I need a lullaby to sing for my baby

copyright banner salted photo header


A few months ago I started singing to my baby, but my singing is mostly either humming or stuff with made up lyrics like “you’ve got funny hair, yes you do, you look like Jackie Mason, yes you do”.

I don’t really know many actual songs. The only songs I remember from when I was in a band are Deep Purple’s “Smoke On The Water”, Dead Milkmen’s “The Beach Song” and the classic “Surfin’ On Heroin” from The Forgotten Rebels.


“I’m so fucked up I can’t remember my name / Tried it once, I’ll never feel the same. / I’m swimming in a sea of puke. / Lend me a quarter play myself on the juke. / Got my kid brother hooked yesterday. / Pimping him pays for my habit today.”
Forgotten Rebels; “Surfin’ on Heroin”, ‘The Pride and Disgrace’ (1986)


I used to know a bunch of camp songs… but the only ones I remember now need responses from the crowd to make any sense, like the “flee / flee fly / flee fly flow” song. And — as much as he thinks he is — my baby’s not really talking full time yet.


YouTube Alert


The only song I remember from childhood is “Farewell To Nova Scotia”, because it was deemed to be an acceptable socialist ballad by the Communist Party of Canada, so all the kids got to learn it: “…I grieve to leave my native land / I grieve to leave my comrades all…”.


YouTube Alert


From what I remember the lyrics where changed slightly from the original, but I can’t remember which ones. I have the CPC songbook somewhere, but I don’t really feel up to digging through that pile right now.

There weren’t many traditional lullabies in the collective I grew up in, and most of the children’s books we read came directly from the People’s Republic of China… so there wasn’t a lot of Dr. Seuss either.

Basically, I don’t know any lullabies. At least nothing suitable for a baby while out in public.

So… what lullabies do you sing to your kids, and which ones did your parents sing to you?




About Gabriel...

...diagnosed with manic depression when I was nineteen, for the next 14-years I lived without treatment or a recovery plan. I've been homeless, one time I graduated college, I've won awards for reporting on Internet privacy issues, and a weekly humour column. In 2002 I finally hit bottom and found help. It's now 2022, and I have an 8-year old son, and a 12-year old son... I’m usually about six feet tall, and I'm pretty sure I screwed up my book deal. I mostly blog at saltedlithium.com....
This entry was posted in Bipolar, Clinical Depression, crazy people with no pants, Health, Lithium, Living With Depression, Living With Manic Depression, Manic Depression, Mental Health, No Post Day, Punk, YouTube and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to I need a lullaby to sing for my baby

  1. nothingisalone says:

    when my niece was a baby, i used to sing her “Pray Your Gods” by Toad the Wet Sprocket. Beautiful song. Other than that, I’m with you in not knowing lullabies.

  2. thordora says:

    Thank You by Led Zeppelin (but covered by Tori Amos) was usually my go to lullaby. Or that mockingbird song…

    I don’t get to sing to them anymore. 😦

  3. catpriestess says:

    I’m going to really age myself here ; ) I’m a pagan and my mother sang this beautiful song to me that was magickal and so soothing and when my son was born, I sang this song to him…It’s called “The Gartan Mother’s lullaby” (here’s a link to the You Tube video that Meryl Streep sings.

    I love lullabies esp. traditional classic ones. They’re soothing for the parent and the baby.

  4. Finola says:

    My older daughter used to cry for hours and my husband would walk holding her endlessly, singing to her. Irish/Scottish songs were our favourites. They have a lot of verses, and gentle melodies. Some favourites:

    Maybe a bit odd, but whenever I hear any of these songs, I’m instantly transported back to the early days of having children.

  5. Bromac says:

    Rock a bye baby
    Do you know the muffin man
    My bonnie lies over the ocean
    You are my sunshine (my fav)
    Twinkle twinkle little star
    Mary had a little lamb(i used to make a lot of extra verses for this one)
    Itsy Bitsy spider
    Any xmas song

  6. Bromac says:

    My child was the only person who could ever tolerate my singing. I miss those days.

  7. fuzzpedals says:

    My dad used to sing us Gordon Lightfoot songs — eg the Great Railway Trilogy, the Pony Man: http://www.guntheranderson.com/v/data/theponym.htm

    I sang my son Thousands are Sailing by the Pogues – the lyrics sound melancholic but you can ‘dance’ when you get to the word. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IooPBuFoJCM. Anything by Bob Marley.

  8. Rae says:

    I don’t remember my dad ever singing to me. When the girls were toddlers, we used to let them pick from a list. Now they have set songs (since they were about 3, they always picked the same song…)

    My oldest gets a song from a video game, called the hymn of the fayth – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AuuqsOdPHL8

    The middle girl has always asked for “You are my Sunshine” but I only sing the first verse.

    Gryph seems to like Row Row your Boat, or Land of the Silver Birch http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OUgHzMPflek which was burned into my brain by guides!

    Right now he doesn’t care /what/ you sing, just that you do!

  9. Gabriel... says:

    Funny story… when I was eighteen I sang Led Zeppelin’s “Thank You” to a girl I met during my month long stay on the psych ward at the Ottawa General Hospital. We actually started dating while we were both on the ward. She was in for overdosing on T3’s and vodka — I can’t remember what it was in response to. We’d mostly meet in the common room after 1am and listen to my Walkman, talk and eventually hold hands. One night the nurse-on-duty found us and confiscated my Walkman. So we walked around the halls for a little while and I sang / whispered “Thank You”.

    I wish I could remember her name. She got out before I did. I met her once on the outside, but her mom really didn’t appreciate having someone from the ward dating her daughter. Plus, she was in Ottawa and I wasn’t.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s