Symphony City by Amy Martin
A girl gets lost on the subway as she travels with her father to a concert. Music is symbolized as different objects that convey the emotion she feels as she listens. This is a beautifully illustrated book and a wonderful way to introduce children to the different sounds of instruments.
Drum Dream Girl by Margarita Engle and illustrated by Rafael Lopez
Based on the true story of Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, a Chinese-African-Cuban girl, this book tells the story of a girl breaking tradition to follow her dreams of playing the drums. Millo is passionate about drumming, but in Cuba, females are not allowed to drum.
The girl dreams of playing freely and in public. Her father refuses to let her play with her sisters’ band, but eventually he allows her to have drum lessons. The girl’s teacher marvels at her skill and urges her on until finally she plays for an enthusiastic audience in a starlit garden café.
López’s vivid symbolic illustrations immerse readers in the world of the drum dream girl’s aspirations; she floats above the earth, drumsticks outstretched to the round face of the moon.
Classroom activities for the book can be found here: http://www.theclassroombookshelf.com/2016/02/drum-dream-girl-how-one-girls-courage-changed-music-2016-pura-belpre-illustrator-award/
Bats in the Band by Brian Lies
The bats are back and they’ve formed a band! Rhyme sets the rhythm for this special night of fun and dance. A soulful ballad brings tears, a performer entertains the little ones, and a chorus brings them all together. Wonderful details and education on different instruments and music genres.
Spunky Little Monkey by Bill Martin Jr and Michael Sampson
Monkey need help getting out of bed so Mama has some rhymes to help him wake up and be ready to start his day.
A great active read for spunky little monkeys out there. Children will want to participate and do the actions along with monkey.
Miguel and the Grand Harmony by Matt de la Pena
An original story based on the characters of the film, Disney Pixar’s Coco. Told from the point of view of La Música (presented in the form of a delicate golden sprite), the reader follows the spirit of music through the streets of a Mexican town.
One Bear Extraordinaire by Jayme McGowan
Bear is “a rambling musician, an entertainer, a legend.” When he comes up with a new song he feels that “something is missing.” He sets out to discover what this “something” is, he encounters various instrument-playing creatures who join with him to form a band.
Old MacDonald had a Farm by Gris Grimly
Preschoolers will love singing along as they join Farmer on his morning stroll across the farmyard and he greets each of his farm animals and gets them to join his parade. His farm is full of silliness and mayhem, filled with animals whose necks and legs are impossibly stretchy. His hens are stout (one is hatching something that… doesn’t seem to be a chicken), he finds his donkey chowing down in the pumpkin patch, and he gives a runt piglet to his cow to nurse. Little ones will enjoy when the parade ends in an unexpected twist ending!
Farmer Joe and the Music Show by Tony Mitton, illustrated by Guy Parker-Rees
Farmer Joe soon realizes that the way to liven up the farm is through music. With the help of his instrument-playing friends, Farmer Joe soon has the hens clucking, the pigs hoofing, and the cows mooing to a hillbilly music show.