Sunday, February 08, 2009


When Oliver was born a friend and fellow musician commented that his initials, OST, are used to denote "original sound track", something that had never occurred to us before naming him. But given my love of music-making I kind of like it.

For a long time now Oliver has been requesting his choice of music when out and about in the car, but as his tastes evolve it becomes more and more possible to listen to something we will both enjoy.

The track listing below is from a CD I burned for him last week, made up of songs with relevance to the little man. Some are songs I know he likes, some are my guess at what he might like, some are there because Hayley likes them and can enthuse about them to him to enlist his support and others are included just because they remind me of the little man.

Here's the track listing, the reasoning behind each and the success of rate of the tracks.

"Blitzkrieg Bop" The Ramones. It is well documented that Oliver loves this song. Sometimes it's hard to get him past this first track!

"Magic" Pilot. Taken from the movie The Magic Roundabout. (Though I didn't use that exact version as you have to buy the whole OST album to get it!) I remember it from my own childhood.

"Mr Blue Sky" ELO. Also from the movie The Magic Roundabout. Oliver sometimes complains this version (which is the original from ELO's 1978 album "Out of The Blue", an album which I got for Christmas that year on blue vinyl no less!) doesn't include the sound of Dougal licking (ice creams if I remember correctly). He also doesn't like the extended ending. (From the back seat I hear "I don't like this song" as the outro starts.)

"Waterloo" Abba. A longtime favourite, though apparently Mama Mia is currently more in favour.

"I love to Boogie" T Rex. Another one from The Magic Roundabout which has previously had him up and jigging about.

"Stop in the name of Love" The Supremes. There was a time when Oliver would listen to this back to back 6 times, which was my limit, not his. Nowadays he just likes it.

"These boots are made for walkin'" Nancy Sinatra. The story goes that when I was three years old (as Oliver is now) I would stand up in the back seat of my parent's car singing this song. Setting aside the clear safety concerns of this scenario (look it was the sixties and we were all risk-takers, even at age three!) I have always found this a happy image. And now my own three year old sings it too. I was prompted to choose it as he has just chosen his latest shoes: a pair of rather splendid brown boots.

"Puff the Magic Dragon" Peter, Paul and Mary. Oliver came home from nursery signing this last week. Another one I remember from a similar age. He is loving it.

"Oliver's Army" Elvis Costello and the Attractions. As a big Elvis C fan I took the chance to include this, but my Oliver, despite the name-check, is unimpressed.

"Octopus's Garden" The Beatles. I thought this jaunty blast of Ringo about a possible friend of Henry the Octopus would be just the job, but so far it seems to have passed him by.

"Monster Mash" Kids Bop Kids (originally by Boris and the Crypt-kickers?). One from my childhood that I have introduced here. He quite likes it. He got out of the car singing it the other day.

Thunderbirds Theme - Having recently introduced Oliver to the joys of Thunderbirds I thought we could have the music in the car. It has been quite popular. Yesterday he requested it as soon as we got in the car.

"Here you come again" Dolly Parton. Selected for two reasons. Oliver likes it. Hayley likes it.

"See you later Alligator" Bill Hayley and his Comets. I took a bet he'd like this and won.

"Take a chance on me" Erasure. Being an Abba track I thought he'd like it, but so far no.

"Beautiful Boy" John Lennon. What more need I say.

"The Ketchup Song" Las Ketchup. I'm starting to regret going public with this now. Hayley loved this song back in 2003 when I took her to Barcelona. It brings back memories of us dancing in the bars around Port Olympic. And I suspected that if I included it she might try to teach Oliver the dance. And I was right!

"You are my sunshine" (from the "Oh Brother where art thou" soundtrack). Many a night I sang this to the little man as he drank his milk. Happy memories.

"Echo Beach" Martha and the Muffins. A song Hayley and I both like. The little man remains non-committal.

"The King of Rock n Roll" Prefab Sprout. As poppy as they come, I was singing this in the morning before I made the CD as we trundled around Tesco.

"Run" Snow Patrol. A beautiful song that has always reminded me of Oliver even from before he was born. It was featured in a programme about pregnancy when explaining how the unborn child can hear songs from inside the womb and recognise them after birth. It always reminds me of that time of waiting and of the joy of his arrival.

"The man who can't be moved" The Script. I'll confess this means nothing to Oliver but is my current favourite song. I managed not to notice it last year on its release, nor its rather charming video. So far Oliver has reserved comment.


Anonymous said...

Mr Blue Sky is my theme song for Evan. i just started singing it on the day he was born and it's stuck. Amy's theme song is Isn't she lovely by Stevie wonder (but also sometimes My little buttercup by randy Newman)

I strongly suggest checking out Here come the ABC's by they might be giants and snacktime by barenaked ladies as great kid focused but adult friendly albums. If you email me your address I'll burn you a copy.

Anonymous said...

ooo i can only forgive you the ELO ( fpfpfpffpfp), Abba and Erasure because you included "Echo Beach" and the Monster Mash (it's a graveyard smash!).

Las Ketchup might be a decider, though

More importantly, can he play any of them on the ukelele yet??

Steve said...

Dan, Nice one! I'll email you this evening.

Delishus, Las Ketchup was for Hayley, honest. I really should have included "Hanging Around" by The Stranglers as I used to sing it to him in my best Hugh Cornwell voice and make him laugh. Anyway, I assume you haven't mocked more because I referred to you as a musician. :-)

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