Header Image

Latest News

"Foote Jams" Playlist

Fuel your morning ride. Electrify the midday dance break. Spice up dinner making. Music enlivens our experiences and connects us.

To build community, Families for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion has put together a music playlist with songs submitted by Foote parents that mean something to them.

We welcome additional submissions for the playlist. Please send family-friendly song choices to Rob Hames at robash22@yahoo.com with a short description of how the music is meaningful to you or your family.

Thanks to Janie Merkel and Kossouth Bradford for collaborating on this project, and to Michelle Bradford for the artwork on the playlist.

> Listen on Spotify


"Dos Oruguitas" by Sebastian Yatra
Contributed by Nitza Diaz

This is a song from the Disney movie Encanto. It is a song about how Abuelita (grandma) and her husband met and their love story. There is a Spanish version and an English version. I like the Spanish version. 


"Got to be Real" by Cheryl Lynn
Contributed by Aléwa Cooper

A family favorite, my parents would play this song when we had our family dance parties.


"Pompeii" by Bastille
Contributed by Birke Gregg

Each year I create a mindful advent calendar for my kids. This year it includes mostly conversation starters. Yesterday the conversation starter was: “What is your favorite song?” Wim replied, Pompeii by Bastille. He likes the song but is also interested in the story about the town that was swallowed up by lava. 


"Colombia, Mi Encanto" by Carlos Vives
Contributed by Nitza Diaz

A song about the beauty of Colombia from the movie Encanto.


"Video" by India Arie
Contributed by Rob Hames

This is a song about female empowerment that I've loved for a long time, especially since I've had a daughter for 30 years (yikes!). I think it should be compulsory listening for every American preteen girl.


"Carnaval del Barrio" by Daphne Ruben-Vega
Contributed by Nitza Diaz

This is a song about all the Latinos in New York who work hard and struggle, who may feel powerless, but are resilient.


"Don't Worry" by Madcon
Contributed by Birke Gregg

Cosma’s pick was Don’t worry by Madcon. When it first came out, little Cosma always sang along but understood “Don’t worry ‘bout a dang” instead of “about a thing”. Since then, every time someone is worried or stressed in our family, we say: “Don’t worry ‘bout a dang!”


"Patria y Vida" by Doscemer Bueno, El Funky, etc. 
Contributed by Nitza Diaz

Winner of the Latin Grammy for song of the year, this song talks about the struggle of Cuban citizens and their love for their island.


"King & Lionheart" by Of Monsters and Men
Contributed by Birke Gregg

Anina picked this song because she has absolutely loved this song since she first heard it. 


"She'd Say" by Andy Grammer (with Ladysmith Black Mambazo)
Contributed by Rob Hames

My father passed away without meeting three of my four kids.  I often think of how he would have loved them and how adored he would have been by them.  This song is about what the artist’s mother would have said if she had known his children.  It gets me every time.  Plus, Ladysmith Black Mambazo sing on it - hello?  


"Andar com Fé (I'll Keep My Faith)" by Gilberto Gil
Contributed by Beth Mello

It’s an upbeat song that conjures up feelings of confidence and “can do.” Gilberto Gil is also a Brazilian legend.  He began his career as a bossa nova musician and grew to write songs that reflected a focus on political awareness and social activism. He was a key figure in the Música popular brasileira and tropicália movements of the 1960s, alongside artists such as longtime collaborator Caetano Veloso. The Brazilian military regime that took power in 1964 saw both Gil and Veloso as a threat, and the two were held for nine months in 1969 before they were told to leave the country. Gil moved to London, but returned to Bahia in 1972 and continued his musical career, as well as worked as a politician and environmental advocate.


You Need Me by Black Coffee
Contributed by Kossouth Bradford

Black Coffee was the first artist I heard from the African electronic music scene. I was excited because it blended traditional African tribal sounds which I was exposed to as a child with electronic music that my brother turned me onto in my early 20's. Black Coffee found the perfect blend for my taste.


"Before I Let Go" by Frankie Beverly and Maze
Contributed by Aléwa Cooper

"This is a song that is played at every celebration that can get every generation of my family dancing and singing together. I hear that song and am instantly transported to the best moments of my life."

