Today, August 6, 2014, Ella Jenkins turns 90. To celebrate, here is a sampler of her latest Smithsonian Folkways release More Multicultural Children’s Songs.
More Multicultural Children’s Songs is a collection of songs from Ella’s world travels. Listeners will catch fish in Hawaii just before attending dinner festivities, and visit an Australian Zoo. There are also familiar songs like “Kookaburra” and “Waltzing Matilda,” but regardless of whether they are familiar or not, Ella adds her own special touch to each song, gracefully capturing the spirit of the cultures they represent.
The remainder of the songs on the sampler can be found at the Smithsonian Folkways site here.
I recently read an article about childlike wonder. The author was talking about how curious and magical seeing the world through a child’s eyes can be. As a parent, I often feel as though I am experiencing the world with the same sense of novelty as my 5-year-old. When my daughter wants to immerse herself in an imaginary world, I can’t help but feel that I am an honored guest in what feels like reality, if only for a moment. Whether I am a chef serving her tasty fruits and vegetables or she is a fire chief saving my kitty from a tree, I always feel a particular sense of wonder as I explore familiar scenarios with a renewed perspective.
Getting dressed up has always been a child-enforced requirement for most of our play. Sometimes my daughter extends the fun and wears her costume to a park or a restaurant, even asking people to call her by her character’s name. Regardless of what she chooses, it never occurs to her that she might be wearing “boy” or “girl” specific clothing. She is just enjoying herself, and I often marvel at her uncanny ability to walk proudly out the door as though it is just another regular day with just another regular outfit on.
The Pop Ups’ new video for “Costume Party,” really captures the fact that dressing up is always a party regardless of gender or age. As the Brooklyn duo dons all kinds of outfits they capture the essence of childlike wonder while also reinforcing the notion that “no matter what you see ya know that me is me is me.” “Costume Party” was recently premiered on Huffington Post by Jeff Bogle from Out With The Kids with a wonderful reference to the story that inspired the song.
Those familiar with existing Pop Ups’ material will enjoy seeing some references, costumes and puppet characters from previous videos. For newer fans, follow the instructions by super saxophone puppet guy for additional viewing options.
Appetite for Construction is now available for pre-order from Amazon and iTunes.