Happy Birthday Didi..
If there is one kid show that even adults can enjoy, it actually is the Backyardigans. Created by Janice Burgess the Backyardigans is an animated series that feature 5 preschool 'kids' (different animals) who meet up in their communal backyards (you know, where people don't have fences) and make up a story and their backyard turns into one of those environments they imagine (castle, the Canadian Yukon etc). As a grown up you can appreciate and understand a child's view of how they play act and on top of that, it's done in an intelligent AND funny way.
One of their defining characteristics is their use of music. Every episode uses a musical genre; spaghetti western, reggea, flamenco, big band, zydeco etc. My daughter also got another Backyardigan dvd that featured the music genre 'rai'. When I told my son (who's 10 and also likes a lot of the music) that it sounded arabic, I had to look it up and voila, it was. Well, to be exact, this is RAI:
Raï (Arabic: رأي) is a form of folk music, originated in Oran, Algeria from Bedouin shepherds, mixed with Spanish, French, African and Arabic musical forms, which dates back to the 1930s and has been primarily evolved by women in the culture. The word raï is Arabic for “opinion.”
Singers of raï are called cheb (young) as opposed to sheikh (old) the name given to Chaabi music singers; the tradition arose in cities like Oran and elsewhere in Tlemcen, primarily among the poor. The word raï means literally opinion but is colloquially used as an interjection along the lines of oh, yeah! Traditionally sung by men, at the turn of the 20th century, female singers became common. Rai musicians, as early as the 1930's, were singing about social issues which affected their arab colonies. They ranged from disease to the police of the colonies.  Much like today's rap stars and hip-hop artists they sung about the current issues around them which was indeed revoluationary for their time. It's popularity not only taken the traditional sounds of the Middle East and "updated" it, but pop rai' reputation as a racy type of music has also influenced a fusion between rai and rock and several other "up and coming" styles
So that reminded me of a very popular song in the early 90s which I found on Youtube (gotta love it) so here's my offering of 'rai' to you for the weekend;
Khaled - Didi
Happy birthday rebeccalekkadingdong! (she said lovlingly)