LIKE THE REAL THING, BABY
November 1, 2002
in this techno-driven age, when it comes to making music, real instruments
still have a distinct edge over the bells and whistles of musical
toys. But why?
Accordion by First Act
Holm-Hudson, a Kindermusik Maestro, feels that
although musical toys have their place, nothing can substitute for
the experience of a live instrument. “It begins in the womb,”
she tells us. “We yearn for the resonance, the vibration of
our mother’s heart.” Fellow Maestro Marylee Kozlowski
agrees. “Music is more than just sound. It touches all the
senses. Real instruments have an organic vibration that plastic
or electronic music does not.“ All Kindermusik’s instruments
are age appropriate and developmentally-matched.
are definitely being drawn to toys that evoke the safety of childhood,”
observes Becca Jones, Kids Store Manager at Joseph-Beth Booksellers
in Lexington, Kentucky. “We’ve seen a big return to
classic musical instruments, especially since 9/11.” They
carry a full line of Small World Toys instruments
to entice budding musicians.
it’s not just the sense of security that drives sales of live
instruments. Hand-crafting definitely equals good business. Durability
and value contribute to their appeal. “One of our best sellers
is the Band in the Box by Melissa and Doug,”
Becca tells us. At $20, it’s an incredible price point and
parents love the quality construction of the instruments, all of
wood, steel, and brass and housed in a wooden crate.”
Band in the Box by Melissa
six children ages 4-15 were set loose in a local ZanyBrainy store
to make (and hopefully not destroy) their selection of musical instruments.
Here’s what all the resulting ruckus was about:
Little Tikes Melody Maker Gift Set including baby-sized
drums, tambourine, Tap-a-Tune piano and maracas was a crowd-pleaser
with something everyone could easily play.
Junior Accordion by First Act held one child captive
for at least five uninterrupted minutes. They all found it easy
to manipulate and made tones pleasing even to stressed-out adult
ears. First Act’s 3-Piece Drum Set made one
middle-school girl particularly happy. A 7-piece set is due out
this holiday season.
Hohner child-sized Folk Guitar
was also a big hit for its surprisingly good tone and solid feel.
kids who really want to learn a real instrument, First Act is an
example of a great, reliable brand,” says ZanyBrainy Store
Manager Candy Carroll. It lets them try an instrument at a reasonable
cost, and all their products are very authentic.” She finds
the music section to be one of the most popular in her store. “It’s
universal. You can see in their faces that they’ve been inspired.
And that’s what we’re here for!”
Industry Overview: Music
CD's, Cassettes, Videos and DVD's for the Younger Set
What the Experts Say: PLAY
IT AGAIN, SAM
Side bar: Sing-Song:
Music Makes Kids Smarter
Want to see more Musical Toys? Click
Return to ToyDirectory Monthly front page: Click
Send comments about this article to: email@example.com