Friday, December 02, 2005

Remember the turntable? Kid records from the 40s and 50s - ready for your iPod!

When my sister and I were six, a turn table and a stack of records could entertain us for hours. Since our parents were trying to raise us TV free, naturally I thought of records as ear TV and the stereoscope that our great grand aunt kept out to entertain us got called the old-fashioned TV.

Before we discovered the Smithsonian collection of folk music and the Beatles (I plead pre-adolescence) one of our favorite records was Tubby the Tuba. Tubby was on an old 78 our mother listened to as a child, and each side lasted only a few minutes, but we loved that recording more than any other in our children's collection. Tubby taught us about the orchestra, how melodies work, and how to separate the sound of a bassoon from the sound of a flute just by listening. He also gave me the notion that musical instruments had feelings, and that violins had an attitude - two things I still believe in.

I’ve been looking for a digital version of Tubby for a few years, and our good friend Sid helped find him for me through the Kiddie Records site. Thank you Sid! To download and listen, enter Kiddie Records Weekly 2005 and scroll down to September. You can either download the files as mp3 or as bittorrent files.

Every week Kiddie Records releases a new download and Peter and the Wolf is coming up in January - another excellent recording. And if you find any of your favorites, let me know. We've got Caroline sitting in front of the iPod these days and she has already started to say "more Tuggy da Tuba!"

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Ellen said...

amazing! I could remember the very lines as they came out - 30? years later...

Karla said...

What fun! I never had Tubby the Tuba, but do have fond memories of various 60s children's records and The Grand Canyon Suite (a favorite because of the donkey aspect).
While I don't have kids to get things for, I am rather sad that the Czech children's books of my childhood (which were still sold around 1990) are no longer on the market.

Julia said...

"On the Trail" is my favorite of those suites for sure! Especially the violin credenza at the beginning, which I thought was fun to try to pick up by ear.

Karla said...

I can't say I ever tried to play anything from the Grand Canyon Suite on my violin... now I'm wondering why. Perhaps because I was most enamored of it when too young to know I'd ever have a violin. But also, I never figured out how to get creative on violin until after I stopped taking lessons. Piano was easier in that respect. Just play some arpeggios and start going wild.