Hey there folks! The Poochamungas are gonna be rocking once again this Saturday, November 12th @ 11am in the fantastic Joe’s Live in Rosemont. There will be good food, games, photo booth, milk and cookies and of course great music from the Poochamungas. Bring the whole family and bring your dancing shoes! It’s gonna be epic!
Posted in family, gigs, kids, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged family, Joe's Live, kids, kindie, mb park, music, Poochamungas, Rosemont
Photo by David Kindler
Tomorrow is going to be 70 degrees and sunny. What better way to celebrate such beautiful weather than head on over to the Chicago Botanic Garden. Not only is it one of the most visually stunning places you have the added fun of the Poochamungas! Come on by as we hit the stage at 5:30pm for a two hour jam-a-stravaganza!!! Get there a little earlier and enjoy the amazing gardens. The show is free to anyone entering the gardens but it does cost $20 per car for parking so be sure to fill the minivan. If your a CBG member (which my family is) the parking is free as well. Get your plans in order and head on down to the Garden tomorrow. Hope to see you there!
Posted in family, gigs, kids, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged Chicago Botanic Garden, gig, kindie, music, Poochamungas, stunning places
I went to the Arlington Heights Public Library today to drop off a few Poochamungas Cd’s they’ll be giving out for reading awards during the summer. I always try to help out libraries as much as possible. For one they are a valuable resource in many places and secondly they always support the many kindie musicians plying their trade around the country. The Poochamungas have definitely played more than a couple library gigs. So after dropping off CD’s I took a perusal of what kids music they had available. Well right away you notice Disney and that kidz bob (cutesy no talent edited recycled garbage IHOP). What then struck me was the number of kindie artists available as well. Casper babypants, the Not-Its, Justin Roberts, Recess Monkey, Bari Koral, Ralph’s World and many others. They had a great selection of FREE kindie music for anyone interested in introducing their family to high quality family music. I also know the Des Plaines Public Library carries some great music as well. If you live in either of these neighborhoods check out them out! You won’t be dissapointed.
As for the other free music my favorite cast of characters takes the stage at Simons tomorrow at 8:30pm as Electric Dirt. They’ll be singing the songs that Levon Helm sang all to well and celebrating what would of been his recent 75th birhtday. This ones free as well but be sure to drop a few dollars in the hat. It’ll be worth it!
Posted in family, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged casper babypants, children, Electric Dirt, Justin Roberts, kids, kindie, library, music, Poochamungas, Recess Monkey, The Not-its
Norwood Park Fall Festival 2014. L to R: John Joyce, Don Zaloudek, Anna Fermin, Jim Steinkraus, Frank Izzo, Rich Rankin. photo by Betty Boduch
Last summer because of music I had the opportunity to play at Lollapalooza with a bunch of great Chicago musicians on the Kidzapalooza stage. One of the fine folks who played keyboards is a great guy by the name of Rich Rankin. He was backing all the Chicago Kindie Musicians at this event and is a regular member of Laura Doherty’s band and produces her CD’s. When we were at the rehearsal he says to me “You know Jim Steinkraus.” Jim is the first alternate guitarist for the Poochamungas recommended to the band by bassist Don Zaloudek. Pete is our regular guitarist but because of life he can’t make some gigs so I call Jim who is awesome. Always has a smile and a story to tell. A gracious man who is fun to be around and enjoys playing. Rich then told me he got into music because of Jim Steinkraus and what a great guy he is and how they are related. So later that year, at another gig, my keyboard player Alton is unavailable due to life. I make a call to Rich who agrees to fill in. It also happens that Pete is also unavailable so the call goes out to Jim. Wouldn’t you know it that at rehearsal we find out that this is the first time these two guys are playing on stage together! There was a lot of laughing and a good time had by all both at the rehearsal and the gig. Music had brought us full circle once again. Which is why most of us play. The social interactive aspect of creating something good together for a moment and then it’s gone. Never to be duplicated. Jim created many of those good moments in his life. He is a man never to be duplicated. Jim Steinkraus passed away yesterday to the shock of the many people who loved him. The evil that is cancer took another one of the good ones much too soon. I remain grateful to the fact that in Jim’s lifetime I got to share the music. Jim was an amazing person and he will be missed. Thanks for taking a moment to play with us Poochamungas. It will be cherished. God Bless.
