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Spring 2001

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Children's Music NEWSLETTER

    Posted 4 JUNE 2001

    "Start Dreaming!" Mr. Ray Our price: $13.99 | You save: $2.98
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    A subscriber from New Jersey loves Mr. Ray's "Start Dreaming": "My husband and I both find ourselves singing along and loving it! Our two boys (and their friends and cousins) know all the words, and get up and boogie when we play the CD. The songs are fun, easy to learn and sing along with, and each has an important message for kids."

    "Ray's House" Ray Munns Our price: $14.99 | You save: $2.98
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    If Eiffel 65's "Blue (Da Ba Dee)" is a Radio Disney megahit, then Ray Munns's "Ray's House" deserves bigtime airplay. A hip set of dance mixes, this CD is peppy and features remixes of Dido and Delerium tunes that'll put the 8-years-and-older crew in motion.

    "John Tesh Presents Classical Music for Babies (And Their Moms) Vol. 1" John Tesh Presents Our price: $12.32 | You save: $0.65
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    Mellow and high quality, this set of classical pieces is for mothers and their kids when calm is called for.


    "Mother Goose Songs & Rhymes" Disney Our price: $6.97
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    Little ones love rhymes and stories and repetition of the sort found in Mother Goose. This treatment by the Disney crew is heaps of fun. And a bargain!

    "Dancin' Tunes" Disney Our price: $6.97
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    "The Swim," "Y.M.C.A.," and "Born to Hand Jive" are just three of the grooving good-time selections that await you on "Dancin' Tunes." Here, familiar favorites are expertly done in Disney fashion.

    "Animal Rock" Disney Our price: $6.97
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    If your kids love animals, "Animal Rock" will delight them. It's fun and bright and never cloying for the adults--even on tunes such as "Rhinos! Rhinos! Can't Be Beat!"


    Music for Little People The California-based Music for Little People record label takes kids to musically distinct places, whether it's to Louisiana for a zydeco set such as "Choo Choo Boogaloo" or to Los Angeles (and beyond) for Los Lobos' "Papa's Dream." Here are some of the label's best releases.
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    Jazz for Kids Essentials If there's a "Mozart effect" that lights up the imaginations and the intellects of children with the intricate constructions of classical music, then there's undeniably a similar "jazz effect." Here are some great jazz CDs that kids will dance to and love, regardless of the music's learning quotient.
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    "Hot Hot Hot Dance Songs" Sesame Street Our price: $10.49 | You save: $0.48
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    The humorously attractive "Sesame Street" tunes, and the show's even more lovable furry characters, have provided entertainment and education to millions of children and their parents. But the characters have also become recording stars, sometimes attracting international superst

    NEW AND NOTABLE Posted 2 MAY 2001

    "Pokemon 3 [SOUNDTRACK]"
    Pokemon 3
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    Down the unending stream of Pokemon recordings comes "Pokemon 3," a pop-fueled follow-up to this year's "Totally Pokemon." It's a fun rave-up and great for the true-blue fans of Pikachu and his cohort.

    "Thomas' Songs & Roundhouse Rhythms"
    Thomas & Friends
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    Thomas the Tank Engine's day might have come and gone in the world of public television, but his stories and songs go on. This collection boasts favorite Sodor tracks and a tour of the island with a cast of Thomas's pals.

    "O Town"
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    Boy-band pop is "the" craze, even though some of the genre's biggest names are waiting until later in 2001 to release new albums. Check out O-Town, the fresh-faced stars of ABC's "Making the Band," and groove with what kids between 7 and 11 are loving so thoroughly.


    Sleep, Baby, Sleep
    Not much in the world is more gently poetic than a sleeping baby. But ask any parent of a young child and they'll tell you that infant slumber is not only poetic but pragmatic. The world's composers and songwriters have composed reams of music to help parents by easing the young ones into dreamland. Here are some splendid go-to-sleep recordings that will color the sleepy-time hours with soothing lullabies, lovely lyrics, global voices, and even comforting womb sounds.
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    Folk for Kids Essentials
    Woody Guthrie once noted, "By far my best audience for folk songs and ballads so far have been the kids. They look and they listen and they don't make a single sound. The story you are telling them in words goes through the minds like a newsreel, only plainer." Guthrie and his contemporaries seemed as drawn to tykes as they were to making music, making tracks, and making a fuss. Here are some of the signature children's recordings by artists who helped shape folk music.
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    Do you want some timeless recordings for children? Marlo Thomas, Pete Seeger, Tom Chapin, Vince Guaraldi, a flying car, a singing nun--they're all here on disc and ready for the kids' ears.
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    "Dragon Tunes"
    Dragon Tales
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    Wheezie, Zach, Ord, Cassie, and Emmy couldn't have created a better mix than "Dragon Tunes." This collection's bubblegum-pop energy is colorful enough to enliven any afternoon and have the kids dancing as they soak up the wisdom of their favorite dragons.

    "Disney's Greatest Vol. 1
    (Blisterpack)" Disney
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    The first of Disney's two-volume "Greatest" series is a smash. The 20 songs lean toward the 1980s and '90s, but also included are "Heigh-Ho," "I Wan'na Be Like You," and "Once Upon a Dream." These are the studio's most memorable tunes, hands down.

    "Disney's Greatest Vol. 2"
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    Again favoring the studio's most contemporary works, "Disney's Greatest, Vol. 2" also includes a bevy of classics--from "It's a Small World" to "Bare Necessities," "Winnie the Pooh," and the wonderful "I've Got No Strings." Another can't-miss collection.


    "Tenchi Muyo!"
    Original TV Soundtrack
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    The good thing about this "Tenchi Muyo!" collection is that the 13 songs stand well outside the hit anime series. It's pure Japanese pop, with string flourishes and uptempo flashes highlighting the English vocals.

    Original Soundtrack
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    Leave it to the world of animation to come up with the supercool soundtracks. Although released last September, the "Digimon" soundtrack has an all-ages energy that's cool enough to entertain Mom and Dad while mesmerizing the kids with motion, action, and adventure.


    "Kids, Cars & Campfires"
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    Red House Records presents this 14-song collection just in time for spring, with its road trips and other outings. The artists and songs are topnotch, including Greg Brown, Guy Davis, and Suzzy Roche. Every car with kids needs a few bars of "Yankee Doodle" and "Froggie Went A-Courtin."

    "Yellow Bus"
    Justin Roberts
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    A customer from Illinois loves Justin Roberts's "Yellow Bus": "In the three days since I bought this disc, I have in turn been unable to get 'Rocketship,' 'Willy Was a Whale,' and 'Tickle My Toes' out of my head. I find myself singing them to myself at work, and just let me say I'm glad I'm not the only parent of a small one in my office! Whether you're a kid or a grandparent or in between, Justin's new album is a treasure. Buy it. You'll be glad."

Andrew Bartlett,editor ©, 2001 and ncdn-associates of,bn,tower,cdnow

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