What I should have done is play them ReWiggled.
I believe that children should be exposed to a range of musical styles, not just the hoppy-boppy kiddie pop that is excruciatingly popular. However it can be difficult to find ‘non-kid’/popular music that has lyrics that are appropriate (Not just swearing, I’ve mentioned before about having issues with young children singing about romantic love). I feel The Wiggles do this better than most kids bands, writing songs from a range of different cultural backgrounds and also different styles of music.
When I heard that several Australian artist had done covers of Wiggles songs to celebrate The Wiggles 20th anniversary I was intrigued. I listened to a few of the songs before I bought the album, because covers can go badly and I had doubts about people treating it as a joke album rather than an actual music album.
Instead I was pleasantly surprised. While some songs I think are alot better in their original form (i.e. when The Wiggles sing them), many take on new and exciting lives when done by different artists. Sarah Blasko’s reworking of ‘I love it when it rains’ is a beautiful lullaby. Hot Potato (by The Living End) and Shaky Shaky (Sons Of Rico) are two of my favourites.
When I play this CD for kids I get different reactions, but mostly they love it. Sometimes they look confused, as if you say “I know this song, but something’s not right”, some little boys love to rock out and play air guitar, while others will happily dance along to all of them.
An interesting side note, one of my flat mates happened to meet Anthony from The Wiggles but didn't recognise him. Once Anthony told him what he did Colin asked if they could take a photo to send to me becasue his "flatmate loves you guys" (I hope he told Anthony I was an Early Childhood teacher not just some random 20 year old who listened to kids music all day! :) ). When Colin sent me the message I screamed and did a happy dance, cos, you know, I am an early childhood teacher ;).