Almost every summer, we visit Croatia and spend a few weeks on the island of Cres, a pretty nice, laid-back time spent drinking coffee, eating fish, swimming, and drinking beer and having kremsnita at the café in the old lighthouse keeper’s cabin. A campground sprawls next to said café  and every evening, as we tuck into our cakes and drinks, they host a children’s disco. The DJ doesn’t have too much to do, musically, other than start the tape. Every night, it’s the same songs in the same order, starting with Agadoo (the english version by Black Lace, and click that link at your peril).

Kid #1 and I were discussing the above, and I mentioned that I actually had Agadoo (thanks to a cheesy compilation I bought in the UK several years ago just so I could have Vindaloo by Fat Les (obviously before the fruit store opened (or at least before I got an iFruit))). “Can I listen to it, and bring back fond memories of our trips to Cres, please?” said Kid #1 while we drove off somewhere. I obliged, and realized the hell that I opened up for myself. Kid #2, age 2, would cry out, “Agadoo again Daddy!” whenever we got into the car.

I needed to change things up. Also, while I now have an iFruit attached to the vehicle full-time, the interface is  a bit wonky, as I can only assign 7 playlists to the stereo, and playing anything else involves unplugging the device from the glovebox, fiddling to find the song, and reattaching it. Not something I like to do whilst driving. I also didn’t want to have a playlist with Agadoo and Agadoo alone in it. I believe I might have driven the car off the road in that case.

So I made a playlist of songs that I like, that I thought the kids might like. So far, so yes. I have tweaked it a bit, thanks to feedback from the boys, but it has been an altogether positive experience. I’ve tried to stay off the mainstream, and add many different styles to pique their interest. Quirkiness also scores high, if you didn’t notice. Here’s the list:

  1. Agadoo by Black Lace (still haven’t weaned them off it, unfortunately)
  2. Vindaloo by Fat Les
  3. Istanbul (not Constantinople) by They Might Be Giants (the boys are already familiar with them thanks to Here Comes Science)
  4. We Like Bananas by The Hoosier Hot Shots
  5. In the Jailhouse Now by The Soggy Bottom Boys
  6. Big Rock Candy Mountain by Harry McLintock
  7. Still Alive by GLaDOS and Jonathon Coulton
  8. On the Radio by Regina Spektor (b)
  9. Sci-Fi Wasabi by Cibo Matto (b) (s)
  10. Mari-Mac by Great Big Sea (b)
  11. If I Only Had a Brain by MC 900ft Jesus (s)
  12. The Hockey Song by Stompin’ Tom Conners (b)
  13. Taglio! by Tricky Pixie
  14. Ikea by Jonathon Coulton
  15. Leaving on a Ship by Sharon Lewis
  16. ‘Til the Following Night by The Kingpins (Actually surprised the website still exists, these guys broke up almost 10 years ago)
  17. Steampunk Girl by John Anealio
  18. You, Me and the Bourgeoisie by The Submarines
  19. L’Amour est un oiseau rebelle by Maria Callas (aka Habenera, aka for my kids “the Bork Bork Bork song“)
  20. If You Want to Sing Out Sing Out by Death By Chocolate (just kidding!)
  21. Don Francisko Long Play by Djordje Balasevic (for old world flavour, of course this is an english song, though)
  22. Bike by Pink Floyd
  23. Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy by The Puppini Sisters (b)
  24. The Bob Dylan Song by Brendan Nolan

It’s a good mix, and I listen to it even without the kids in the car. The boys’ favourites are Istanbul, Jailhouse, and Mari-Mac. It’s pretty hilarious hearing Kid #2 asking “Conspanpintopple, please Daddy!”


(b) This song mentions a bee! Kid #1 loves bees!

(s) Oops, this song has the word shit in it. Erm. I make sure I sing along and say ship really loud, and move on.