Classic Jazz Lullabies for Families. Available October 1!
If reggae is perfect music for babies and toddlers when they need to burn off some energy, than jazz is the perfect music for wind down time. Bob and I were listening to some jazz records a few weeks ago with our kids when I thought to myself, “Why don’t we listen to jazz more often with the girls?” We have a ton on vinyl! I’ve listened to a lot of jazz music in my life and I don’t think I play it often enough. I had two ways of developing a love of jazz when I was younger and it stems from 1. My love of musicals (especially from the 1930s and 1940s) and 2. My love of learning presidential history. It’s not so strange when you understand the interesting intersection of Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, John F. Kennedy, and Dean Martin that somehow got me listening to all the classic jazz musicians like Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday when I was a pre-teen. One of my favorite productions of musical theater I did as a kid was the rendition of the 1955 musical film “Guys and Dolls” (which premiered on Broadway first in 1950) and I still remember feeling goosebumps as an entire chorus of children sang, “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat”. It was awesome.
The Secret Mountain’s musical combination of books and CDs are always fun, interesting, and definitely timely with their latest (soon-to-be hit) Dreams Are Made for Children which is all about classic jazz. What I love so much about this CD is that these are not remakes of the hits by their well-known jazz singers, they are the original songs by singing legends in the golden age of jazz recorded by Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Nat King Cole, Sarah Vaughan, and many others including Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra. That is HUGE and I found this 12-song, 35 minute album had twelve wonderful and popular standards of jazz to showcase to your little ones. The album is titled from the song “Dreams Are Made for Children” by the amazing Ella Fitzgerald from a recording done in 1958 for the album, “Ella Swings Lightly”. This is a lovely song that shows her amazing vocal range (which spans three octaves!) and the purity of her tone.
To me, jazz represents a feeling of beauty and melancholy surrounded by talented musical scores and vocals that you can’t match in any other musical form. Jazz is considered “one of America’s original art forms” and was born out of the multicultural society of America in the 19th and 20th century. “Dreams Are Made for Children” has an impressive line-up of songs that had to have been put together out of the love for jazz and a nod to some of its greatest singers.
Interestingly, this jazz album filled with American singers was selected by Misja Fitzgerald Michel from France who studied jazz under François Jeanneau at the National Conservatory of Music in Paris. He later studied at the New School in New York with Jim Hall and Kenny Werner and began with Ravi Coltrane and many other musicians from the young New York scene. His first album, Live at the Villa, was recorded in 1998 and featured Scott Colley and Tony Rabeson. If you follow jazz festivals, you may just be able to see Michel perform!
It wouldn’t be The Secret Mountain album without a beautifully illustrated children’s book that accompanies the music and Ilya Green did a perfect job in her illustrations for “Dreams Are Made for Children”. Ilya Green is also from France and has written and illustrated books for established publishers like Didier Jeunesse and L’Atelier du Poisson Soluble. Her art is a great backdrop to each song and it’s fantastic to be able to share this artistic endeavor with my children. While Ella sang, “Dreams are made for children and a dream is a fairy tale”; this album is completely real and one that should be cherished in your musical collection with your family.
- Lullaby of Birdland by Sarah Vanghan
Lullaby in Blue by Debbie Reynolds, Eddie Fisher
Dreams Are Made for Children by Ella Fitzgerald
My Sleey Head (Go to Sleep) by Nat King Cole
Over the Rainbow by Judy Garland
Goodnight My Love by Sarah Vanghan
My Funny Valentine by Chet Baker
Hit the Road to Dreamland by Mel Tormé
Summertime by Peggy Lee
Looking for a Boy by Chris Conner
God Bless the Child by Billie Holiday
- Brahm’s Lullaby by Frank Sinatra
About The Secret Mountain: Award-winning stories and music for all eyes and ears. The Secret Mountain is a Montreal, Quebec company that is dedicated to creating quality children’s books, videos and audio recordings. I love their pairing of books with music that adds to the quality of a child’s learning. Check out their English (also available in French) titles and store here.
List Price: $ 16.95 (Currently on Sale through Amazon.com for $ 12.88!)