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The Beat of Love

Musicians—from folksingers to rappers—are tuning in to adoption to create deeply personal reflections and hummable melodies. Turn to these songs when words aren't enough.

by Joanna Yeung

 

Don't miss The Beat of Love: Adoptive Families' exclusive iTunes iMix. (Must have iTunes downloaded on your computer.)

My Shirt Looks Good on You
// Catie Curtis (Rykodisc; $11.98)
// catiecurtis.com
Years before she was contemplating motherhood, Catie Curtis was inspired to write "Love Takes the Best of You" after her sister adopted from Cambodia. You don't look like me / And, baby, we don't look like you / But our love is so complete, she croons in this simple, soulful tune. On Curtis' latest album, Long Night Moon, the folksinger looks back at the wait to adopt her own daughter, from Guatemala.

Listen to
"Love Takes the Best
of You
"

Declaration
// Steven Curtis Chapman (Sparrow; $17.98)
// stevencurtischapman.com
A dad of three adopted girls and three biological children, Steven Curtis Chapman has become a leading advocate for adoption. In his tender ballad, "When Love Takes You In," the Christian songwriter explores the journey from an adoptee's perspective. The story—how a life is changed by a love that's not biological, but everlasting—will strike a chord with "forever families" everywhere.

Watch a video for "When Love Takes You In."
Requires Windows Media Player.

Checks, Thugs, and Rock n' Roll
// Darryl McDaniels (RomenMpire Records; $16.98)
// me-dmc.com
It wasn't until he was 35 that rapper Darryl McDaniels (of Run DMC) learned he'd been adopted. In "Just Like Me," he transforms Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle"—a folksong about a failed relationship between a parent and child—into a message of hope to adoptees everywhere. Fellow adoptee Sarah McLachlan collaborates on this hip remake.

Listen to
"Just Like Me"

Winds of Change
// Tim Chauvin (cdbaby.com; $16.98)
// timchauvin.com
Watching his new daughter, Marit, sleep in their hotel room during the adoption trip prompted Texas folksinger Tim Chauvin to write "Daughters of China." The song celebrates his love for all daughters—and birthparents—in China. Chauvin has adopted a second child, Mattie, and is currently on a six-month tour of China with his family, gathering material for his next album.

Listen to "Daughters of China"

The Red Thread
// Lucy Kaplansky (Red House Records; $17.98)
// lucykaplansky.com
New York City folksinger Lucy Kaplansky titled this album to evoke the Chinese belief that invisible red threads connect people who will become significant in each other's lives. "This Is Home," co-written with her husband, is an intimate reflection on welcoming their daughter into their family. Also check out Over the Hills, due in mid-March, to hear Kaplansky sing about how life has changed since becoming a mom.
Read AF's recent interview with Kaplansky.

Listen to "This Is Home"

For Kids
Same/Same
// Chuck Kent (cdbaby.com; $16.98)
Chuck Kent, a Chicago-based singer and adoptive dad of two, wrote the sweet, infectious songs on this album to help kids ages three to 10 open up about common adoption questions. Listen to "Ask Me Anything," in which he encourages children to pose silly—or serious—questions about, well, anything.

Listen to "Ask Me Anything"

NEW! Reader Recommendation
Check out "Waiting" by soon-to-be parents Thomas and Miki, who are in the process of adopting a toddler from Ethiopia. As one of the family's fundraising undertakings, Thomas, a songwriter and musician, wrote and recorded the song to convey the couple's feelings about connecting with and bringing home their little girl. The full song is available at adoptionsong.com for download for a small donation of $1.50.

Joanna Yeung is Adoptive Families' assistant editor.


 

 
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