It’s almost hard to imagine, but children’s music hasn’t always been as wide ranging as it is today. However, there were some early pioneers, like the wonderful Ella Jenkins.
Widely recognized as "the first lady of children’s music," she was way ahead of her time in the 1950’s, when she began recording albums for children that introduced multi-culturalism and sounds from around the world. After decades of musical artistry, she received a Grammy lifetime acheivement award in 2004. cELLAbration! A Tribute to Ella Jenkins is a compilation featuring a variety of artists and styles from ragtime and folk, to country and salsa–all of which perfectly capture Ella’s approach to kid’s music. You’ll enjoy renditions from the likes of Pete Seeger, Tom Chapin and Sweet Honey in the Rock who fans of Jack’s Big Music Show will recognize.
You can sample all 18 tracks and order your own copy at Smithsonian Folkways.
cELLAbration! is the perfect way to introduce our own children to music that may have well been played for their own parents and grandparents. But maybe you shouldn’t tell them that part. After all, parents aren’t cool. -Amy