Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Shawn Colvin has a new album of children’s music adapted from the book Lullabies and Night Songs. The album, titled The Starlighter, will be released on Feb. 23 via Amazon Music.
Colvin says she received the book Lullabies and Night Songs as a gift from her parents when she was a young girl. The book joined famed 20th century American composer Alec Wilder’s arrangements with the fantastical artwork of Where the Wild Things Are author and illustrator Maurice Sendak.
“I had been taking piano lessons for maybe two years at the time,” says Colvin. “And one day my parents just gave it to me. I’m not even sure why, to tell you the truth. It’s not like I was even interested in lullabies, specifically. But Alec Wilder’s arrangements were just so beautifully done, and Maurice Sendak’s illustrations were so evocative. They really inspire the imagination. And the book itself was presented in a very classic sort of way; all the notes and lyrics were actually hand-printed onto the page. I just fell in love with it.”
In general, Colvin’s intent with these adaptations was to capture and telegraph some of the childlike magic and mystery at the core of Lullabies and Night Songs, while also offering a mature and deep musical experience. “I really want kids to enjoy this, but I think it’s important that parents like it, too,” she says, adding, “I also just think we have to give children more credit than we do in terms of being able to take in something that’s a little different than, you know, ‘A-B-C,’ or, ‘Let’s clap our hands, 1-2-3.’ That has its place, but my vision was to do something that could be enjoyed by children and grownups alike.”