What I Have in My Car Now

February 1, 2012

I can’t take anymore booty music…in the car. Diego, who will be 5 soon, listens to every single lyric now. I don’t want to explain what Kanye means when he says he will have “alien sex” with Katy Perry. No thanks. My good friend Howard recently recommended some music for kids on his blog. This was so helpful and I now avoid a potential disaster by not trying to switch the station as David Guetta mixes what Turns (Him) On. I decided I will make our drives to school and to Tae Kwon Do kid-friendly, happy and educational.
Here is what I have in the car now…

Classic. Good old music about “love” as Diego says. The first five songs in the album, “Love Me Do”, “From Me to You”, “She Loves You”, “I Want to Hold Your Hand”, and “Can’t Buy Me Love” are the ones we play most often. Nothing better than introducing The Beatles at a young age…

Diego loves The Beach Boys! He was first introduced to their music at a friend’s house during a play date. My friend Diana is super creative and fun. She had the kids pretend to “surf” on couch cushions on the floor and their imaginations went wild while they listened to “Surfin’ USA”! I thought about how my brother loved The Beach Boys as a kid and it brought back nice memories. In the car, it’s fun to explain to Diego why “Daddy took the T-bird away”.

Nothing better than teaching your child about your roots while on the road. Jose loves to listen to rancheras on weekend mornings and this awesome CD/DVD plays on your car screen when parked. It is hilarious to listen to Diego try to sing, “Grabé en la penca de un maguey tu nombre…” and Santi loves to do the Mexican grito that mariachis often wail…at 12 months! Listening to Vicente on a regular basis tunes the kids into Mexican music that their grandparents listen to naturally as a part of all our lives.

More Spanish music! Thanks to my friend Maritza, I now have this in CD format for the car! We had this on our iPod and it was so popular with Diego and our Spanish-speaking friends during play dates at home. My friend Ofelia taught me so many of these songs when we were kids growing up. These songs are very meaningful to me as it reminds me of my childhood and there is nothing better than sharing “Brinca la Tablita” or “La Rueda de San Miguel” with my boys. Diego thinks it is so funny that “Arroz con Leche” wants to marry someone: his favorite song on the CD hands down. Santi, now at 14 months, can say “ba ba bamba” when “La Bamba” is playing.

Finally, Music Together. I found the class a little cheesy (even for me)! But Santi loved it! When you sign up for this developmentally appropriate early childhood music program, you receive a CD and a DVD. Playing the music in the car, to and from class (or on route to any place), ties in and reinforces what the child learned in class. Some of these songs I had never heard before and then you have some classics like, “She’ll be Coming ‘Round the Mountain” and new ones (and cultural!) like “Palo, Palo”, our favorite.
I would love to know other suggestions for our next drive! What are you all listening to? What seems to work or not work? Trying to explain Adele’s heartbreak was a bit tricky…and if it is true that Jay-Z has dropped the B word now that he has a little one, maybe we can give him a try! xoxo

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  • Reply Nancy February 6, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    I cannot address how much i hate those lyrics in those new songs, i avoid those radio stations as much as i can and for the past 6 years I have been listening to Christian music stations like K-love 94.3 and my girls love it, they pretty much know all the lyrics and it makes me happy to hear them singing inspirational songs that talk about God.

  • Reply Yvette S February 8, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    I agree! I monitor what I play in my car too especially when I have the kiddos. I don’t care for some of those famous “pop” artists because in the end they don’t care about the message they are sending out there it’s all about what will be the next “big hit” and how much $ they can make. I do allow some radio to play sometimes but as I immediately know that it isn’t a good selection I change it right away.

  • Reply Bertha February 8, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I don’t turn on the radio unless it’s a CD, if Daniela is with me. Right now, all she wants to watch is Fresh Beat Band on Nick, their CD came out on 1.31, guess what I did for lunch that day? Went to Target got her the CD and suprised her after I pikced her from P-K. She was so excited! I also got concert tickets to when they’re in town next month. We to play Spanish CD’s as much as I can, we have most of the Fisher Price CD’s in Spanish. Dora cd? got it. Sesame Street CD? Got it. Winnie the Pooh? Got it. I love kids’ music! I leave the booty shakin’ music for when I’m alone in the car..

  • Reply Howard February 8, 2012 at 3:52 pm

    Thanks for the shout out Betty. Love the blog and glad that the little guy is getting some good music as well. As spring apporaches remember Stevie Wonder and Songs in the Key of Life!!

  • Reply Caro Monroy February 8, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Great recommendations girls! In my car we listen to a lot of Andrea Boceli ( his new Christmas album and his LIVE concert in Central Park;-)) and my girls love the Phantom of the Opera CD a lot. And let’s not forget Justin Beiber, even I like his songs and he is stil pretty PG.

    • Reply Jose February 8, 2012 at 9:45 pm

      Hey what about “I love you like a love song baby”? He belts that one out… Not a bad start for a crush!!!

  • Reply Yvette S February 13, 2012 at 1:41 pm

    Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, Adele those are some that are allowed. Betty, you have to listen to Lia belt out some Adele. My baby is not a singer but she tries.

  • Reply Tiz Lambert February 16, 2012 at 8:32 pm

    I’m all about Sirius Radio…love “Coffee House”. Also, Olivia’s music class gives fantastic CDs with each unit. They can be purchased at if you aren’t enrolled in a class.

  • Reply Heather February 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    So agree! Even though I don’t have kids yet…I always tell my students to try to listen to different genres of music. They are so into rap and hip hop. I am not a fan of the music today. I enjoy the sweet lyrics of the past.

  • Reply Se Habla Español « My Friend Betty Says… March 1, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    […] 3. Music Cumbias, Salsa, Rancheras- all of it! Just play in the background as much as you can. I have a few Spanish CDs in the car as I previously wrote about. Check them out here. […]

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