Various Artists

Daddies Sing GoodNight: A Fathers' Collection of Sleepytime Songs

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This is a thoroughly charming, and occasionally heartbreaking, collection of children's bedtime songs performed from a father's perspective by an all-star cast of bluegrass and modern folk artists. There are one or two predictable standards, like James Taylor's "Sweet Baby James" (performed gently by the Seldome Scene) and Leon Redbone's rendition of the old Irving Berlin song "Russian Lullaby," but most of these are original tunes written for the children of those who perform them. In most cases this means remarkably sweet and personal songs like Alan O'Bryant's "My Little One" and Townes Van Zandt's "Hey Willy Boy." But in at least one case the effect is more bittersweet: Doc Watson performs two songs, "Prairie Lullaby" and "My Little Buckaroo," in memory of his son and lifetime musical partner, Merle, who was tragically killed in a farm accident not too long before this album was recorded. All of this gives an unexpected level of emotional complexity to what is a deeply moving album overall.

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