Mom needs the music in her

Posted by Erica Noonan  January 5, 2010 09:22 AM

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I keep up tolerably well with news and popular culture -- I can tell you what's up with the economy, Jon and Kate Gosselin, local politics, global warming and the last episode of Glee.

But one area where I have completely lost my groove -- and I blame parenthood for this -- is music.

After a day filled with noise, people talking, phones ringing, kids screeching, Barney singing "Mr. Golden Sun," and that catchy, but increasingly irritating theme song "It's a sunny day, I feel brand neeewww..." from Peep and the Big Wide World, all I want is silence.

But music is food for the soul, even mine.

The problem became clear when in anticipation of our New Year's Eve dinner party, I checked the kitchen iPod to discover all I had to accompany our tapas and champies was an ancient download of Sting's 1985 "Dream of the Blue Turtles" album, and bunch of "Eating Mindfully" meditation exercises.

Oh no. Epic fail!

So I went to the one person I knew could help -- the new intern, a smart-as-paint, sweet Northeastern student. Young people have this kind of knowledge in their DNA, don't they?

Jason, I said, I am in crisis. I need age-appropriate music for a dinner party. Immediately.

He was quiet for a moment, staring intently as if studying my aura. (I imagined he might be thinking to himself: "Who's Sting? And what do 800-year-old people listen to at their dinner parties? Funeral dirges?)

But his suggestions were brilliant: Ray LaMontagne, he said, try the "Gossip in the Grain" album." And Counting Crows, especially "Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings."

Party saved! I'm going to ask Jason for some new ideas this week. I'll post an update with his latest recs.*

(UPDATE 1/12 -- Jason comes through again! This week's rec is British adult alternative singer/singwriter James Morrison. Check out "Undiscovered" and "Songs For You, Truths for Me.")

How do you find new music when your day is filled with so much other noise? Who are some good contemporary artists moms and dads should check out? Leave a comment or send an email to

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about the author

Erica Noonan is chief of the Globe West bureau. Before joining the Globe in 2000, she worked for the Associated Press in Boston. Raised in Wellesley, she has a master's degree in political communication from Emerson College and a BA in political science from Trinity University in San Antonio. She lives in Natick with two energetic children: Dennis, 6, and Lila, 4.

Contact Erica

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