Monday, March 17, 2008

Baby Jamz CD and Toys

I'm participating in a fun new program, called Team Mom. As a part of team mom, our family gets to try out new products and I write a review. I don't get any money for doing these reviews, but just trying out the products is fun for us, and hopefully helpful to other moms!

The first product we received was Baby Jamz, the first hip hop inspired toys. The concept was created by Matthew and Solange Knowles, father and sister of Beyonce.

Now, I'm not the biggest fan of hip hop music, and I'm skeptical of anything with the word "Jamz" in it. But I'm definitely open minded. When my kids got home from school, we popped open the CD, and listened. I honestly was not initially impressed. However, as a musician and music teacher myself, my standards are pretty high. The singing was above average, although most of the instruments were computer generated. And I liked how they used a beat behind the traditional words of the nursery rhymes.

One thing that I just don't get with hip hop music is how the singing/rapping beat is slightly behind the percussion beat. I think this can sabotage kids' learning an internal rhythm, and learning to keep a steady beat. When I listened to the new words that went with some of the songs, I was completely speechless. Here is an excerpt from The BabyJamz version of Hush Little Baby:
Hush Little Baby, don't say a word. Mama's gonna to buy you a mockingbird.
If that mocking bird don't sing, Mama's gonna buy you some new bling bling...
Wait a minute... "bling bling?" Maybe I'm too much of a traditionalist. You can add what ever beats and melodies you like, but please don't mess with my favorite childhood lullaby lyrics, and add non-words for my children to learn. You can look at all the lyrics here.

Well, that's what I thought of it.

HOWEVER... I left the room for a few minutes, and came back to see my seven-year-old daughter making up a dance to "Buckle My Shoe." She was doing all the motions, and singing with it. A few minutes later, I found her making up yet another dance to "There Was an Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe," prancing around with a shoe, and making crying motions with her fists on her eyes. I must say it was precious. Her favorite one of the songs to sing and dance to was "Mary Mary, Quite Contrary."

The bottom line for the CD is that it's not bad, but not good, either. My kids have been playing it and dancing in their room, and they enjoy it. If I hear them use "bling bling" in a sentence I'll do an intervention, though. We'll use it, but I wouldn't spend money on it.

Y'all know I have to be honest, even though I hate to be negative on my first Team Mom review.

We also received two of the toys that come with the Baby Jamz line. The Baby Jamz Music Crew was fun for my two year old Daughter, Little Pea. She loved seting the characters onto the "boom box" and hearing the music. She even sang to the little people, and rocked them to sleep.

We also received the Baby Jamz Boom Box Shape Sorter. Each shape plays a portion of a song when it is placed in the correct order. Little Pea and Princess (4) had fun with this, but it was short lived. There isn't much to do with it and they lost interest after the first day.

Over all, the Baby Jamz products I tried earned three out of five blooms. My kids like them, but I wouldn't spend money on them.

One Baby Jamz product I think I would love is the Move and Groove Dance Mat. That looks really cool, and I think my kids would love it! You check out the entire product line at

Have you seen these products? What do you think of them?

1 comment:

Carey said...

I can't believe you don't know what blingbling is, sis.