Remy Zero "Belong" from "The Golden Hum"
I am still amazed that Remy Zero did not make it big. Their two biggest claims to fame were the theme song to Smallville (the series used the first single from "The Golden Hum" as it theme) and that the singer dated Alyssa Milano. There are a number of tunes from The Golden Hum that could have made the cut for this list, from "Perfect Memory" (about a son remembering the times spent with his father, who has since passed away) to "Save Me" (the Smallville theme).
Dr. Dog "California" from "Takers or Leavers"
Our lil' girl saw Dr. Dog live last year after falling in love with the first track on their "Easy Beat" record. We were all excited the day this six song gem arrived in the mailbox. From the first moment this CD spun around inside our car, "California" became a favorite. Our daughter was singing the chorus after the first listen and requested this song over and over again, every time we had a drive to make! Another awesome song from Philadelphia's finest, Dr. Dog.
Lyle Lovett "Fiona" from "Road to Ensenada"
What a fun song this is. It is one of my eight year old niece's favorite tunes. She just saw Lyle Lovett at the Kimmel Center in Philly last month, her first real concert. This one is for her.
The Kids of Sesame Street "Somebody Come and Play" from 35 Years on The StreetOne of my wife's favorites and another great Sesame Street moment. This track (and album) was played often in our little Peugeot as we drove around the villages of Provence, with mother and daughter singing it as a duet.
Dizzy Gillespie "Salt Peanuts" from "Charlie Parker - Yardbird Suite"
Fans of OWTK will probably know how much of a Charlie Parker fan I am and how interested in Bird and jazz our girl was from an early age (thanks to books like Charlie Parker Plays Be-Bop and Looking For Bird). Why it never occured to me that this Dizzy song is an absolutely perfect way to get your kids into listening to jazz is beyond me. The only lyrics are "Salt Peanuts, Salt Peanuts!" and it is very fun to hear those lyrics being sung and played on trumpet. Dizzy alternates between singing and playing this part on trumpet - you can hear the instrument "saying" Salt Peanuts, Salt Peanuts.
John Prine "My Darlin' Hometown" from "Fair and Square"
A beautiful song about falling in love all over again with the place where you live, were born, raised, or visited once and long to return - if only in your dreams. This album is great, from start to finish. I was very close to recommending "Clay Pigeons", "Crazy as a Loon", or "She is My Everything". Virtually every story song on this complete and nearly-perfect album is family friendly.
If you would like to purchase any of these fine selections for your own music library, please visit your local independent record shop (should one still exist in your town). If you prefer to purchase online or digitally, click on either the Amazon.com or iTunes link to the right (you may need to scroll down a bit). By doing so, you will be helping to support this site (which you love deeply, we know). We will owe you a big hug if we ever cross paths. Thanks in advance!
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