Jazz Favorites for Your Next Toddler Dance Party (Free!)

Jazz music for toddlers

As professional classical musicians, my husband and I have been having so much fun introducing our young children to the world of music! Our three-year old son loves dance parties, and here’s what we’ve been playing on repeat —

“Sing Sing Sing” by Benny Goodman

This one never gets old!

“Take 5” by Dave Brubeck

A perennial favorite!

“Blue Rondo à la Turk” By Dave Brubeck

Another Dave Brubeck! The 9/8 meter is so fun in this one — instead of being grouped in three groups of three, the eighth notes are grouped in three groups of 2 and one group of 3 (one two one two one two one two three)

And, because we are classical musicians, we can’t resist sneaking in some pieces that sound like jazz but were actually written for classical musicians to perform in the concert hall —

“Curly Maple Rag” by Brian Dykstra

This hauntingly lyrical rag is written for an orchestral instrument that lends itself unexpectedly well to jazz — the bassoon! Performed by Barry Stees of The Cleveland Orchestra.

“Lancashire Ragby Brian Dykstra

This lively, playful rag also features bassoon.

Bolling Suite for Cello and Jazz Trio

This piece is *so* much fun! It features another orchestral instrument — the cello! — paired with a classic jazz combo: piano, drum set, and bass.

“Cafe Music” by Paul Schoenfield

The piano trio (piano, violin and cello) is a standard grouping for classical chamber music. However, the instruments are delightfully showcased as “jazz” instruments in this piece!

Which piece is your favorite? Let me know in the comments below! As a professional bassoonist, I’m biased and love the Curly Maple Rag, but I’ve also always loved the Bolling Suite.

Thanks so much for reading, and have fun at your next toddler dance party!

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