do you feel comfortable speaking up at school and asking for explanations when you're not sure? What about at home?

Music details

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