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Yo What's Up With The Gabba

Dyani Ellwood
Dyani Ellwood

It's a morning ritual; my son and I eat our yoghurt and cereal and tune into the smiling, happy, seriously-full-on faces on TVNZ's latest and greatest kid's programme - Yo Gabba Gabba.

Typically American, big, bright, bold and bountiful characters and special guests; there's never a dull (or quiet) moment. 

What surprises me however is the level of entertainment - we're not talking The Wiggles playing Big Red Car, no way! Yo Gabba Gabba has bands with names like 'The Shins,' and bands that play songs with tunes I'm sure I've heard from the likes of The Black Rebel Motorcycle Gang.

Its pretty advanced stuff - especially when you pair it alongside it's main audience, two and three year olds.

Whilst the main themes of each program do centre on simple things like: summer, spring, teeth, fun etc.  I wonder why these innocent, fun-loving topics are interjected with music that I'd probably have no quaims about playing at a Saturday night party.

Are we trying to mold children into cultural appreciators and music gurus before they can properly talk?  Is the world (or America) trying to develop a new-age kid: a child that'll shun twinkle little star for some jazz/puro beat at 8am every morning?

Or, are the 'funky' bands they bring on the show more of a ploy to get parents to sit down with their children? 

I admit, I'm treading a fine line here - running the risk of sounding incredibly old fashioned, but I do believe it is important for children to just be children and listen to children-type music  and leave the alternative beats for later on in their youth - when they're capable of such cultural comprehension.


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