Hello Music Class families!
My name is Raina Sayer, and I’ll be writing these “Song of the Week” blog articles for you! I am in a unique position to be able to bring you cool facts about Music Class songs because I grew up through the creation of them, and even wrote some of them myself! “Do a Little Twist” is a song I wrote when I was 10 years old, so I wanted to dive into the personal stuff with this week’s blog. But… I felt a little silly talking myself up to you guys… so I decided to do it in the absolute silliest way possible via The Brady Bunch theme song. Logical right?!?
Before reading the rest of this article, please play the karaoke version of The Brady Bunch theme song and sing along with these new lyrics:
Here’s the story, of a trumpet player,
Who was bringing up one very shy girl.
She would sing and dance and sing... not in public.
Always hiding her curls.
Until one day, she told her daddy.
That she made songs to put on his CDs.
There was Lizard Blues, and Sam the Dino,
And what a hit were these.
So this girl was gaining a lot of momentum.
Her creative juices just would not desist!
She decided that she must write a dance song.
That’s the way that it was born, a Little Twist!
Do a little Twist!
Do a little Twist!
That’s the way, it was born, a Little Twist!
My dad, Rob Sayer (the trumpet player in the aforementioned lyrics) started The Music Class when I was 8 years old, and as such I had the great pleasure of being the very first guinea pig for all things TMC. I was a super shy kid, but always singing and dancing around as long as NO ONE ELSE WAS LOOKING. Because, you see, I am a testament to what growing up in a house surrounded by music can do to a child. The stuffed bunny that never left my side as a toddler was named Dizzy Bunny. Was he named Dizzy Bunny because I liked to twirl until I got so dizzy I fell over? NOPE. It was because I was obsessed with the jazz trumpet player Dizzy Gillespie. True story. “Manteca” is still one of my favorite songs to this day. I had absolutely no idea how utterly strange it was for a 2-year-old to be obsessed with jazz; it was just normal to me because we played that kind of music all the time. It’s just what I grew up with.
In the spirit of Dizzy I will now toot my own horn. Some original Raina hits include Lizard Blues (Frog Collection), Sam the Dinosaur (Dinosaur Collection), I Have a Rocket (Bear Collection), Bear Feet (Bear Collection) and of course, Do a Little Twist from our current Bunny Collection. We even compiled all of the Raina originals into a special CD called The Raina Collection many years ago, but it ended up having a limited run due to limited demand lol. (If you are interested in a re-printing of The Raina Collection LET US KNOW AND WE WILL TRY TO MAKE IT HAPPEN!)
So, was I able to write all of these songs as an 8 - 10 year old because I was some sort of musical child genius?!? NOPE. I just grew up in an environment where I heard tons of different kinds of music all the time, and so when other kids started to make up stories and fantasies about their pets or rocket ships or dinosaurs, I just kind of started singing them instead of talking about them. It’s actually incredibly easy for a kid’s imagination and creativity to turn musical, if music is what they are used to anyways.
The moral of the story is that if your kids grow up in an environment where they hear lots of different styles of music and see their families singing and dancing all the time, then that’s naturally what they will end up doing too. Don’t be surprised if your little Music Class babies start making up their own songs as they get older! And certainly always encourage them to do so, no matter how silly or non-sensical it may seem to you!
With constant encouragement, your little Music Class baby may also one day grow up into a 30-year-old woman old who rewrites Brady Bunch lyrics when asked to do a serious blog post. May your musical creativity never die! :)
P.S. To all our Atlanta families, this year’s Holiday Ball on December 8th will feature a brand-new Big Band arrangement of “Do a Little Twist!” Get your tickets and come twist the "night" away!