DaddyDJ: Baby’s first mixtapes

Today is the 30th anniversary of John Lennon’s death, and seeing all the tributes to him online and on TV, it got me thinking about his song “Beautiful Boy.” This was a relatively recent discovery for me, as I was never much of a solo Lennon fan. (I’m sorry, but “Imagine” needs to be given a rest for a decade or so before anyone else covers it, uses it as a fund-raising song, or features it on their TV show about a high school glee club.)

As a mixtape junkie, I’ve made CDs for every major milestone in our family’s life. There are 3 volumes to my partner, 2 from our commitment ceremony, one for our first house, and one for when we got our dog. I even gave a mix CD out at my 40th birthday party.

So for the birth of our son, the mix had to be perfect. I’d been making the list as I thought of songs, over the course of several months. There were the obvious choices (“Baby Baby”, “Baby Mine”, “Father Figure”), but when I came across “Beautiful Boy” I was completely smitten by the sweet lyrics, and stunned with the realization of how few great songs there are about the father/son relationship.

Close your eyes, have no fear
The monsters gone, he’s on the run and your daddy’s here

Before you go to sleep, say a little prayer
Every day in every way, It’s getting better and better

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy

The next verse starts “I can hardly wait to see you come of age” which is heartbreaking in its irony. Can you think of a pop song this beautiful and heartfelt from father to son? What a rare gem.

See the full track lists after the jump:

I was originally hoping to have the CDs done before JJ was born, but he came 3 weeks early. This proved both inspirational and informative, as I could now choose songs about someone I’d actually met and about parenting milestones I’d actually experienced. This made the mixes an even more meaningful time capsule of my first few weeks of Daddyhood. So, without further mushiness, here are the playlists:

Volume 1: Baby Baby
Baby Baby – Amy Grant
Boys Don’t Cry – The Cure
No Sleep Tonight – The Faders
Baby, What A Big Surprise – Chicago
Hold Me Now – Thompson Twins
Big Poppa – The Notorious B.I.G.
I’m Only Sleeping – The Beatles
Johnny Feelgood – Liz Phair
Keep On Growing – Sheryl Crow
Sugar Baby Love – The Rubettes
Teach Your Children – Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
Hey Baby – No Doubt
All The Young Dudes – Mott The Hoople
Daysleeper – R.E.M.
Everytime You Cry – The Outfield
Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy) – John Lennon
Crying – Roy Orbison
Lullaby – Dixie Chicks
Blue Eyes – Elton John
Beautiful Child – Rufus Wainwright
Baby Mine – Bette Midler

Volume 2: Sweet Child O’ Mine
Sweet Child O’ Mine – Guns N’ Roses
I Don’t Care If The Sun Don’t Shine – Patti Page
Hold Me – Fleetwood Mac
Mother Nature’s Son – The Beatles
Baby, Now That I’ve Found You – Alison Krauss & Union Station
Beautiful Child – Eurythmics
I See You Baby (Fatboy Slim Radio Edit) – Groove Armada
I’m Your Daddy – Weezer
Boy – Book Of Love
Don’t Cry – Asia
Eyes Of A Child – Michael McDonald
Blue Eyes – Cary Brothers
John I Love You – Sinéad O’Connor
Take Me Home – Phil Collins
Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You – Lauryn Hill
Cry – Godley & Creme
Father Figure – George Michael
God Bless the Child – Billie Holiday
We Are Family – Sister Sledge

I would love to hear your thoughts, whether you are as compulsive about mixtapes as I am or not! What are your favorite songs about fatherhood, parenting, or your children?

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