Baldischwilers (my mom's family) love Christmas music. Year-round. If you have Baldischwiler genes, you will at some point in your life get a small, secret thrill from listening to some Christmas music alone in your car in July. Or perhaps once in a while after a stressful day in the office, you'll come home and put on a little Vince Guaraldi Trio while you zone out to a couple hundred games of Spider Solitaire on the computer. Even I, the family Grinch, am guilty of doing this once or twice in my life. There's something therapeutic about it. I guess all that Christmas falderal just speaks to us Germans on a molecular level. We invented most of it, after all.
So it was not shocking when Maggie asked if we could listen to some Christmas music in the car on the way to school last week. She's the one in our immediate family of four most likely to ask for holiday tunes, no matter what the season. I always put on "A Charlie Brown Christmas" when she asks because it's the Christmas album that I tolerate best, especially when it's still October. It is, in my opinion, the best Christmas album ever made. A classic.
When Kate and I got back in the car after dropping Maggie off, she asked me to turn "that Snoopy music" back on. I smiled as I watched her in the rear view mirror doing her air drumming thing that she does, head hanging down, eyes closed, totally in the music. (She often falls asleep in the car doing this, no matter how raucous the music.)
I asked her, "Do you like this jazz music, Kate?" She asked me what jazz was, and I did my best to explain it to her without interrupting her drumming too much. We don't usually listen to a lot of jazz (Mike and I prefer blues), so we didn't really have any more examples on our iPod except for some old ragtimey stuff. She didn't want me to turn it off the Vince Guaraldi Trio anyway. She said, "This is good drumming music, Mom. I love this jazz music." When I asked her what she liked about it, she told me, "it beeps and it bops." Bee Bop!
We talked about how Boston has one of the best music schools for jazz musicians in the country (Berklee College), and I told her that she could go there when she grows up. "Are you going to play jazz piano?" I asked. "Or jazz trumpet? Or jazz bass?"
"Jazz drums, Mom! I'll play jazz drums 'cause I'm a drummer!" she says. Well, we shall see. But I guess she's got that in her genes as well.