We're home after a (thank you, God) pleasant 3.5 hour ride. We spent today in Times Square on our way to the New Victory Theater to see Dan Zanes (yes, he is going to have to take out a restraining order against us). It was his Holiday House Party, wherein a bunch of friends come over and play Christmas music, Chanukah music, Korean New Year music, Mexican "jarocho" music, North African and Arabic music, and a whole bunch of tap dancing and kiddie dancing and...and...and...everything. It rocked. Basya Schechter did the coolest disco version of Maoz Tzur (Rock of Ages) and O, Hanukkah I've ever heard. They did the absolute most fun 12 Days of Christmas ever, tons of Veracruz fiddling by the Villa Lobos Brothers, and a giant helping of absolutely rocking Arabic music from Palestinian-born musicians Tareq Abboushi and Zafer Tawil. The key songs for Bambina were "Let it Snow" and Leadbelly's "Grey Goose."
Bambina meets Ernesto
And that's why we love Dan Zanes. Because he brings Leadbelly to 4 year-olds. He brings Muslim and Jewish and Christian musicians together to party--for 4 year olds to see and hopefully internalize as The Way Things Should Be. He showcases the Villa-Lobos Brothers who inspire my 4 year old to want to fiddle like the house is en fuego. And, at the end of another 90 minute show, he waits around till the last child has said hi, till the last parent has taken a photo, till the last playbill has been signed. He stays for every single child even though he has another show in 2 hours. He's a class act in the classic sense of the word. And now he has a seriously stalkerooni superfan: At bedtime, Bambina and I always tell each other what we're going to dream about tonight. I always tell her (and it's usually true) that I'm going to dream about her and me and the BBDD doing happy things. She is usually going to dream about one of her "stuffies" (stuffed animals) going to a party, or about tap dancing or whatnot. Tonight she said while almost giggling with joy, "Mama, I am going to dream about Dan Zanes! And violins!"
Seriously. You'd drive 7 hours to a New York show the day after Christmas to see that look on your kid's face too, wouldn't you?