sweet dreams
December 22, 2009 2:55 PM   Subscribe

Looking for pop/alt lullabies to put on a mixtape (er, CD) for new parents. Anything sweet, slow, easy to listen to when the baby is up at night and won't go to sleep. Strongly prefer newer stuff, because they've already got the old warhorses (Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel, Cat Stevens, etc).

(Yes, I am aware of an earlier question from 2005, but since it is now 4 years later, I know there's a lot of newer stuff out.)
posted by thinkingwoman to Media & Arts (24 answers total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
Well, there's always this set of lullaby renditions of pop music.
posted by ThaBombShelterSmith at 3:11 PM on December 22, 2009

I listen to Zero 7 sometimes when I want something soothing but not boring (When It falls is nice). I see they're mentioned in the previous thread though.

When I See You Smile by Bic Runga would make a great lullabye. I'm at work so can't access You Tube but a google search brings up a couple of versions.
posted by shelleycat at 3:12 PM on December 22, 2009


"Rabbit Songs" and "Eveningland" by Hem are divine.
"The Creek Drank the Cradle" by Iron and Wine
"Riot on an Empty Street" by Kings of Convenience
posted by ThaBombShelterSmith at 3:12 PM on December 22, 2009

Polly Paulusma would probably be my go-to girl in this case - lovely voice, generally quiet and pretty songs (although they can get a little speedy sometimes). Have a listen to Dark Side and She Moves in Secret Ways.
posted by ZsigE at 3:17 PM on December 22, 2009

IMHO, the Rockabye Baby lullabies are HORRIBLE. I cannot stand hearing my favorite music lullaby-i-fied. And my kid (now 1 year old) never liked them.

What I'd like as a new parent is:

- nature sounds/white noise to help put baby to sleep (we used Echos of Nature) (disclaimer, this was only helpful in the first 2 months)
- tolerable kids music (my faves are Putomayo, They Might Be Giants, Dan Zanes), but honestly nowadays we're listening more to the Dan Zanes Pandora channel and discovering all kinds of great new folk kids music.

If you'd like, I JUST burnt a data DVD of all of the kids music that we own (including what I mentioned above) and I'd be happy to burn one and mail it to you.
posted by k8t at 3:22 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

A few randoms:

Sufjan Stevens - most anything, even his song about John Wayne Gacy Jr.
Feist - One-Two-Three-Four, Secret Heart
Josh Ritter - Girl in the War
Decembrists - Angels and Angles
Ivy - Edge of the Ocean (most anything from "Long Distance", actually, is pretty soothing)

And a recent favorite:
Fairouz - Yalla Tnam

Also, seconding Hem. especially the song "When I was Drinking"
posted by archofatlas at 3:29 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

Fleet Foxes
Sharon Van Etten
posted by designbot at 3:29 PM on December 22, 2009

Lullatone!! (esp. their newest cd, songs that spin in circles)
posted by extrabox at 3:51 PM on December 22, 2009

They Might Be Giants, "Sleepwalkers."
posted by Countess Elena at 3:58 PM on December 22, 2009

There's a lot of good stuff on Down By the Sea Hotel
posted by Pater Aletheias at 4:08 PM on December 22, 2009

Now the Day is Over by the Innocence Mission. So fantastic.
posted by rtha at 4:20 PM on December 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

Thirding Hem ('He Came to Meet Me' and 'Half Acre' most), um... another-voting Iron and Wine, also try the album Speechless by Bruce Cockburn (all acoustic, some of them more relaxing than others), maybe some Grey Eye Glances (sort of Hem-ish). Drifting from pop/alt, a song called 'Jennifer's Rabbit' by Tom Paxton, two by Bobby McFerrin ('Baby' and 'Lullaby', I think - one from this album and one from this one (both of those albums have other good songs also, but some of them on the Lullaby one are kind of creepy and/or grating)... Dar Williams, the Nields, Po' Girl, the Wailin Jennys all have possibilities... Kathryn Williams, Mindy Smith, and Kate Rusby.

Um. Yeah. Kate Rusby. 'Little Jack Frost' and others.

New Pornographers, 'Go Places'.

In all honesty I'd recommend seeding some Pandora stations with whatever recommendations you get and seeing what you can flush out.

In the category of Definitely Not Pop/Alt (but might be worth a listen) - I remember liking the Ric Louchard cds (G'night Wolfgang, G'morning Johann, Hey Ludwig, I think?) - they're classical and simple and just a piano, but possibly the right sort of thing. And some Joe Jackson (off Will Power) might be ok-ish. Also (thank god for google - 'jazz piano chronic fatigue' = Keith Jarret) - maybe this or this.

I'm sure I'll remember more months from now. Hmph.

For waking times, don't neglect Trout Fishing In America. I think they're the only 'kids' songs'-type music I could stand.
posted by magdalenstreetladies at 4:25 PM on December 22, 2009

Old warhorses they may not have.
posted by Morrigan at 4:38 PM on December 22, 2009

Vagabond by Air/Beck, possibly more Air
Beck-Paper Tiger
Morcheeba- Big Calm is a good starter album
posted by ijoyner at 4:44 PM on December 22, 2009

Seconding Sufjan Stevens.
posted by runningwithscissors at 4:45 PM on December 22, 2009

California Stars, Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key, and Ingrid Bergman from the great Mermaid Avenue disc from Billy Bragg and Wilco. Also, Mark Knopfler and/or Dire Straits. Water of Love is such a great song.
posted by irisclara at 5:05 PM on December 22, 2009

ooh, yeah! Mark Knopfler! Music from the film Cal, some bits, anyway. (and anything else involving him.)

Van Morrison? No Guru, No Method, No Teacher? It gets a bit noisy at times, but mostly mellow and gorgeous.
posted by magdalenstreetladies at 5:09 PM on December 22, 2009

Tunng e.g. 1, 2, 3. Beautiful British folktronica.
posted by jonesor at 5:46 PM on December 22, 2009

amy correia - starfishin'

zee avi - honey bee

Wilco - everlasting everything

Chris and Thomas - you're the one I want
posted by krikany at 6:26 PM on December 22, 2009

The Jayhawks - All the Right Reasons

Also maybe not what you're looking for, but two albums that make everyone in this house sleep on command are () by Sigur Ros, which is probably the most soothing album known to mankind, and Tres Cosas by Juana Molina.
posted by howrobotsaremade at 7:09 PM on December 22, 2009

Camera Obscura - Books Written For Girls

Owen Pallett - Adventure.exe

Cat Power - Metal Heart (Moon Pix version)

(smog)/Smog/Bill Callahan/&c. - Truth Serum

Orillia Opry - I Lied

Andrew Bird - Sovay (I really like this live version, but the one on the album's good, too. More sedate.)

Julie Doiron - Me and My Friend

John Fahey's good; I like Legend of Blind Joe Death best
posted by balmore at 7:30 PM on December 22, 2009

Wilco's already been mentioned, but how about My Darling (from Summerteeth)?
posted by Infinite Jest at 12:26 AM on December 23, 2009

the roche sisters have a lovely album of kid's songs, including a lullaby or two.
posted by msconduct at 7:26 AM on December 23, 2009

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