Out of the mouths of babes...
I had a chance to play some songs at a local second grade today - and was it ever a blessing! We sang children's songs like "Bingo" and "She'll Be Coming Around the Mountain" (with hand motions and sound effects), American folk tunes like "Oh Freedom" and "This Land is Your Land" as well as rock and roll, gospel and some Beatles' to boot!
And were these little ones savvy! After playing a country gospel version of Merle Travis' "I am a Pilgrim" I asked them what that sounded like and one little waif said,"That is in a country music genre!" When I played James Taylor's "Steam Roller" a little guy with a Beatles' haircut said, "Oh man I LOVE the blues." And then I taught them to clap on the off beat (a real trick) and sang a few tunes with harmony and dancing.
One little boy asked me, "Do you know 'We will?" and when I confessed I didn't the whole class broke into Queen's "We will... we will ROCK you." So I taught them the clapping and we did it again! Reminds me of the time my youngest daughter told me she had already seen Amadeus when I told her we had been given tickets to an outdoor performance of the play. And when pressed she said, "Oh daddy, I saw it on TV... you know.. MTV where they play, "Amadeus, Amadeus, rock me Amadeus..." I told her, "Oh, hun, I think there is more to it than that although that's a GREAT start." (check it out...)
But when somebody else broke into Twisted Sister's "We're Not Going to Take It" the teacher looked at me in mock horror and asked, "Where do they get this stuff?" It was a blast and I am so grateful to be in a place where my second grade buddy, Ethan, can ask his pastor to come to sing with his class - and it all works.