Rhythm Train

Music review by
Jessica Dawson, Common Sense Media
Rhythm Train Music Poster Image
Fun, interactive introduction to world music for little ones

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

Fun, positive messages about music and having fun, all around the world.

Positive Role Models & Representations

The fact that the album incorporates multi-cultured music and "travels" around the world is a great way for kids to learn to appreciate other languages and cultures.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this CD is a collaborative effort that takes kids on a journey around the world to learn, enjoy, and appreciate different kinds of music. Chad Smith of the Red Hot Chili Peppers shows his softer side, and legend Dick Van Dyke struts his stuff on this album for kids.

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What's the story?

Voted one of MTV's most favorite children's albums ever, RHYTHM TRAIN takes kids on a cool train ride around the world by featuring music from Australia, Africa, Mexico, and the U.S. of A. Leslie Bixler (Moon Food) teams up again with Red Hot Chili Pepper's drummer Chad Smith and legendary actor-turned-pirate-rapper Dick Van Dyke (D.V.D.) to make her second children's album a fun, interactive musical adventure about didgeridoos, roly-poly guacamole, tutu-wearing pirates, and dinosaurs who really like to eat.

Is it any good?

Seriously, put together a legendary drummer and loveable Bert from Mary Poppins, and you know you're gonna have fun. Leslie Bixler and her two partners-in-fun are climbin' aboard the Rhythm Train, a groovalicious ride through elephants in Africa, birds in Australia, and guacamole in Mexico. From bluegrass to rock, and rap to folk, the songs give kids a lesson in world culture and music, under the guise of being silly and having a whole lotta fun. Smith sings a sweet ode to trains with his son on "Cole's Train," and Van Dyke is a funny pirate on "Ballet Dancing." The entire album is fun, and encourages kids to listen, dance, explore, laugh, and learn.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Chad Smith and Dick Van Dyke began their careers in different ways; now they have come together to make a children's album. Do you think the fact that they are already well-known (at least to your mom and dad) makes this CD more interesting or more likely to be listened to? Why? Did you even know who Dick Van Dyke was before this album? Do you think anyone can sing on a children's album?

  • There are lots of instruments and sounds here. Do you like all the different kinds of music? Which one is your favorite? Why? What sounds do you hear? What makes rock music different from country, or rap different from Australian music?

Music details

For kids who love to explore

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