Lullabies on the way out?!?

In a study released by British website www.thebabywebsite, today’s new moms are choosing pop and rock songs for putting their infants to sleep these days. Granted, there are some beautiful ballads out there, and some sweet, soufful pieces on the radio, that sung quietly by Mom or Dad would be lovely. But the top songs?

In the survey, 10 per cent of women couldn’t remember the words to even one lullaby. That makes me sad. I sang “Hush Little Baby” to Tessa, some of the versions lasting 20 minutes and covering every rhyming word in my head. For Graydon it was “Rock a Bye Baby” with the words changed so he wouldn’t grow up with a fear of falling out of trees, and “Baa, Baa, Black Sheep.” By the time I was signing to Luka, it was “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Bat” and “Baby Mine.”

The Brit mommies aren’t just singing these tunes, they’re playing them. Call me old-fashioned, but I cannot imagine a wee one nodding off to Guns ‘N Roses.

Here’s the list of the top 20 for your consideration:

1. Patience, Take That
2. Angels, Robbie Williams
3. I Kissed a Girl, Kate Perry
4. You’re Beautiful, James Blunt
5. Love Me Tender, Elvis Presley
6. Beautiful, Christina Aguillera
7. Warwick Avenue, Duffy
8. Sweet Child O’ Mine, Guns n Roses
9. Wonderwall, Oasis
10. Girls, Sugababes
11. Back for Good, Take That
12. I Will Always Love You, Whitney Houston
13. Everything I Do, I Do it for You, Bryan Adams
14. Chasing Pavements, Adele
15. I’ll Stand By You, Girls Aloud
16. Dance Wiv Me, Dizzy Rascal
17. Nothing Compares to You, Sinead O’Connor
18. You’re Flying Without Wings, Westlife
19. Put Your Records On, Corinne Bailey Rae
20. Mama, Spice Girls

Just one question for you: whatcha think??

The beautiful photo above is from Desmond Morris’s new book Amazing Baby (Firefly Books, $40, hardcover). I’m giving away two of them—click here to enter. Contest closes Dec. 7, so don’t delay!


4 Responses

  1. I have a comment on my own posting today: I was thinking about lullabies for a little longer, and found this site that has many of the words for lullabies that I mostly made up the words for. In the middle of the night, who hasn’t?

  2. As long as people are still singing their babies to sleep, then the world is in a good place.

  3. I have a friend with a new born who settles down immediately to because the world is round by the Beatles.

  4. I laughed when you said you changed the words to “Rock a Bye Baby”; as far as my kids are concerned, it goes “…and Mommy will catch you, cradle and all”.

    My kids, at 5 and 8, still get sung to individually each night, as part of the bedtime routine. The 8 year old gets “Hush Little Baby”, because I’ve always sung it to him, and it’s long and that worked when I was rocking a newborn to sleep. He also insists on my fairly tuneless tune for “Love You Forever” from the Robert Munsch story. (I understand Robert had a tune in mind, but I’ve never heard it.) The 5 year old gets “Brahm’s Lullaby”, including a second verse I looked up in an effort to vary my repetoire for baby #2. Ambitiously, I collected two verses in German, but they never made the cut. After Mama sings, they both get their own lullaby cd, which is often left on repeat until the adults come to switch it off at their bedtime. Their cd’s are lullabies, because that seems more conducive to sleeping. I can see “Love Me Tender” working, but the others listed, not so much.

    I love singing to them still, and dread the day the eight year old says, “Mom, enough.” And the prolonged gentle music on cd, I think, aids that transition to sleep. In fact, I picked up a lovely album of (mostly) Cape Breton lullabies at the library, and have it on my mp3 by my bed now…what’s sauce for the goslings is sauce for the goose, I guess. I hope they continue the lullaby tradition themselves when it is time, and it would make me happy if it’s the tunes they consider their own.

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