Solitude – Billie Holiday


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Nothing Compares 2 U – Sinéad O’Connor

31 October 2017

Anguished breakup songs are maybe not super appropriate for lullaby purposes, but our culture has a lot more songs aimed at lovers than babies, so we have to make do with what we’ve got…

Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ – Michael Jackson

24 October 2017

You might think this song belongs more on a playlist for dancing your baby to sleep. It does indeed work great for that, though my kids prefer “Beat It” for dance party purposes. But like a lot of the best uptempo songs, “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’” also works well if you sing it slowly.

Free Fallin’ – Tom Petty

10 October 2017

“Free Fallin’” is my favorite Tom Petty song. I know that makes me sound basic, since it was his biggest hit, and the rest of his catalog is so wide and deep. But “Free Fallin'” really does it for me. In the wake of Petty’s death, I found the multitrack stems and listened to them closely. Later on, while singing the song to my daughter, I realized why I think it’s so cool: its ruthless, fearless minimalism. 

Ethan Hein

Ethan Hein

Ethan Hein is a Doctoral Fellow in Music Education at New York University. He teaches music technology, production and education at NYU and Montclair State University. With the NYU Music Experience Design Lab , Ethan has taken a leadership role in the creation of new technologies for learning and expression, most notably the Groove Pizza. In collaboration with Soundfly, he has developed a series of online music theory courses. He maintains a widely-followed and influential blog, and has written for various publications, including Slate, Quartz, and NewMusicBox.