The next booming market, music for NICU wards...
February 19, 2012 3:14 AM   Subscribe

What are some nice relaxing songs I can play on the guitar for my son in the NICU ward?

As per my previous question my son was born at 25 weeks and is in the NICU (and is doing well after some ups and downs).

I burnt some of my music to a CD to play in the NICU which was well received by doctors, nurses and the other parents, so I took my guitar in and played. Turns out I only know the songs I know, and I've exhausted my slow relaxing songs.

Any tips for something slow, relaxing, sleepy (or can be arranged nicely as such)?

Thanks!
posted by Admira to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (23 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
Some Jose Gonzalez perhaps? (not instrumental as such)

(Congratulations :) )
posted by revikim at 3:26 AM on February 19, 2012


Congratulations on your little one!

If you want some more lullaby songs, here are some good ones, most of which I imagine can involve guitar playing:

All the Pretty Horses
Dark Brown is the River
All Through The Night
Brahms Lullaby
posted by zizzle at 4:40 AM on February 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


Seconding Zizzle's song selection, and letting you know that the son of a friend was born similarly small and premature, spent three months in the hospital, and is now a healthy and very bright 9 year old.

Singing and playing for your little one is a lovely idea.
posted by mermayd at 5:23 AM on February 19, 2012


Here Comes the Sun by the Beatles.
"Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter..."
posted by PSB at 5:54 AM on February 19, 2012 [3 favorites]


I've always sung a lot of James Taylor to my son - Blossom, Close Your Eyes, Sarah Maria, Sweet Baby James - a lot of his would work for this. You are My Sunshine, that's another good one.
posted by lemniskate at 6:18 AM on February 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


Expanding on what PSB said, the Beatles, together and solo, have a lot of songs that would work. Octopuses' Garden, Silly Love Songs, even While My Guitar Gently Weeps. (just leave out the fiery guitar solo. Or don't.) Norwegian Wood. Here's a list.

Also, almost the entire soundtrack of Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? works well as lullabies.

Congratulations!
posted by MexicanYenta at 7:14 AM on February 19, 2012


So many Beatles songs to choose from - childhood favorites included Dear Prudence, While My Guitar Gently Weeps, I Will, Julia, Mother Nature's Son, Tell Me What You See, Michelle, Norwegian Wood, Here Comes the Sun, Golden Slumbers... most Beatles are already arranged somewhere for guitar so you wouldn't have to improvise or pick it out if you didn't want to. Bless you and your little son!
posted by juniperesque at 7:16 AM on February 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


My go-to lullaby suggestion: Mary Chapin Carpenter's Dreamland. I can't find the chords or tab, but the lyrics are here.
posted by SuperSquirrel at 7:18 AM on February 19, 2012


Tangled Up In Blue and Shelter From the Storm are both mellow favorites around here (if you ignore the lyrics!) but not so fun to play on guitar I imagine.
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:51 AM on February 19, 2012


I was born two months premature and spent the first month of my life in the NICU, and my mom and dad would play me Moody Blues songs - granted, this was the early 70s, but I guess their catalog was good for soothing baby songs.
posted by Neely O'Hara at 8:02 AM on February 19, 2012


My little one's favorite is Moonshadow. I think that might work. Congratulations and what a sweet thing to do for the baby.
posted by dawkins_7 at 8:12 AM on February 19, 2012


Oh, and one more thing. You might get tired of the same old songs and the staff might get tired of them too but the babies will love them. They love to hear the same thing over and over (and over and over. . .).
posted by dawkins_7 at 8:14 AM on February 19, 2012 [2 favorites]


I imagine a lot of James Taylor or Don Williams songs will do; it's probably not so much what the song is about, as your presence and voice in his world.

And congrats on your lovely little one!
posted by easily confused at 8:48 AM on February 19, 2012


I've been learning some really basic songs on uke this month and I suggest In The Jungle because you can basically sing "wee mo weh" over and over as much as you want. You Are My Sunshine is another simple one though the lyrics outside the chorus are a little bleak.
posted by jessamyn at 9:22 AM on February 19, 2012


Check out the songs that Elizabeth Mitchell sings. Some of them would probably work for you to play. Also, here is a book that might help: Rise Up Singing.
posted by gudrun at 10:03 AM on February 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


You might be able to find sheet music for any of the Miyazaki movie scores. I find that My Neighbor Totoro, Howl's Moving Castle, and Kiki's Delivery Service all have super relaxing scores that might be a welcome addition to your repertoire of more well known tunes.
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 10:20 AM on February 19, 2012


Little Baby of Mine which I think is the theme song from the latest Dumbo movie. It is sung by Alison Krause. It is so sweet it makes me cry...maybe not so good in this situation.
posted by cairnoflore at 10:25 AM on February 19, 2012


"Sea of Dreams" by the talented singer/songwriter/musican Joel Mabus is everything a tender lullaby should be. You can order the lead sheet for the tune for a dolla.
posted by drlith at 11:17 AM on February 19, 2012


Another Beatles number: Blackbird
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 11:24 AM on February 19, 2012


Kings of Convenience - Once Around the Block (Badly Drawn Boy cover)
Iron and Wine - Such Great Heights (Postal Service cover)
Sufjan Stevens - Romulus
The Magnetic Fields - The Book of Love
Mirah - Engine Heart
Andrew Bird - The Happy Birthday Song
Andrew Bird - Souverian
Feist - How My Heart Behaves
Joseph Arthur - Honey and the Moon
Norah Jones - Sunrise
Travis - Last of Laughter

and anything by Simon and Garfunkel
posted by hellomina at 11:39 AM on February 19, 2012


(Oh! Could you please tell us what you end up playing? Music makes everything better :) Wishing you and your son the best!)
posted by hellomina at 11:48 AM on February 19, 2012


What a Wonderful World comes to mind.
posted by lakeroon at 4:27 PM on February 19, 2012 [1 favorite]


"Down in the Valley" is The Lullaby in our house.
posted by cymru_j at 5:34 PM on February 20, 2012


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