Photo by David Kindler
We’ve been a pretty busy band this month but today we get the opportunity to jam in our home turf. Being from the Northwest side I am pretty psyched we get to play at the Firewater Saloon. The event runs from 9am till Noon and the BIG GUY in RED will be making an appearance as well! No cover charge and a $4 dollar pancake breakfast makes this the best deal of the Holiday Season!!! Stop on by and be sure to say hi to the band.
In a town (Chicago) filled with great kids music we are truly blessed with the variety and quality of the acts that play in the neighborhood. Laura Doherty, Little Miss Ann, Istvan and his Imaginary Band, Human Tim+Robot Tim, Miss Jaime, Mister Singer, Jeanie B! and national acts Ralph’s World and Justin Roberts (two time Grammy nominee). So the fact that my family and I are excited to see Dan Zanes and friends this Saturday is a bit of a big deal. He is referred to as the founder of the modern Kindie (kids independent) movement and one of the first to play great all ages shows. He is also an artist that inspired me to get into the kindie movement when I heard my band mate (pre-Poochamungas) Pete play Wagon Wheel. A song I profiled on the blog earlier this year in my Song and the Process series (see article here). I’ve seen Dan play solo and with Elizabeth Mitchell but never with the full band so this is a treat. We’ve probably listened to the Catch That Train CD a thousand times. Watched the Jump Up video just as much. My daughter is a big fan and I’m sure my son is about to become one as well. The thing about Dan’s music is it’s all rooted in Americana. Whether rock, traditional, folk it’s always got terrific roots. Dan’s secret is simple. Play great music that everyone can enjoy. So head to the Harris Theater this Saturday, November 15th at 2pm. It’s gonna be a whole lot of fun for the whole family. Now go out and support an Independent artist today!
Posted in family, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged children, Concert, Dan Zanes, Elizabeth Mitchell, family, friends, Human Tim, Istvan and his Imaginary Band, Jeanie B!, Justin Roberts, kindie, Laura Doherty, Little Miss Ann, Miss Jaime, Mister Singer, music, Poochamungas, Ralphs World, Robot Tim
It’s been quiet here on the blog as I processed post Lollapalooza and the end of the summer. Now that the kids are back in school and the Poochamungas have 2 shows coming up I shall be writing again. I am also looking to broaden the page to be more than just music but can’t seem to get wordpress to work the way I need it too. In the meantime I have a new Hipwaders CD to talk about (Yeah!!!) and we’ve been listening to Brady Rymer’s latest Just Say Hi!. Hope you all had a great summer and great Labor Day weekend and see you back here soon!
What a great time we had at Jeff Fest again! The band sounded good and the sound folks did an excellent job. Not to mention Rob and Sharon made us feel like a million bucks and quickly took care of any problems at hand. It is really one of the best festivals in the City and many thanks to the Jefferson Park Chamber for making it happen. If you have kids this is a must festival. For a mere $5 entry you get the bounce houses, arts and crafts, a fantastic family stage with many interactive acts not to mention the great music coming from the mainstage! With plenty of great food and beverages available I highly recommend you to put this one on next years calendar.
I would be highly remiss here if I failed to mention the show my friend and fellow Poochamungas bandmate put together back on July 16th. Alton Smith gathered some of the best musicians in the city (some of my favorite people too!) and once again paid tribute to the music of Bill Withers. For a mere $10 at the City Winery one got to behold the power and majesty of a tour de’ force musical experience. When and if they perform again I shall let you know and you should make haste to wherever they are playing. Thank you Bill, Wally, John, John, Gerald, Mike, Steve, Manny and Alton for doing what you do so well!
This Friday I get to play on the Kidzapalooza stage at Lollapalooza with some of my favorite Chicago Kindie Folk! Many thanks to Laura Doherty for setting it up and for Tor Hyams for having us perform. If you’re at Lolla stop on by Friday at 1:30pm. I will be performing along with some super talented Chicago folks including Little Miss Ann, Mr. Singer, Jeanie B!, and Ralph of Ralph’s World not to mention Laura herself! Make a visit it’ll be a lot of fun!
