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Holiday Music for Kids

The Sounding Joy, “Nicki and the Crew,” Trout Fishing in America and The Night Before on WXPN

Since last month’s column completed your holiday gift list, let’s fill your audio datebook with holiday-centric songs for the last weeks of the year.

The Sounding Joy, Elizabeth Mitchell and Friends

Elizabeth Mitchell and Friends’ rich CD The Sounding Joy was inspired by Ruth Crawford Seeger’s 1953 American Folk Songs for Christmas. This brilliant collection for all ages focuses on the reason for the season with musical range, production clarity and infectious spirituality. Familiar tunes (“Joy to the World,” “Silent Night”) get new energy from a superbasic approach that returns you to childhood discovery. Unfamiliar songs (“Cradle Hymn,” “Sing-a-Lamb”) will become favorites. These are 24 tracks of beauty that lift the entire holiday music genre.


“Nicki & the Crew,” Treetop Sisters

The spirited big-band arrangement of the Treetop Sisters’ “Nicki & the Crew” makes this original single a danceable holiday hit.


Trout Fishing in America at World Café Live

Another holiday tradition brings my favorite musical duo back for “Countdown to Noon” concerts at both World Café Live venues. Dec. 29 finds them in Philadelphia; New Year’s Eve, in Wilmington, DE.


The Night Before on WXPN

Kids Corner producer Robert Drake celebrates 20 years of playing Christmas music for the 24 hours of Dec. 24. This midnight-to-midnight radio and streaming extravaganza features a live chat room and in-studio camera accompanying a brilliant collection of familiar and new (to you) sounds that is now a Philadelphia holiday tradition. The reverence of the last hour starts Christmas Day beautifully.

Kathy O’Connell is a contributing writer to MetroKids and host of Kids Corner, weekdays 7-8pm on WXPN 88.5 FM.

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