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Music Thursdays: New From Raffi & Lindsay Monroe – “Nursery Rhymes For Kinder Times”

Welcome to the Music Thursdays segment! Each week here on Geek Alabama, Music Thursdays will feature music related content. Music Thursdays will feature an artist or band and their latest song and / or music video. People love music, and we here at Geek Alabama love featuring artists and bands!

Craft Recordings announces Nursery Rhymes for Kinder Times, a brand-new release from the world-renowned children’s entertainer, Raffi, and the award-winning singer and songwriter, Lindsay Munroe. As the title suggests, this imaginative collection of songs offers a fresh, whimsical, and tender take on classic nursery rhymes, including “Three Blind Mice” (re-imagined as “Three Kind Mice”), “Ring Around the Rosie” (“Ring Around Sweet Roses”), and “London Bridge Is Falling Down” (“London Rain Is Falling Down”).

Set for release on May 6, Nursery Rhymes for Kinder Times is currently available for pre-order on CD and digital, while listeners of all ages can stream “Three Kind Mice” today HERE.

The concept behind Nursery Rhymes for Kinder Times came from Pam Gittleman, a preschool music teacher of more than 20 years and a member of the 2020/2021 Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative. In her classroom, Gittleman noticed that her young students were increasingly unfamiliar with traditional nursery rhymes. “It came as no surprise that young parents, teachers, and caregivers were avoiding these rhymes because so many of them are inappropriate and outdated for today’s children,” she says.

And so, Gittleman sought to do better for younger generations by revitalizing classic rhymes with updated lyrics that not only nurture a sense of caring and compassion, but also promote social and emotional intelligence. “While you’ll recognize many of the beloved characters from traditional nursery rhymes, these are not the same rhymes that our parents and grandparents recited,” Gittleman explains. “Rather than three blind mice whose tails get cut off and a baby that falls out of a tree ‘cradle and all,’ there are now three kind mice who help each other get some cheese, and a baby in a cradle who is visited by a loving brother and sister.”

Gittleman received enthusiastic feedback from her students, their parents, and her fellow educators, but she was eager to share her work on a wider level—and she had the ideal creative partner in mind. “I could think of no one with a broader reach as a voice for kindness and fun than Raffi,” she declares. A longtime fan of the artist’s music and activism, Gittleman adds that Raffi’s Child Honouring Principles (which include Emotional Intelligence, Respectful Love, and Conscious Parenting) were “consistent with the underlying research I had studied in creating my rhymes. It was clear we were on the same page when it comes to what is important to support the development of young children.”

Raffi was equally enthralled by Gittleman’s idea and set to work to bring her lyrics to life, serving as the album’s composer, producer, and vocalist. While many of the updated stories on Nursery Rhymes for Kinder Times already had simple, well-known melodies, others were quite short or had no melody at all. In order to turn the rhymes into singable songs, Raffi wrote original music wherever it was needed. The artist also enlisted his protégé, Lindsay Munroe, to perform alongside him on every track—her bright, crystal-clear soprano complementing his familiar, soothing voice. Additionally, two of Munroe’s children lent their vocals to several of the songs.

To build a warm and enchanting musical world, Raffi incorporated a broad range of instrumentation—including the harp, the ukulele, trumpets, and even a bassoon. The result is an imaginative collection of catchy and engaging songs that children and parents can enjoy throughout the day—from the joyful melodies of “Baa Baa Bright Sheep” and “Jack and Jill” to the soothing sounds of “Rock-A-Bye Baby.” Perhaps most importantly, each song captures the essence of what it means to be kind, empathetic, and grateful.

“These songs offer a breakthrough—a re-visioning of old and outdated nursery rhymes,” says Raffi. “I loved working with these updated lyrics and creating some new melodies for them. Lindsay Munroe’s voice has a charm all its own and her daughters’ voices add to the joy of this album.”

Munroe adds, “It was such a joy recording these charming, new nursery rhymes with Raffi. They promote kindness, empathy, and gratitude, and I’m happy to lend my voice to such a wonderful album. My daughters Emma and Mem were thrilled to sing on some of the songs too. We had such fun creating this album and I hope you enjoy it and sing along!”

Nursery Rhymes for Kinder Times tracklist:

1. Three Kind Mice
2. Diddle Diddle Dumpling
3. Sing A Song Of Six Cents
4. Ring Around Sweet Roses
5. Rock-A-Bye Baby
6. Jack And Jill
7. Hickory Dickory Dock
8. Baa Baa Bright Sheep
9. Humpty Dumpty
10. London Rain Is Falling Down
11. Eeny Meeney Miney Mo
12. Old Mother Hubbard
13. This Little Piggy
14. Hey Little Diddle
15. There Was A Nice Lady

 

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