Day #27 30 Day Summer Family Fun Challenge: My First Concert

ralphs world palatine street fest

Do you remember your first concert? I remember my first rock ‘n roll concert in high school. I went to see Billy Squier and Ratt. Not a proud moment, but certainly worth a good chuckle. However, other than vaguely remembering that my kindergarten teacher played the ukulele, I don’t remember seeing any concerts as a child. I love music and seeing a performer live is always memorable, so we share that experience with our kids whenever we can.

Little Rockers
Kids these days are so lucky that there is so much wonderful live music available. Taking your kids to see a live concert is a great way to bond as a family. You get to share an “adult” experience that you love with your kids. While I wouldn’t suggest taking a toddler to see Ratt (I am so dating myself here), there are so many wonderful children’s music performers today that parents love too. There are also so many bands and performers that I like as an adult that are now performing kids music. So, it’s fun for all ages. Bare Naked Ladies, They Might be Giants, Perry Ferrell, and Ralph Covert of Bad Examples have all jumped on the lucrative and fun kids music scene. So, take your kids to a live music concert this summer. It is a great experience, instills a love of music and the arts, and a lot of times it’s free!

ralphs world concert

A few weekends ago, our town hosted their Street Fest celebration. One of the performers was Ralph’s World so we went to see him and the band play for the oh, 8th time. (I’ve seen Ralph’s World more times than I have seen Lyle Lovett and the BoDeans now. I’m sorry Lyle, but you’re just going to have to put out a kids album for me to keep up.) It’s funny because my husband and I used to see Ralph as the lead singer of the Bad Examples all the time before we were married. Now, we groove and cheer to “I Have a Teddy Bear.”

If you have never been to a Ralph’s World concert then you are in for a treat. The atmosphere is family friendly, but with all of the dancing, screaming and yelling, you’d think Bon Jovi was playing. The kids are dancing and singing, the parents are singing and yelling, and it is a loud party for all. My favorite song – “M-O-M-M-Y Needs C-O-F-F-E-E”. It’s eerie, like it was written for me.

The Classics
However, loud parties aren’t the only concerts in town. Here in Chicago we have Ravinia, our outdoor music festival. While Ralph’s World and Justin Roberts do play there in the summer, we like to take our kids to the classical music concerts. The music is beautiful and calm, we bring our picnic dinner and the kids think it is so cool to be out late at night listening to music.

Beethoven's Wig CD

Want to turn your kids on to classical music? Try Beethoven’s Wig. His what? Wildly imaginative and fun, Beethoven’s Wig is one of the best introductions to classical music you could give to your children. Richard Perlmutter created this series of music to educate and get kids intestered in classical music. The CDs are set up in an interesting way. In the first half you hear well-known classical music pieces from the likes of Beethoven, Bach, Mozart, and Haydn with very silly lyrics which are appealing to kids and adults. The lyrics teach kids something about the composer or style of music. Then the CD includes all of those songs again, without lyrics, to be heard as the composer intended. To this day, our kids favorite CDs are the Beethoven’s Wig series. We have all 4. It always amuses me when we are in Nordstroms and they call out the names of the classical music. The store piano player is always impressed. (Heck, these CDs have done a better job of educating me on classical music than Classical Music 101 that I took in college.) We have all 4 Beethoven’s Wig CDs in our car and listen to them quite frequently.

the composer is dead

We also recommend Lemony Snickett’s The Composer is Dead Book and CD. Very funny! (Especially if your husband reads it to the kids with funny accents.)

Have a blast enjoying live music this summer with your family! Which kids music performers are your favorites?

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Tags: Family Fun Ideas · Summer Family Activities

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