Asteroids
Sunny pop from the Asteroids Galaxy Tour. No, really.

We are huge proponents of quality kids/family music in our house. However, I also celebrate adding a few adult songs to your kiddie-centric playlist.  Specifically, appealing to your child’s blossoming music tastes while appeasing your need for some songs that are NOT about the ABCs and 123s. Below, is a summer-tuned, shuffle-friendly playlist of music that wasn’t written with kids in mind but that Maia and I thoroughly enjoy bobbing our heads to. Yes, it is slightly biased to my music tastes, but I promise this summer-riffic playlist will have you smiling too!

Basement Jaxx - We love blasting this electronic duo’s greatest hits. Their music is full of bubbly, fast-paced grooves with a decade-plus songbook to handpick toddler-friendly grooves from. Maia’s favorite is the chant-like “Bingo Bango.” New summer-themed single “”Raindrops” is also rising up our charts as well.

The Asteroids Galaxy Tour - This Danish band has several songs on their new album “Fruit” that are made for warm summer days. Our family favorite is “The Golden Age,” where lead vocalist Mette Lindberg’s vocals are mixed with a unique combination of rat-pack era jazz and hip-hop beats.

Passion Pit
Boston boys make it big

Sonny J – This English singer/songwriter/ DJ/ producer has a year-old album full of songs that are sure to get the family moving. The Jackson 5-meets-Fatboy Slim track “Can’t Stop Moving” is the true summertime standout on this sampledelic album. The video itself is worth a view too, recalling 70′s era “Sesame Street” musical numbers.

Passion Pit – One of the biggest breakthrough acts of the spring,  this Cambridge, Mass-based band have a few songs from their new Manners LP that are perfect summertime jams. The surefire hit is the synthy, beat-driven “Sleepyhead” with its  sing-along chorus.

Madonna - Don’t hate. We’ve got mad love for Madonna in my house. We have been playing Maia a lot of the newer stuff. “Do you like to boogie-woogie?” is one of her favorite lines. And no,  “Justify My Love” is not on the playlist.

A few more warm weather-inspired recommendations that Maia seems to have taken to, and that I am more than happy to play if the lyrics are appropo:

Ting Tings – (See previous post)

The Little Ones - L.A. indie pop (and “Yo Gabba Gabba” guests)

Phoenix – French pop/rock band

Annie – Norwegian electropop singer

Miike Snow – Swedish pop/rock/electronica band

Cut Copy – Australian synthpop band

Goldfrapp - British electronic music group

Backseat Fun!
All smiles in the backseat with Dad on the decks


“A few people have mentioned the childlike, sing-along quality in our songs. I think it’s because my voice isn’t too high or too low, and the lyrics have that chanty quality, so anyone can sing along to them. Or maybe we’ve just got the brains of four-year-olds!” – Katie White, leader singer of The Ting Tings. (As quoted in The Guardian).

They call me quiet, but I'm a riot.

Well said Katie! From the age of 1.5, their “childlike, singalong” tunes instantly had my daughter Maia’s head bobbing. I think the first lyrics she learned were the chanting calls of “the drums, the drums” from their hit single “Great DJ.”  Today, she enjoys imitating the rock star moves of this electronic/pop/rock band.

Compromised of lead singer Katie White and drummer/guitar player/programmer Jules De Martino, The Ting Tings debut release “We Started Nothing” was released a few years ago. Despite the fact that it is not your traditional family album, it will be a welcome addition to your car rides.

The Ting Tings have dabbled in kindie music as well, including a cover of “Happy Birthday” by Altered Images that was performed on “Yo Gabba Gabba” late last year. Our daughter’s favorite YouTube video is a mashup of Brobee singing “Party in My Tummy” with their hit single “That’s Not My Name.”

So, throw some tunes written for an adult audience in the iPod mix, knowing the little ones will also enjoy. (Disclaimer “Shut Up & Let Me Go” may be a skipper for impressionable minds.)

Check out the “Party in My Tummy” / “That’s Not My Name” mashup below.