"La Tierre del Olvido (The Land Of Oblivion)" by various artists, Playing For Change
Contributed by Maria Ospina

"It's a very famous Colombian song that's beautifully performed by a number of musicians (through the Playing for Change project). 


Desert Pete by The Kingston Trio
Contributed by Bill Rankin.

When I was growing up, my parents would often play the Kingston Trio on roadtrips, and we’d all sing along (at full volume!). This song, about finding a way through a parched desert with the help of strangers who came before, always connects me to the best of the American folk tradition, and it especially resonates with the values I want to instill in my own children: social trust, generosity, and perseverance for the long trail ahead.


Canción Sin Miedo/Fearless song by Vivir Quintana ft. El Palomar.
Contributed by Juan Arboleda
The song was performed for the first time at the emblematic Plaza del Zócalo in Mexico City on March 7th, 2020 in celebration of International Women’s Day or 8M. Since then it has become an anthem, a rallying cry, and a symbol of the struggle for justice and unity among women in the Americas and around the world.
The lyrics and melodies sparked a generational change, a collective awareness on the alarming rates of femicides around the world.
“Nos sembraron miedo, nos crecieron alas”(“They sowed fear in us, we grew wings”) a line from the song that has become a popular slogan in protests, uniting women for a common cause, justice and equality.
The song has been adopted and its lyrics modified on a series of viral videos from different countries that speak directly to their own victims and struggles, becoming something more than the artists originally intended, and growing into its own global inspiration for all the subsequent adaptations.


"Water No Get Enemy" by Fela Kuti
Contributed by Beth Mello

"Every Wednesday on my way to work I listen to WPKN's Afrobeats show with Ebong Udoma. I listen to it because it always raises my spirits and changes my outlook beyond myself  into the opportunities the world offers."


"Un País con el Nombre de un Rio (A Country With A River Name) by Jorge Drexler
Contributed by Maria Casasnovas, Lorenzo Caliendo, Sofia Caliendo (4Y), Mateo Caliendo (2Y)

"We are from Uruguay and here are some examples of songs that we Iike and that we listen to when we are a bit homesick: This is a very melancholic song, Jorge Drexler emigrated to Spain to advance his musical career and often sings about what he misses and how we all come from different places."


"Treat People With Kindness" by Harry Styles
Contributed By Cara Hames

"To me, this song represents our family values of kindness, positivity, and love. It also connects to our love of music as we enjoy discovering artists and experiencing albums as a family. The bonus is the video for this song breaks some gender stereotypes!"


The Seed by K’Naan
Contributed by Martin Nguyen

Given that most of my side of the family came to the US as refugees, K'Naan's song has been especially meaningful. It's a celebratory song of resilience and perseverance born out of the refugee experience.


"La Flor de la Canela (Cinnamon's Flower)" by Juan Diego Florez with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra
Contributed by Ximena Benavides Reverditto

"The composer, Chabuca Granda, is Peru’s most famous composer (and my children’s grand grandmother). Although the original version is famously interpreted by Chabuca, I’m sharing a version performed by the Peruvian opera singer Juan Diego Florez, considered one of the world’s opera’s greatest talents. Peruvians are super proud of both of them. This is a link to the lyrics in English. 'Limeña' means woman natural from Lima, Peru’s capital (where Patrick—my husband— and I were born)."

Scarlet Begonias by the Grateful Dead
Contributed by Andy Bromage

"As a teenager, I found a sense of belonging with other fans of the Grateful Dead—old and young; black, white and brown; blue collar and white collar; lost and found. We were bound by an appreciation for this distinctly American band and their brand of cosmic rock-n-roll music. Long live the Dead!"


Ngizw’ Ekhaleni by Bhekumuzi Luthuli
Contributed by Richard Andersson

Richard writes: Bhekumuzi Luthuli was a South African musician, his guitar and bass rhythms and the awesome choral backing vocals exemplify a type of traditional music style known as Maskandi in KwaZulu Natal. This song reminds me of my home and the incredible peoples of South Africa, we raised our children listening to this.


La Gozadera - Gente De Zona, Marc Anthony
Contributed by Nitza Diaz


Racist, Sexist Boy by The Linda Lindas
Contributed by Christine Kim

It’s the one song that has strongly expressed and addressed our frustration and fear about the hate, xenophobia, racism, and sexism that we have experienced both on micro and macro levels as women and girls of color.