Posted in gigs, Kindie, live music, Music
Tagged Alton Smith, chamber, city winery, family, Jeanie B!, Jeff Fest, jefferson park, kids, kidzapalooza, kindie, Kingsize Sound Labs, Laura Doherty, Little Miss Ann, lollapalooza, Mr Singer, music, Poochamungas, Ralphs World, slab fork
I did it. I just addressed the CD to be sent to The Recording Academy so I can let my peers vote on my CD to be nominated for a Grammy. What are my chances? Not very good. We have an excellent product and by we I mean all the folks who worked on it – Alton Smith, Pete Cunningham, Don Zaloudek, Frank Izzo, Nancy Rose, Frank Rose and John Abbey. We also had some super help in vocals with Anna Fermin and Emily Hurd. Is It Grammy worthy? Well I like to think so but that really has no bearing on who wins. Justin Roberts put out a power pop masterpiece last year and lost to a lesser album. Not that the winner’s wasn’t really good. Just not as good in my opinion. Which others would perhaps disagree. But I digress… The great thing about recorded music is that eventually the truly great pieces transcend time. Grammy or no Grammy. Why do I enter mine if I’m pretty sure I’m not going to win? I’m a dues paying member so why not? No one ever won anything by staying home. If you’re a voting member please make Poochamungas one of your 5 selections. Thank you.
Posted in CD reviews, family, Kindie, marketing, Music, Recording
Tagged Children's Music, Grammy, Justin Roberts, kindie, music, Poochamungas, Recording Academy
Tonight is the benefit for Brickton Montessori School called The Big Leap. A bit of wordplay there because the schools mascot is a frog. A Fierce Frog to be exact. Fighting Frogs don’t quite fit the school and I for one like the uniqueness of the Fierce Frog. Well I decided the frog needed a theme song and in one of those motivated/inspirational/get’r done moments I wrote a song for the aforementioned Fierce Frogs. Having the song wasn’t enough because once written it NEEDED to be recorded (if only in my head). My kids really liked the song and my wife did as well so… after calling a couple studios on short notice with no luck I called a friend (Kevin Carney) who does remote recordings and with the help Cheryl Lacost (Head of the School) arranged for the song to be recorded at our school. The I got fellow parent Dave Degand to sing on it and Brickton Teacher John Huber to play on it (banjo was his idea) as well plus Frank and Don of the Poochamungas. A rough track was sent to everyone involved so they could practice at home and John and I got a rehearsal in on Friday and Saturday last week we laid it down. This as in last Saturday! The recording went well. John Huber’s banjo playing ended up driving the song as well as Dave’s expressive vocals. It was still missing something (again my artistic vision). Just needed to add some piano because in my head the piano is needed and managed to get Alton Smith (Poochamungas) to play and add harmonies and John Abbey to record on a Wednesday afternoon and then delivered those tracks to Kevin that night which he mixed and had to me by the next morning. You would think that’s enough but if your gonna have a theme song you should have a video to go with it. Wednesday I also spent the morning shooting clips in the school for the song which we had just recorded. Many thanks to Chris Wyer for coming out with his awesome HD camera and helping capture a Brickton School Day. So Kevin finished the song Wednesday night. Phew… But that’s not all. Fellow Brickton parent Joe Somers is edited all the video to go along with the song for the fundraiser tonight! TONIGHT! Saturday, February 15th at 6:30pm. TONIGHT!!! Which he has just dropped off and it looks AWESOME!!! All I can say is thank you to eveyone who helped it was a lot of work but a lot of fun. If yor interested in seeing the video it’s World Premiere will be at the benefit tonight and tickets are still available on the Brickton website.
Here is a shameless plug and link to all the artists that sent me CD’s for the benefit. Many thanks!!! Go support one of these kindie artists today!!!
Posted in family, Kindie, Recording, songwriting
Tagged Brickton, Frogs, kindie, Kingsize Sound Labs, Montessori, music, Poochamungas, School, theme