New Orleans Playground
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there's absolutely nothing offensive or objectionable here. There is, however, plenty of good music filled with positive energy. See if your kid -- or you -- can keep his or her feet still!
What's the story?
With so much of the airwaves dominated by self-absorbed pop divas, detached rockers, and rappers clutching baggy pants all armed with messages that are either totally inappropriate for young children or absolutely indecipherable, it's good to know that musical alternatives for young kids do exist. One of those alternatives is NEW ORLEANS PLAYGROUND from Putumayo Kids, a division of Putumayo World Music. It's the eighth album in an award-winning Playground series dedicated to introducing kids to different cultures through fun and upbeat music. (Note: A portion of the CD's proceeds will be donated to the Louisiana Children's Museum to help expand its music exhibit.) This album features well-known New Orleans artists such as Clifton Chenier, whose Cajun-zydeco sounds bop their way through \"Choo Choo Ch'Boogie.\"
Is it any good?
Among the many highlights on New Orleans Playground are Charmaine Neville (of the renowned musical family) performing her highly personal version of the classic parade song "Second Line" with hip-shaking sass, and Fats Domino tickling and bouncing the ivories -- as only he can -- on "Whole Lotta Lovin'." Many of the songs may not have been written or performed with children in mind, but the jumpy boogie-woogie and beautifully simple lyrics are timeless, ageless, and definitely engaging.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about which songs make you want to dance. You can also discuss the different kinds of instruments: Tune into the horn and the piano and see if you can identify it the next time it's played in the song. You can even encourage your kids to "play" along with the musicians with their own "air" instruments.