Pete Seeger

Stories and Songs for Little Children

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The children's label High Windy Audio here creates a virtual Pete Seeger children's "greatest-hits" compilation by licensing tracks from '50s and '60s Folkways albums Abiyoyo, Song & Play Time with Pete Seeger, Pete Seeger Sings Folk Songs for Young People, Birds, Beasts, Bugs & Little Fishes, and Birds, Beasts, Bugs & Bigger Fishes. The stories are Seeger's celebrated "Foolish Frog" and "Abiyoyo," and otherwise a common element of many of the songs is the need to repeat and add to sequences of words or sounds à la "The 12 Days of Christmas." In "Green Grass Grew All Around," "She'll Be Coming ‘Round the Mountain," and "I Know an Old Lady," Seeger sings verse after verse, adding a new part each time and so involving youngsters who will delightedly struggle to keep up. A legend on the back cover reads, "Ages 2-12," which is a broad range, but the album title is more accurate: These are songs and stories for little children. Note that this version of "Abiyoyo," the first that Seeger recorded, was part of an album originally called Sleep-Time: Songs and Stories, and in keeping with that lullaby function, it drifts along at a low volume for several minutes at the end, so that the young listener can fall asleep.

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