Top 50 Baby Music Albums
Humans are hardwired to love music. It holds a place in us that almost nothing else can reach. As anyone who has seen a grin of delight spread across a listening baby's face knows, there's just something simple and profound about our relationship with sound. And while it's true that the littlest babies don't much care what's playing, as time goes on, they start to listen, move, and sing along (suddenly making half our old music collection off limits for the next 16 years). Luckily we live in a fertile time for kids' music, with rereleases of classic recordings, scores of talented newcomers making charming records, and seemingly every third rocker from the '90s inspired to settle down and create great children's music of their own. Read More ↓
For Babble's first Top 50 Baby Music Albums, we chose recordings that could grow up with babies rather than becoming obsolete as soon as the babies are old enough to crawl away from the stereo. This also meant we stretched the definition of "baby" into the toddler years. Since you may be hearing some of these songs fifty, a hundred, a thousand times, we chose with parental sanity in mind and included a category for the best albums for adults that also work for babies. With music so intimately wrapped up with our emotional lives, we're sure to have made choices you'll disagree with, so feel free to nominate any gems we missed. -Colin Murphy
18 / 50
Time Out | Dave Brubeck
Why is an old jazz album about weird rhythms here? Because it’s cool, dad, and the saxophone and piano sound like they’re having a friendly conversation after hurrying through rush hour. This 1959 album has some of the most human instrumental tones in jazz, maybe expressly because of the experiments with odd time and meter going on behind the scenes that give the album its name.
“Blue Rondo a la Turk” and “Take Five” will probably be familiar to anyone with a passing knowledge of jazz, but even if they’re not it’s hard to resist their mellow charm. Paul Desmond’s breathy saxophone favors expressiveness over exhibitionism and interacts with Brubeck’s piano in cool, chatty phrases. But the whole mix is off-kilter and abstract enough that it keeps your mind from going down familiar paths, which is sometimes exactly what you need.
Get it from Amazon »