Making Flamenco Christmas Songs with Kids🎵 Little Drummer Boy and El Tamborilero 🎅 + Video🎄

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! As part of our “father and sons” bonding time, my kids and I make music in both English and Spanish throughout the year. We are slow in publishing these songs because, hey, I’m a fulltime father and we have other things to do. 😊 Here’s one (music and video on Youtube) that we managed to finish before this Christmas–a children’s flamenco Christmas version of the popular Christmas song “The Little Drummer Boy” mixed with the Spanish equivalent “el Tamborilero“.

A father with a huge Christmas hat covering his face with an old church and its bell tower behind him, under Andalusian blue sky.

What fun things you can do with your kids if you were a happily unemployed, full-time father! 😊

With the children singing in a difficult rhythm of flamenco (the Bulerias) this creates a new and refreshing family-friendly take on the old classic song. It is an acoustic/flamenco-guitar driven “Villancico Navideño” (Spanish Christmas carols) in the style of Zambomba (Christmas songs done in festive flamenco as uniquely done in Jerez de la Frontera, Andalucia, Spain). This one is por Bulerias de Jerez. ¡Olé! Enjoy the festivities!

With these songs we hope to breathe new life to old songs and giving these as gifts to our family and friends–old and new and yet-to-be-met. Something for the kids, the family and friends to remember and maybe enjoy during holidays.

CREDITS//AUDIO: Recorded, mixed, produced and mastered by Free Electrons Family with the help of Pepe Cabral in 2020, Barrio San Miguel, Jerez de la Frontera (land of sherry, flamenco and dancing horses), Spain.

Father and Sons Bond by Making Music

So, the boys are 2 years older now from our first music-video: Joy to the World. That makes it easier in one way and harder in another. Easier in that, the boys, especially the younger one at 5, can memorize more lines now. Harder in that they are interested in doing more things now which divides their attention.

Father and sons bonding time: 15-minute recording sessions with the boys keeps the experience fun. . . well, most of the time that is.

We still record the songs using our our old-dinosaur-of-a-home-recording studio (a Roland VS-1680). For this year, I began building a “cage” or an isolation booth for the vocals using the IKEA play mattresses and lots of blankets. Yup, we don’t have much money to buy things and we like using what we already have. Besides the boys get to participate in the process and we talk about how sound works for a bit.

So I’m still a happily unemployed full time father (as part of our family lifestyle change when we quit our jobs in the good ol’ USA and moved to Spain 4 years ago). I do spend a lot of time with my two young boys already, especially when they come home from school and Mama is doing her part-time work. Then, as you all know, Coronavirus/Covid-19 hit us all and gave us the gift of time.. . more of it with our children.

A young boy  in a white "Polska" shirt with a Santa Claus hat and headphones on singing in front of a microphone in a home recording studio.

During our music recording session the boys learn the process of laying down the vocal and instrumental tracks one by one.

A couple of good songs came out of it. This one and a flamenco take on an old Spanish lullaby called “A La Nanita Nana” and a few more that we have yet to record.

🎅 LITTLE DRUMMER BOY/EL TAMBORILERO with Lyrics/LETRA + Guitar CHords/Acordes 🌲

Here are the lyrics (letra in Spanish) to the Little Drummer Boy (El Tamborilero) so you can sing-along too. For you guitarists: I’ve put the guitar chords needed to the side of the corresponding line.

Come they told me (pa-rum-pum-pum-pum) [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

A newborn King to see (pa-rum-pum-pum-pum) [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

Our finest gifts we bring (pa-rum-pum-pum-pum) [La———- / A——-]

To lay before the King (pa-rum-pum-pum-pum) [La-La-Sol / A-A-G]

(Rum-pum-pum-pum. Rum-pum-pum-pum) [Re——La / D—–A]

For to honor Him (pa-rum-pum-pum-pum) [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

When we come. [La——Re /A—–D]

[Falsetta/melody 1] = [Re/D 3x – La/A] [La/A 3x – Re/D]

[Re/D 3x – La/A] [Sol/G – Re/D – La/A – Sol/G – Re/D – Sol/G]

[Tib/Bb – La/A – Re/D – Re#/D# – Re/D] -Re/D. . .

El camino que lleva a Belen [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

Baja hasta el valle que la nieve cubro [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

Los pastorcillos quieren ver a su rey [La———- / A——-]

Le traen regalos en su humide zurron [La-La-Sol / A-A-G]

(Rom-pom-pom-pom. Rom-pom-pom-pom) [Re——La / D—–A]

Ha nacido en un portal de Belen [Re-Sol-Re / D-G-D]

El niño de Dios. [La——Re /A—–D]

[Falsetta/melody 2] = [Re/D 4x ] [La/A 4x]

[Re/D 4x ] [La/A 4x]

[Tib/Bb – La/A – Re/D – Reb/Db – Re/D] -Re/D. . .

