Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Three-peat! Hip-hop Christmas

So I guess all those months with nothing to write have left me bursting at the seams to blog. It's officially a three-peat as I sit down to write my third post in as many days. I figured I needed to bring it back home to some good old musical reviews, and I wanted to do a little trend-spotting after some recent Kindie Facebook activity. Is 2011 the year of the Hip-Hop Christmas?

Two new Christmas themed videos have been making the rounds that capture some of that "urban flava," with a very much sanitized kid-friendly slant. The first is called, "Robot For Xmas" by Westcoast family rapper Mista Cookie Jar. The video features some retro 8-bit graphics that will make today's parents nostalgic for when they opened their Nintendo NES on Christmas 1985:

In an additional layer of techno-geek nostalgia, there is a list of classic TV and movie robots that draw from everything from Star Wars to Wall-E (but sadly no Tobor or Gort... look 'em up). I also love that Santa makes a Super Mario sound while descending into the chimney and that Alvin finally gets his hula hoop! Little, clever touches like these make this one a soon-to-be-Christmas classic.

Now, just so I don't fall into an Eastcoast/Westcoast feud. I also wanted to feature a video of Atlanta based, Little Beat Chinchilla who is a puppet MC backed by human DJ Willy Wow. I met both of these artists (Mista Cookie Jar and DJ Willy Wow) at Kindiefest last spring. DJ Willy Wow was the first person I ran into even before the conference began. I saw a man climb out of the subway wearing a rainbow-colored, propeller beanie and I thought, 'This guy must be going to Kindiefest!' Little Beat and DJ Willy Wow's video is called, "The Santa Slide":

I know that the kids in my music class love any song with a dance they can follow. My favorite part of this video are the kids dancing Yo Gabba Gabba style, and the very skilled breakdancing young elves.

The Mike Brady Wrap-up: I know that Hip-Hop is not for everyone. If you are not a fan of auto-tune and heavy vocal processing, you should stick with some of the more standard Christmas fare, but I know that the current generation of young parents grew up listening to Rap and Hip-Hop from it's infancy. For me Christmas is a time for fun, family and nostalgia. A little Christmas dance party might be just what the doctor ordered to work out some of that high energy Christmas excitement.

Kid's Quote of the Day: Some of my older students were debating the existence of Santa, and two camps quickly formed. One young skeptic pointed to some of the far fetched details of a rotund man navigating a chimney, "How could Santa get down the chimney with his big fat belly, and why doesn't he just come in the front door?!" ~Carson (age: 7)

1 comment:

Anne Deysher said...

Oh yeah. They are starting to outgrow Santa. It's hard to give up the myth even though it becomes more and more obvious. The loss of innocence!