Better Music for Cooler Kids: Peaceful Tunes

Today's guest post comes from Christina Childress, the young mom of triplets who was featured here last week.

As a new mom, one thing that makes me cringe about having little ones is the bore-you-to-tears "soothing lullabies" made for babies and the impending doom of Hannah Montana, The Jonas Brothers and any other god-forsaken programming on the Disney Channel. I'm not going to deprive my kids of something they love, but I AM going to try and at least introduce them to good quality music first and hope it sticks. One opportunity we have as young moms is to try and make sure our kids aren't dorks, right? Take advantage of your age and your still thriving connection to youth culture by introducing your kiddos to quality music instead of the Disney-bop crap that all their friends with 40-year-old parents will be listening to. They'll thank you for it in high school when their friends finally discover Sufjan Stevens and they can be all, "I totally listened to him since preschool. Oh, and its pronounced Soof-yan." And, if they still can't resist the ever-so-tempting siren songs from the likes of Miley Cyrus, you can always invest in a pair of these.

Here are Christina's favorite peaceful music picks that encourage good taste in music:

Brian Eno's Music for Airports

My husband told me I have to give him credit for this one. It's his favorite album ever and the first thing he played for our babies when we brought them home. He loves it so much, in fact, that he asked if we could hang a framed picture of Brian Eno in the nursery. Um, no. But play his album during nap time, yes. Originally released in 1978, Music for Airports was the very first ambient album ever made. The write-up on musthear.com says this about the album: "Airports are the modern point of departure and they are places where reunions occur and separations begin as people move back and forth. Airports are also places of duty-free commerce, blaring announcements, boredom and tension. So [Eno] took all of this into consideration: a work that would reassure people who might possibly be flying to their fiery death, that would give a spirit of hope and trepidation and calm all mixed together. Any new parent would agree that raising children can, in certain moments, be likened to the sensation of flying to your fiery death, yes? So not only is this album a favorite in our house for nap time, it also helps the pops and me to take a deep breath and keep moving forward. Our personal favorite version of this album can be found here.

Sigur Ros, Takk...

In college I would listen to Sigur Ros during my three-hour drawing and sculpture classes. This post-rock band creates absolutely gorgeous music with a traditional 4-piece band setup along with strings and brass instruments, with vocals sung in Icelandic and 'Hopelandic', a made-up language. Their songs range from slow to sprightly, calm to energetic. All are lovely and worth listening to. [ED note: This video is awesome.]

Iron & Wine, Our Endless Numbered Days

I have yet to meet someone who doesn't enjoy Iron & Wine. Not so much a band as the project of musician Sam Beam, the earlier albums like this one are track after track of simple folky acoustic guitar and Sam's soft raspy voice. It'll soothe you and your baby right to sleep.

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Also check out Christina's picks for cooler dance music, and cooler albums for kids.

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