Two young boys with Christmas hats on, one laughing, on a high ground overlooking the Mediterranean sea with ships on it and a mountain range in the background.

Shooting video for the Jingle Bells-Dulce Navidad Villancico-Christmas music mix with kids on Skywalk, Gibraltar.

The Process of Recording Music in a home Studio with Kids

It takes a lot of time to record and produce the songs in our home studio, especially when working with kids and ensuring that they do NOT get pressured into doing something that they do NOT want to do. That means I have about 15 minutes a day for practice and recording their part. It’s also a pain-in-the-you-know-what to set everything up (the isolation cage, mics, etc) and tear them down again after a few hours because we don’t have enough space in our apartment. Read more about it here: our easy method of making music with the kids.

A young boy in a red shirt with a Santa Claus hat and headphones on singing in front of a microphone in a home recording studio.

Laying down his vocal tracks to last year’s Jingle Bells-Dulce Navidad.

MAKING musicVIDEO WITH KIDS USIng free footage

Making our own music videos has become much easier now after 3 years of making family videos. It’s even easier now that we discovered several sources for high-quality and FREE video footages, even those with drone shots. But as a slow-go family, of course we have not check them all out. Instead we focus on using one FREE VIDEO provider called PIXABAY. Check out what kind of quality videos you can use for FREE. And even if we do NOT NEED to credit the authors, of course it’s just right to do so. So, here are the sources on PIXABAY of the wonderful videos we used for the Little Drummer Boy (El Tamborilero).

To make it easier for the boys, I simply added video footgae that we already have while recording their vocals. As my younger child would say, “Ya esta!” (That’s it!)

CREDITS//VIDEOS: From PIXABAY: drummer toys by Julius H; happy children sunset sea by Moshe Harosh; boy run water child by Suleman Jan; child running grass cold by Typhn Baran; blue planet by RPXStudio; girl running forest by Tancox; 4K drone lighthouse Video by Bellergy RC; boy window water by MD SHAHRIAR ISLAM; water bubbles blue by Vimeo-Free-Videos; sky star clouds by Life-Of-Vids; cold mountain girl cat snow by Sascha Quednau; 4K drone mountain road car by invisiblepower; rainfall night by DistillVideos; HD forest peek greenish by Matthias Groeneveld; snow mountain sun pullout shotby invisiblepower; mountain alps sun clouds by Hans Braxmeier; Christmas trees on snow mountain by invisiblepower; dove peace animated video by Jeff Jacobs; Mary Joseph baby animated video by Jeff Jacobs; nativity full manger starlight by Jeff Jacobs; Santa Claus in forest by Dieter_G; child run forest barefeetby Júlio da Feliz.

Laying down the vocals for our flamenco version of The Little Drummer Boy mixed with El Tamborilero (mixed English-Spanish). This year we have the “cage”–an improvised vocal isolation booth.

free electrons Christmas Music Playlist

Here below is our first foray into music-making with Joy to the World” por Rumba Flamenca, mixed with popular local Villancicos Navideños medley of “Ven, ven, ven… en noche buena vente pa Jerez”, “Ande, ande, ande… la Marimorena and Ya Vienen Los Reyes Magos.” It was the original idea for mixing songs and traditions that the kids came up with. We had a lot of fun doing recording the music and making the video, and made fun of ourselves (us parents) by attempting to sing and ending up quite out of tune. Oh well, take one for the kids, right?!!

Joy to the World (New Style) Villancicos – Christmas Songs Mix by Kids🎅Spanish-English👍Family Video (YouTube)
Joy to the World (New Style) Villancico – Christmas Song by Kids; Family Fun Video Shot in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain
Jingle Bells with Lyrics 🎅 Dulce Navidad con Letra🎵 New Villancico-Christmas Songs Kids🌲Family Video
Jingle Bells – Dulce Navidad: New Villancico-Christmas Song Mix by Kids shot in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain and Gibraltar, UK

Jingle Bells – Dulce Navidad is our second Christmas music video that we finished last year. The boys sang in both English and Spanish and the added some words of their own to the Spanish version. Itshot in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain and Gibraltar, UK. Read more about it here: Father and Sons Bonding Time; Jingle Bells-Dulce Navidad Mix; Making Music+Video with Kids

🎅 Santa Claus is Coming to Town 🎄 Children’s Flamenco Christmas version free electrons family music
Por Rumba Flamenca: Video footage from Morocco.

THANKS for watching. BIG SMILE! 👍

👍 DO SUBSCRIBE to the channel and the blog. It gives the happily unemployed father of these kids… some kind of hope. 😊 Also, so you get notified when the new ones come in!

May peace be with us all!

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