Jazz with Kids
The Yoko Miwa Trio has fans of all ages, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. If you have kids, or if you spend a lot of time with friends’ kids, you may have thought about how to get kids into jazz. There’s no way to guarantee they will share your tastes in music, but there are lots of ways to explore and enjoy music with young children.
- Head to your local library and pick up some kids’ books with jazz themes. A lot of the kids books on jazz that are out there focus only on the jazz scene from the 20s to the 50s, but still, they’ll be introduced to some legends. Picture books like “Charlie Parker Played Bebop” by Christopher Raschka and “The Jazz Fly” by Matthew Golub are great for reading aloud, as they are heavy on rhythm and onomatopoeia.
- Try out some musical instruments. The appropriate age to start kids on music lessons varies based on what you and your child hope your child will get out of the lessons, but any age is a good time to play “chopsticks” or bang on a toy drum.
- Dance around the living room together with your favorite jazz music playing. You don’t have to know any jazz dance – in fact, a lot of “jazz dance” is pretty grown-up oriented because of the sensual moves. Just be silly and uninhibited, acting out what the music makes you feel. Kids are great at this, so you may learn as much as they do.
- Go to a show with your kids. Choose a venue that’s kid-friendly and enjoy some music out. The kids may not be as focused on the music as you are, but they’ll pick up on the fact that going to see live music is fun. For example, Ryles has some good food for little ones on their Jazz Brunch menu, like French toast, blueberry pancakes, eggs any style, and freshly squeezed orange juice.