There's a period of time when your kids are little enough that you need some kid-friendly music to entertain them in the car. Unfortunately most children's music is insufferable. Here are some good albums.
  1. Smithsonian Folkways Children's Music Collection / Various
    This whole album is fun, beautiful, and historically significant. American folk music with a kid friendly focus. A mix of greats like Pete Seeger, Ella Jenkins, Jean Ritchie and Woody Guthrie. Also some foreign language goodies.
  2. For Our Children 10th Anniversary Edition / Various
    I could sell this album with one sentence: Bob Dylan singing This Old Man. But it has so much more, including a gross-out song by Bruce Springsteen, Sting singing a 19th century British folk song, and a gorgeous Carole King's Child of Mine.
  3. Not For Kids Only / Jerry Garcia and Dave Grisman
    Two American greats riffing with children's music on guitar and banjo. It is fun-loving and delightful and occasionally moving.
  4. The Bottle Let Me Down - Songs For a Bumpy Wagon Ride / Various
    Indie alt-country and rock take on children's classics and some fun surprises. Don't Wipe Your Face On Your Shirt is a family favorite but there's tons of good stuff here. Also this has the best title and cover of all.
  5. Ella Jenkins / And One And Two
    For the younger crowd this is like Barney music that doesn't make you want to pull your hair out. Ella Jenkins is so fantastic she can sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star with a class of kindergarteners and keep you enraptured.
  6. Night Time / Dan Zanes and Friends
    All Dan Zanes and Friends albums are great but this was our favorite. Fun, funky jam band that's completely kid friendly.
  7. A Child's Celebration of Silliest Songs / Various
    Chet Atkins singing I'm My Own Grandpa is worth the price of admission alone but there are a few other gems on this album like Taj Mahal doing Beans and Cornbread, Little Richard's On Top of Spaghetti, and a wonderful Burl Ives riddle song. My kids loved this album when they were very small.
  8. They Might Be Giants "here comes science"
    Suggested by   @ameliaville
  9. You Are My Little Bird / Elizabeth Mitchell
    Lovely and mostly calm. Sweet takes on classics. Released by Smithsonian Folkways.
    Suggested by   @ladyprofessor
  10. Caspar Babypants / Sing Along!
    CB = Chris Ballew from the Presidents of the United States of America. Mostly catchy as heck originals. My husband and I both like listening to his CDs as much as our girls do. "Bad Blue Jay" is my favorite from this one:
    Suggested by   @ladyprofessor
  11. Let's Go Everywhere / Medeski, Martin & Wood
    Fun and danceable. If you like MM&Ws music in general you will dig this. "The Train Song" is the one that gets stuck in my head:
    Suggested by   @ladyprofessor
  12. Sing Me To Sleep
    More for a nap in the car
    Suggested by   @rachelmlucas
  13. Laura Veirs' Tumble Bee
    Suggested by   @rachelmlucas
  14. Lullatone's Everyday Adventures
    Good concentration/homework/background music
    Suggested by   @rachelmlucas
  15. Fantastic Mr Fox Soundtrack
    A nice mix between instrumental and child appropriate classics
    Suggested by   @rachelmlucas