When he was in his early teens, Johannes Brahms had a job playing piano in a tavern in Hamburg, Germany. Maybe that was his first experience lulling people to sleep. He was also the composer of “Lullaby and Goodnight,” also known as “Brahms’ Lullaby.” Brahms himself did not sleep like a baby – he was known to snore. What is your favorite lullaby or nighttime music? Why?
I know most people associate their mothers or women with lullabies, but I don't. I associate lullabies with my father!
One of my earliest memories is of my dad singing and rocking us to sleep every night. My sister, brother and I would all lay down on mom and dad's bed waiting for our turn on my father's lap. Dad would sing two songs to each of us as he held us and rocked us in the wooden chair. The other two siblings would eagerly await their turn in dad's arms.
Dad sang six songs every night. His rich voice made the songs magical. We were all entranced in the lyrics. We rejoiced in his musicality. We were caught in his spell - a spell that made us feel happy, comfortable and loved.
Dad still keeps lullabies alive. Even now, his own children have children of their own, he continues to carry on the tradition of tranquil, alluring music to his grandchildren. As each grandchild is born, they receive an original lullaby. The joyful, safe, loving feeling that I felt as a child is now instilled in my own daughters, as they listen to their very own song.
Katia, my youngest daughter, listens to "Katia Come Home" her lullaby every night before bed. She always says she KNOWS Papa loves her because of her song. Kiara begs me to play "The Grand Valley (Kiara's Song)" for everyone we meet... even her classmates!
I'm grateful for the legacy I have of listening to lullabies. I'm thankful my father sang to me as a child and continues to sing to my own daughters! When I struggle with insomnia, I listen to lullabies and beautiful calming music to help me sleep. And unlike Brahms, I do sleep like a baby when the music plays.