for people aged 2 and up

Unpigged (Jim Henson Records / BMG)


Lullaby: A Collection (Music for Little People/Warner Bros.)
various artists

By Allen Howie

Feeling a little guilty picking out a new CD while your child tugs at your pants leg and gazes longingly across the mall at the Power Rangers display? Now you can salve that guilty conscience with a couple of discs made for kids – and you might even find some stuff you'll like.

From its title to the art on the disc itself, Kermit Unpigged pokes gentle fun at Eric Clapton's hit Unplugged album. And while there are plenty of goofy _moments-to make the little ones laugh — Miss Piggy and Ozzy Osbourne wailing "Born To Be Wild," or Animal leading the Muppets through "Wild Thing"—there are a few treats in store for moms and dads, too.

Vince Gill offers a really pretty version of "Daydream," while Linda Ronstadt does likewise with "All I Have to Do Is Dream." And parrotheads of all ages will be tickled by Jimmy Buffett serenading Gonzo and Rizzo with the Byrds' "Mr. Spaceman." But the highlight is Don Henley's soulful "Bein' Green," which is twice as good as anything on the Eagles' recent freeze-dried rehash.

Bedtime comes for all good children and one way to ease the little tykes into dreamland is with Lullaby: A Collection. Featuring well-known artists such as Bobby McFerrin, Judy Collins, Loreena McKennitt and Take 6 alongside lesser known musicians like Kevin Locke and Libana, this multi-cultural set works both as a way to calm young ones at naptime (road-tested at the child care center my wife directs) and as a wonderfully eclectic record for late at night when the kiddies are in bed and the adults aren't.