21 kids TV themes that could lighten up a DJ set

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Our first real musical experiences didn’t occur in fabric’s Room 1, or in front of a large stack of Funktion-Ones. By and large, they happened in our living rooms, in front of the television, after school and on a Saturday morning.

We take a brief detour from our usual up-to-date service, with a throwback to the crème of children’s television music. This music was written by people fully aware of the influence it could have, much of it serving as the absolute fundamentals of our listening experience. With half an eye on the dance floor, here’s a pile of our favourites to give you some secret weapon fodder during your next warm-up or peak time set.

Rugrats

A revolutionary cartoon in its own right, Rugrats had the music to boot with its odd but wonderfully curated sounds.

Chucklevision

Quintessential British television, set to a charismatic, late eighties theme.

Oakie Doke

An opening song could have been written by Paul McCartney.

Pingu

Is it just me or can I hear the foundations of minimal techno in here?

Fireman Sam

If Tears for Fears did Kids TV Themes.

Arthur

One of the first big primary school anthems.

Batman: The Animated Series

Nothing was cooler than this show. Dark, heavily stylized and cinematic.

Funnybones

A very old one. Steve Reich eat your heart out.

Pinky & The Brain

So many WB Classics to chose from. This one teaching kids descending minor scales.

Biker Mice from Mars

Has a very Detroit techno feel to it.

Round The Twist

Convinced this would go off at 5am.

Rainbow

Flute solos, melancholy piano chords, Simon & Garfunkel-esque vocals, this is one classy intro.

The Racoons

Is that Suzy Q making a mid-80s comeback? Probably not, but this is guitar-shredding mullet pop at its finest.

The Really Wild Show

Borrowed from the original by Tony Sherman, this one’s got as much funk as Michael Jackson’s ‘Working Day and Night’

Thomas The Tang Engine

More chug than a DJ Harvey set.

Grange Hill (1990s)

If PC Music did early 90s electro.

Byker Grove

Another with show with plenty of versions across the years, but this one from the early 90s is crying out for a dub mix. Teaching kids how to sing in a Geordie accent.

Get Your Own Back

Dunking your teachers and parents in sludge to hard 90s trance house.

The Magic Roundabout

There’s a school of thought that argues the rhythms at play here were the pre-cursor to ska.

My Wife and Kids

Hard not to pick the Dilla-esque original, but those horns in the more version just gives it the edge.

64 Zoo Lane

Probably my pick from the list from a musical perspectve. Slightly after our time, but if you had little sisters, this was a nice theme to wake up to.

 

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