Once again I sent my usual 10 page resume (not really) along with a request to be a judge for the Fids and Kamily Awards. Once again I got a polite but firm denial to this exclusive club because they don’t allow kindie musicians to be part of the club…sniff, sniff. Well even without my vote they are BY FAR the best award an artist could hope to win. There are no fees involved and there are multiple industry, blogger and qualified people voting on the music which is not always the case with a lot of the awards out there like. Many times only one or two people are reviewing all the music AND they charge a nice bit of coin. So congrats to the Fids and Kamily winners. Here is how I would have voted. Free of charge! My top ten CD’s of the year. Cue the music…
Top Ten Cd’s for this year
- Recess Monkey – WIRED (The best CD I heard this year)
- The Okee Dokee Brothers – Through The Woods (Not as great as the last one bur still amazing)
- Edie Carey & Sarah Sample – ‘Til the Morning: Lullabies and Songs of Comfort (Caught me by surprise. Outstanding vocals and music)
- Secret Agent 23 Skidoo – The Perfect Quirk (Great CD with smartest written song this year)
- Dog on Fleas -Buy one Get One Flea (Dean Jones showing his own Genius)
- The Hipwaders -Year Round Sounds (Just a great music with a California feel)
- Brady Rymer – Just say Hi (Still the most underrated kindie artist out there with another great CD)
- Laura Doherty – In a Heartbeat (Lyrics for kids. Music for everyone)
- Jon Samson – A New Kids Album (Sonically amazing)
- Mills Trills – Everyone Together Now (Superiors vocals and a big sound)
These are the my pics for the best CD’s out this year. For me the best CD by far this year is WIRED by Recess Monkey. Not because the others aren’t great but because this one is so musically, lyrically and sonically awesome good! I should also mention its Grammy nomination voting time. I still have some listening to do before I make my final Grammy Picks but rest assured WIRED has already made the grade. Everyone in the kindie world who is a voting NARAS member should have this as one of their nominations. I shall leave the other 4 to you. Lots of great music out there this year. Bands super worthy but not in my top ten include Josh and the Jamtones – Bear Hunt (I’m not big on narration but my kids laugh a lot), Baze and His Silly Friends – The Best Day Ever (just feel good music and my wife liked it!), Lucky Diaz and The Family Jam Band – Lishy Loo and Lucky Too (Thingamajig is an amazing song!), The Not-Its! - Raise Your Hand (Power Pop awesomeness) and finally Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights - Good Egg (Good songs and music on the whole disk). Now I still have a few Albums to check out before I vote for the other 4 Grammy nominees but you should go and check out any of these CD’s. Go support an independent artist today!
Posted in CD reviews, family, Kindie, Music
Tagged awards, Baze and His Silly Friends, Brady Rymer, children, Dean Jones, Dog on Fleas, Edie Carey, Fids, Grammy, Joanie Leeds, John Samson, Jon Samson, Josh and the Jamtones, Kamily, kindie, Laura Doherty, Lucky Diaz, Mills Trills, Mills Trils, music, Recess Monkey, Sarah Sample, Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, The Not-its, The Okee Dokee Brothers, Top Ten, top ten CD
In my efforts to spread the music of kindie and the fact I have now a large collection of said music. I have started a kindie library at the kids school! Included but not pictured is the message included which states:
Enjoy the music! If you like what you hear go support the artist and buy the CD/MP3/Tunes so that artist is able to continue and make art for us to listen too!
This month the library’s featured artists are The Grammy winning Okee Dokee Brothers - Can You Canoe? One of my family’s all-time favorites and a tremendous CD of Americana music. Plus it comes with a DVD of their trip down the Mississippi that inspired the music. The other is Heidi Swedberg and the Sukey Jump Band – My Cup of Tea. She is best known as Susan on the Seinfeld series but now makes incredibly fun and eclectic ukulele driven music for the whole family. Both CD’s are excellent and please go support a kindie artist today.
Posted in CD reviews, family, Kindie, Music, Recording
Tagged Americana music, Can you canoe?, Heidi Swedberg, Heidi Swedberg and Her Sukey Jump Band, kindie, music, My Cup of Tea, Seinfeld, The Okee Dokee Brothers
Dean Jones is busy these days recording other peoples music. When I called he was in a session with Molly Ledford (Lunch Money) and Billy Kelly who are working on a project (they had stepped out for lunch). He also works or has worked with with Story Laurie, Recess Monkey and those two Grammy winning children’s music impostors (they’re really great folk musicians in disguise) The Okee Dokee Brothers and many others. Dean’s really a go to guy when it comes to music production but he is also a most talented songwriter in his own right and likeable fellow as well. There aren’t a lot of smartly written love songs in the kindie music world that I know of. The two that come to mind are Pandas are Dangerous by The Boogers and I Must Be A Genuis by Dean Jones. While the Pandas song is totally Punk Rock (still sentimental) this one is more charming and sweet reminiscent of the 40’s piano driven pop song. I think Bing Crosby but I digress… When asked where the song came from Dean said “Out of the blue. Some of the best songs are BOOM. The Phrase just came out.” So he had the I must be a genius and the love me, love you too part so he needed music. He went to his default chord structure. A bunch of chords he was used to writing in (mine is E A D). Dean wasn’t always a kindie music guy. He had a band like all those other bands out there and one day his friend who owns a toy store told him “his songs where juvenile. Why not write songs for kids?” So that’s what he did and Dog on Fleas was Born. When not writing or producing music he also plays out professionally, accompanies a puppet company plus Dad and dishwashing duties. Dean is married with two kids one of whom is already songwriting at 7 yrs old and in his (Dean) words “Writes good stuff.” Me, I’m thinking Dean writes really cool offbeat tunes and with this song he is quite genius indeed with this shuffling drum, trombone highlighted, piano driven two minute masterpiece. Go check out this song on Buy One Get One Flea! Go check out all of his work and go support an independent artist today!