Soy Yo by Bomba Estéreo
Contributed by Juan Arboleda

Juan writes: If you’re ever in need of a pick-me-up, I suggest you immediately watch the viral music video for Bomba Estéreo’s “Soy Yo”, said Bomba Estéreo’s frontwoman, Liliana Saumet.
The clip for the funky and empowering anthem stars an 11-year-old Latina girl, who, after getting her hair done, has been filled with a newfound sense of confidence.
“Soy Yo” is a favorite among our daughters and has been introduced repeatedly in Spanish class at Foote since its release in 2016.
Directed by Danish filmmaker Torben Kjelstrup, the song quickly became a viral hit, and garnered more than 117 million views on YouTube. “It was so lovely to see everyone relating to her,” said Saumet. “Everyone started posting old photos of themselves or sharing similar experiences that happened in their childhood. I think it’s made everyone reflect about this kind of bullying behavior; and not just those who have suffered it, but those who have bullied others as well.”
Saumet explained she also wrote “Soy Yo” as a way to empower more women around the world. “A long time ago I stopped caring about what others thought of me,” she said. “This song is especially for women, who have been so mistreated for so long. It’s important for all of us to say, ‘this is me’; I don’t want to be treated this way, I don’t want to be a sexual object, I don’t want to be what men want me to be—I just want to accept and love myself.”


Until My Heart Grows Quiet by The Promise Is Hope
Contributed by Rob Hames

"This song was written and recorded by my daughter Ashley along with her husband, Eric. Ashley and I spent a lot of time together in my car when she was growing up and I shared a lot of my favorite music with her driving all over Connecticut. This song reminds me of those precious days, father and daughter alone together jamming out to tunes."


"Mngani Wami (My friend)" by Sun-El Musician
Contributed by Kossouth Bradford

"Sun El-Musician is a South African DJ/producer who I stumbled upon a few years ago. I really enjoy the pace and the mood of his music. I find myself gently moving, reflecting and appreciating when listening to him. During the pandemic, his albums and the artist he works with have been a vital part of the 'village' that has kept me afloat."


"Cielo De Un Solo Color (Single color sky)" by No Te Va Gustar
Contributed by Maria Casasnovas, Lorenzo Caliendo, Sofia Caliendo (4Y), Mateo Caliendo (2Y)

"This song is from a rock group that usually mixes different styles of music that are traditional in Uruguay like tango, murga and candombe. We like this song because it reminds us a lot of Uruguay and it’s especially associated with soccer. It is usually played when the national team plays."


How Will It End by Mighty Purple
Contributed by Rob Hames

When I was in my early twenties (a hundred years ago), I played in a band and during a gig, met a couple of brothers (Steve and John Rodgers) about 12 or 13 years old who came up to me during a break and wanted to know everything about starting a band.  It turns out they lived a block or two away from me and they would come by once in while drilling me for knowledge. Long story short, they became the founders and leaders of an amazing band called Mighty Purple and now are musicians in their own right, John writes soundtracks and Steve, after owning a music venue (the Space) for years, is a recording artist. These two teenagers both became lovely adults who care about others and the world around them and this song of theirs, about the folly of war, nationalism and separating ourselves from each other based on religion and creed, is a favorite of mine.


Color Esperanza - Various Artists
Contributed by Nitza Diaz


A Very Bisexual Song by Amber Fornoles
Contributed by Ke Xu

Here is a beautiful song from an Asian American girl about identity and sexual orientation.  It’s nice to see young people use music platforms to have their voices be heard and to break down stereotypes.


Clocks by Coldplay
Contributed by Birke Gregg

2 years ago, one of my Foote kids needed tutoring during the summer. The wonderful tutor worked out of the Guilford public library. Since I have 4 kids, I brought all of them along. We’d arrive 5 minutes before the library opened its doors. There was a piano in front of the library and every time we were there, my daughter practiced ‘Clocks' by Coldplay on this piano in front of the library.

To this day, every time I hear this song, I have the image of her in front of the library, happily playing piano outside.


Preciosa - Marc Anothony 
Contributed by Nitza Diaz

Back to Latest News  

Since 1916, The Foote School has provided child-centered education that nurtures creativity, excellence and joy in learning.

Follow Us on Facebook