Saturday, April 13, 2013


Between friends and family, I have a number of babies coming into my life right now. I’m going to be an auntall over the place. Which means, I’ve been looking into a lot of baby-related things lately. Given my love of music, lullabies have been on the list.

Who doesn’t enjoy being sung to sleep?

I’ve gone through periods in my life where I have listened to music every night as I’ve drifted off. I learned early on that I had to choose my bedtime music wisely. Tried the Broadway soundtrack to Footloose for a week once. Which I guess kind of worked. I was pretty tired after I got up and danced around the room for a half hour. 

However, I don’t think anyone’s going to let me watch their babies if I get them all riled up like that. So, I’ve been looking into songs of a more soothing variety.

I like some of the classics, but of course a few of them are kind of scary.

Rock-a-Bye Baby” ends with the baby plummeting from a tree tops and possibly being crushed by a splintering cradle. Sleep tight, kid. The fact that I’ve seen “Itsy-Bitsy Spider” listed as a lullaby is bizarre to me. Who falls into peaceful slumber while thinking about spiders? I know it’s a surefire way to keep me burning the midnight oil. Or, you know, maybe we can just sing about a little girl drowning to death right before the eyes of a little boy who wants to save her, but can't swim. And then talk about how her decaying body fertilized plants. And how he fell in love with her little sister and forgot all about her. That'll give the kiddies sweet dreams.

Possibly my favorite verse from this version of the little ditty is:
In my dreams she still doth haunt me
Robed in garlands soaked in brine
Though in life I used to hug her
Now she's dead, I draw the line
Gotta teach the children boundaries, right?

Still, even more than twinkling stars and golden slumbers of the not-so-blood-curdling classics, I like some of the modern lullaby-ish tunes. Here are a few of my favorites:

If you'll notice, not an arachnid or horrible death among them.

How about you? Any suggestions for my coming nieces and nephews?


  1. I one had an annoying, noisy roommate, so fell asleep to my walkman every night. I'd wake up with the headphones tangled around my neck or poking into my back. But music can be very soothing.

  2. Me singing anything would give the child nightmares. :)

  3. The ones I know are mostly in french...
    My favorite might be 'Le renard et le loup': The fox and the wolf.
    The narrator tell the story of a fox and a wolf she met near the stream behind her house and how they were about to jump at each other's throat until she befriended them both. I'm not entirely sure it's a lullaby, since the end seems to suggest she is singing to a lover rather than a child, but I still kind of consider it as such.