Musical parenting ... memories of my Grandma

Musical parenting isn't just about parents! Neighbours, grandparents, siblings, carers all make their contributions!


And today, on what would have been my Grandma Grace's 108th birthday, I thought I would reflect on her contribution to my and my sister's musical upbringing!


Of course, Grandma read to me and, just like we all do, she would have used her expressive voice to represent different characters and different situations. That expressive voice is a musical voice ... variations in pitch and speed and dynamics that are part of music are also part of how adults communicate with young children!


What else? .... well when Grandma was young, she and my grandad owned a tandem. I loved hearing stories about this! Apparently she would put her feet up on the handlebars for a rest and Grandad would only realise this when he glimpsed their reflection in a shop window! And because of their tandem she would often sing Daisy Daisy to us .... then we would sing it back to her ... but change the words to Gracey Gracey!


Daisy, Daisy,

give me your answer do

I'm half crazy,

all for the love of you!

It won't be a stylish marriage,

I can't afford a carriage

But you'll look sweet upon the seat

of a bicycle made for two!



At Grandma's house we would watch certain TV programmes that we didn't watch at home and this included the soap operas Crossroads and Coronation Street! Well, to this day, I can't hear the theme tune to these programmes without thinking of my grandma - musical memories are powerful things!


And finally and perhaps most importantly... she believed in the power and importance of music. Her father had been an amateur pianist and that was important to her. Grandma supported Sarah and I, came to our dance shows, attended our concerts and encouraged us as we grew up. When we succeeded in our various musical enterprises she celebrated with us.


Musical parenting isn't just about parents! Neighbours, grandparents, siblings, carers all make their contributions!



Grace Ridge on her 89th and last Birthday - my much loved Grandma!