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songs for stray children

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  • songs for stray children

    I often get children in my audience. They come for dinner with their families, sometimes extended. I've thought about playing "Teddy Bears Picnic" because it's a 'kid song', but…

    It's just the tiniest bit creepy and

    The kids seem content (occasionally enthused) about what I'm already singing. Really, the best adult songs are no more complicated than kids songs as a rule: I think a kid understands "Summertime" about as well as anyone else does.

    What do you guys do for or to the wee tykes in your audience?
    Last edited by pogo97; 06-28-2018, 12:08 PM.
    There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

  • #2
    Two words ... Justin Beiber 😅
    Cheers Steve

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    • #3
      Yeah, I'm thinking Shawn Mendes, Bieber, The Weeknd, Drake and so on. The tiniest kids all have iPads and are wired right into mainstream Pop music. Just realized that all those major artists are Canadian, and all from the 416 or 905 area codes - interesting. Other than Pop, their parents would remember Fred Penner, so if and when I attempt The Cat Came Back, the parents clap along. I have also had parents ask if I know anything their kids would know, and then they list the four artists mentioned previously...

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      • #4
        The Ramones did a version of the old Spiderman cartoon tv show song. I've pulled that out on occasion. The adults love the nostalgia factor
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        • #5
          Originally posted by Shaster View Post
          … The Cat Came Back, the parents clap along.
          Speaking of creepy. I don't suppose Fred Penner did it, but one possible last verse [I suspect this is original] plays on the rather old expression that food "came back" if it gave you heartburn. This is from Trout Fishing in America: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpsiuiofrRk

          And she took him to the butcher when the butcher wasnt around,
          and dropped him in the hopper when the butcher wasnt around.
          Well, the cat let out, with a horrible shriek,
          and the town's meat tasted furry for a week,
          but the cat came back, the very next day;
          thought he was a gonner, but the cat came back,
          cause he wouldnt stay away.

          The great version, though is this NFB short:





          There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

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          • #6
            Sheesh. Bieber? I think not. Not in the script. I'll just play "Honeysuckle Rose" and pretend it's about flower and bees and stuff rather than cunilingus.
            There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

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            • #7
              I do a mini-set for small children [fortunately I have not had to in quite some time] which includes High Hopes, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, The Baby Tree, Three Widdle Fishies, Swingin' on a Star, Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah...and typically I would do these on ukelele, which small children seem to perceive as a more 'fun' instrument and less imposing than a big, black acoustic guitar.
              Last edited by daddymack; 06-30-2018, 10:45 AM.
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              • #8
                Even Fred's original version of The Cat Came Back is a bit off the wall. It's pretty violent in places.

                Another song the parents might remember is The Muppet song Rainbow Connection. I did this song a few years ago backing a grandmother and her granddaughter singing it. I also heard a fellow doing it at an open mic and it brought the house down. I guess again, the parents would remember it. Pretty cool changes to boot.

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                • #9
                  A medley of kid show themes…

                  I know (and quite like) the Teletubbies, Blues Clues and the Backyardigans which all had excellent music. But that's because my kids were that age at that time.


                  There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

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                  • #10
                    We generally don't play for children here in retirement-haven. I'm not complaining, I've been dong it since I was 40 and it's a good market, short gigs, decent pay, and less demanding than when I was in a top40 band.

                    We did a "Luau" at a huge, ocean-side RV park and one of the patrons brought her little granddaughter up to the stage and she requested Nae Nae, and was so disappointed when we didn't know how to play it.

                    I went to YouTube and decided if I have to play Nae Nae, it's time to retire

                    YMMV

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                    Bob "Notes" Norton
                    Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com
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                    • #11
                      Star Wars theme, Peanuts theme, also Baby Elephant Walk- that one gets parents bouncing their babies in their arms.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by pinkfloydcramer61 View Post
                        Star Wars theme, Peanuts theme, also Baby Elephant Walk- that one gets parents bouncing their babies in their arms.
                        Hmmmmm -- Henry Mancini : I loved "Moon River" as a child and play it already, and then there's Pink Panther …
                        There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

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                        • #13
                          It's been years but a friend and I were in the park and I had my guitar with me. Two ladies were hiking or some such with a kindergarten class or brownie troop and they asked us to sing. I thought for a moment and then launched into "My Old Man" by the Smothers Brothers, asking the kids between verses what their dads did. I dunno if it's still appropriate to refer to your dad as your "old man," and these days some kids don't have dads (some even have two moms but that's another story) but it went over well back then.
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                          • #14
                            My daughter, who is 17 and completely awesome (self-evaluation) says that the Teletubbies are also awesome. So that's that.
                            There is more than one way to do this. Notes Norton

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                            • #15
                              This Old Man? The one who played knick knack on your thumb? Even in kindergarten I thought he was a dodgy character..

                              Actually, a lot of those kiddie songs were disturbingly ageist (something I am more sensitive to nowadays). There was an old lady who swallowed a fly..

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                              • daddymack
                                daddymack commented
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                                I don't know why she swallowed that fly...

                              • pogo97
                                pogo97 commented
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                                perhaps…

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