Posted in family, Music, Recording, song reviews, video
Tagged Billy Kelly, Children's, dangerous, kindie, Lunch Money, Molly Ledford, music, Pandas, Recess Monkey, Story Laurie, The Boogers, The Okee Dokee Brothers
Tomorrow September 20th at 1:15pm the Poochamungas take the stage at one of our favorite festivals. Looking forward to seeing lots of family and friends plus some great bands like our friend Joe Love and Imposter Radio (Best Cover Band in Chicago) and Sunday the Ed Burns Rhythm and Blues Review. They’ll have face painting, jump houses, reptile shows and more for the kids not to mention great food and beverages. My family has attended the last three years and it’s always a great time! So come hear some good music, grab a cold (or warm beverage) and enjoy one of the best neighborhood festivals Chicago has to offer! I look forward to seeing you there.
I was looking at youtube the other day and noticed some really great kindie videos aren’t getting the views they deserve cause they’re pretty darn good! Here are some of the family favorites
Justin Roberts - Obsessed by Trucks. Who doesn’t have that family member who drives them crazy with a particular obsession?
The Hipwaders – Educated Kid. Really great animations with a bit of humor. One of our favorite bands
The Boogers - Pandas are Dangerous. A great DIY shoot by The Boogers themselves and a punk rock love song disguised by Pandas!
Tim and the Space Cadets – Superhero. Tim is a busy guy these days with playing bass on Americas Got Talent (houseband), Tambourine Guy with the brilliant Post Modern Jukebox and hanging out with Chica (Sunny Side Up Show). But before all that he put out one of the all time best kindie videos ever! You be the judge…
Posted in Kindie, Music, song reviews, video
Tagged children, family, hero, Justin Roberts, kindie, music, Post Modern Jukebox, Super, The Boogers, the hipwaders, Tim and the Space Cadets, Tim Kubart, Trucks
The Hipwaders Rock! What more do you need to know? Their latest CD is worth the purchase. Fun lyrics, great vocals and harmonies not to mention that cool California grove that they’re famous for. We are big fans of this band and Year Round Sounds brings some new tunes, covers and holiday music our family has been digging. They now sit in the much coveted car CD slot! Willie Samuels does a great job once again of making the band sound great in the studio. Mic Check , Kings and Queens and The Books I Like to Read are three of my favorite songs. I find this a worthy follow up to The Golden State my only complaint being… Tito when’s the next release? They are having a CD release party this Saturday, September 13th in Vacaville, CA. Go buy this CD and support a kindie artist today!
Posted in CD reviews, family, gigs, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged all ages, California, Children's, family, kindie, music, rock, the hipwaders
I’m usually not one for writing expose’ pieces but I can hold quiet no longer. There are a few bands out there posing as “kiddie” bands of which I won’t mention but one band in particular MUST BE EXPOSED! I’m talking about those happy go lucky folk singing Okee Dokee Brothers. If you’re not familiar with them they like to go out on long trips and then write songs about the experience. Their first travel inspired album was about canoeing down the Mississippi (Can you Canoe? review) which won a Children’s Grammy. The most recent one is about hiking down the Appalachian Trail. How are kids supposed to learn about counting when the sublime acoustic sounds and harmonies of the title track Through the Woods takes us out of the city and into the forest? How can little Jenny, Billy or Isaac learn about colors if they insist singing about Smokey Mountain BBQ, mountain life, love and family in the song Ruby Jane? How are kids gonna learn to touch their knees and toes if they insist life sounds better in the eclectic, Dean Jones piano driven Out of Tune? These here are not “kiddie” songs and I’ll tell you what they are… Americana inspired by the music of the Appalachian. Songs that resonate with folk of all ages. Music that take the listener on a journey of wonder. I could go on about how great the CD is but you should go out buy it, listen to it and enjoy two of the best songwriters I know working with one of the best producers (Dean Jones) I know. There’s nothing wrong with “kiddie music” done right. But the biggest crime here is how many people will never listen to this CD because it’s labeled a Children’s CD when it is so much more. Go support a Kindie artist today!
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged Appalachian, bbq, Can you canoe?, Children's, Dean Jones, Grammy, hiking, kiddie, kindie, music, Okee Dokee Brothers, Smokey Mountains, through the woods, trail