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Dream Songs Night Songs: From Belgium to Brazil
Dream Songs Night Songs: From Belgium to Brazil
by Various Artists

This award-winning recording will send your little one off to dreamland with lullabies from all around the world, sung in the language of origin. Male and female voices offer lovely, warm lead vocals and harmonies, supported by a highly skilled group of musicians playing more than 30 different instruments, many of which will be new sounds for you and your little one.

Age: 1 Year-olds | Title: Dream Songs Night Songs: From Belgium to Brazil  |  Artist: Various Artists  |  Label: Secret Mountain

This award-winning recording will send your little one off to dreamland with lullabies from all around the world, sung in the language of origin. Male and female voices offer lovely, warm lead vocals and harmonies, supported by a highly skilled group of musicians playing more than 30 different instruments, many of which will be new sounds for you and your little one.

The lullabies are derived from Indonesia, Brazil, Senegal, Belgium, Algeria, Israel, Cameroon, Occitania, Canada, Germany, Seychelles, Italy, and the United States. With only one song in English, the majority of a listener's experience will be the tempo, beat, and sounds. The library of instruments used is vast; the more commonly heard instruments are the electric, acoustic, and classical guitar, bass, upright bass, ukulele, mandolin, accordion, chimes, cow bells, flute, piano, bongo, and maracas. The newer sounds are offered from the flute-like ocarina, a type of tambourine called a pander djembe, a hollowed gord instrument from Cuba called a guiro, and drums from Brazil, the Middle East, and Argentina (rebolo, dumbek, and bombo, respectfully). The kalimba, considered a percussion instrument, is a soundbox with keys played with the thumbs; the berimbau is a sing-stringed percussion instrument; the anklung is a bamboo instrument popular in Southeast Asia; and the Kora resembles a harp in sound. Although the instruments vary greatly song-to-song, they all share a generally adagio tempo, happy but tender and relaxing. We Are the Boat begins and ends with the soothing sounds of waves, C'est La nuit mon petit ange creates a light and happy mood through voices singing staccato notes in French in the background, while Brecairola per la nena sounds slow and mysterious. Nade gau and O Sey'a are as upbeat of a lullaby you are going to hear.

Children have in impeccable ability to pick up on sounds and tempos, so don't be surprised to see your little one swaying his or her head to the beat or looking to you whenever they hear a new sound, wondering what caused it. With so many new cultural instruments being introduced, they will certainly not lose interest. The songs have repeating melodies, and often either begin with the title or repeat the title in the chorus, so you can sing a few words or at least hum along while you rock your little one to sleep. I noticed this particularly in the Israeli song, Tumbalalaika; the fun-to-say title repeats many times throughout the adagio song featuring piano, accordion, and children's voices singing in choir quality.

My one-year-old friend, Mosley, and I enjoyed Atas Atas Amimmi because, I realized it was the Algerian version of "This little piggy." The idea behind the song is similar, except the Algerian version names fingers instead of toes; the pinky is little and wise, the ring finger wears rings, the index finger licks the pot, and the thumb crushes the little flea. Once all the fingers are named, you are supposed to tickle your little one anywhere and everywhere you can manage. Once he saw where the game was going, Mosley erupted in giggles - even before I actually tickled him! We replayed that song a few times, and then I switched to playing "This little piggy" with his toes, so he could begin making the connection.

--Audra

Patrick Lacoursiere was an actor, producer and journalist in Western Canada before writing the award-winning collection Dream Songs Night Songs.

This recording is a Parents' Choice Gold Award winner, and a Honors Award winner from the National Parenting Publications Association (NAPPA). The CD includes 13 songs plus PDF files with illustrations, original lyrics and translations.

The Secret Mountain's music has touched the hearts of parents and children for years. With multiple awards from Parents' Choice, NAPPA and Juno Awards, the Montreal-based publishing house has made great children's entertainment that both kids and adults will love.

1. Nade gau

2. Acalanto

3. Diarabi

4. Fais nanan m'tchou

5. Atas Atas Amimmi

6. Tumbalalaika

7. O Sey'a

8. Brecairola per la nena

9. C'eset la nuit mon petit ange

10. Die blumeleine sie schlafen

11. Dodo pti baba

12. 'Ndormenzete popin

13. We are the boat (Somos el barco)

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