Putumayo Kids Presents: Reggae Playground
First Appeared in The Music Box, May 2007, Volume 14, #5
Written by John Metzger
Thu May 10, 2007, 05:30 AM CDT
One of the more recent chapters in Putumayo’s series of world music compilations geared towards families is Reggae Playground, a 13-track collection that culls previously released material from an array of albums by artists that span the globe. Jamaica’s The Burning Souls cheerfully delivers The Beatles’ Here Comes the Sun over a buoyantly vernal groove; Hawaii’s Marty Dread & Friends transforms the silly Mouse in the House into a shimmering, R&B-laden excursion; Frenchman Alain Schneider softens Le Vieil Éléphant’s sad tale by embedding it within a warm, easy-going shuffle; and Toots and the Maytals twists John Denver’s Take Me Home Country Roads into a transcendent, gospel-tinged spiritual. Not surprisingly, there are a few moments scattered throughout the outing in which children participate in the festivities, but compared with most like-minded affairs, the condescending lyrics and cloying kids’ chorales are kept to a minimum. As a result, the healing power of reggae’s positive vibrations is allowed to shine, and when Reggae Playground’s program has concluded, parents are more likely to hit the repeat button rather than the off switch.
Putumayo Kids Presents: Reggae Playground is available
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2007 The Music Box