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
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!
This weekend has been pretty busy. First on Saturday members of the Poochamungas worked on a Top Secret project for the upcoming Big Leap fundraiser for my children’s school. More details to arrive later in the week. Then my son and I went to The Old Town School of Folk Music for a concert with The Okee Dokee Brothers. There were also birthday parties, holiday parties, carnivals, and what not! Busy but fun.
If you are looking for a great place to start in the kindie music world Brickton Montessori (our school) is having their yearly fundraiser and among the items up for bid online are a Kindie Music CD Collection. This is a tremendous oppurtunity to get a lot of great music and help a good cause at the same time! All CD’s were donated by the artists reflecting the many great music styles available. From punk to pop and jazz almost every genre is covered. Included are Dog on Fleas, Joanie Leeds, Mr. G, Jim Cosgrove, Lunch Money, The Hipwaders, Alistair Moock (Grammy nominee), Grenadilla, Mister Singer, Little Miss Ann, Story Laurie, Lori Henriques, Recess Monkey, Mr. Kurt, Baze and His Silly Friends, The Boogers, Heidi Swedberg and Her Sukey Jump Band, and Bricktons very own Poochamungas! Just added an autographed CD from our friends the Okee Dokee Brothers!!! Bidding starts at $60 but I’m sure the price is going to go up. Get to bidding on this fantastic-super-amaz-a-riffic deal today! While your there see if anything else catches your eye. Only 4 days left!
Posted in family, gigs, live music
Tagged Alistair Moock (Grammy nominee), Baze and His Silly Friends, Brickton, Dog on Fleas, Grenadilla, Heidi Swedberg and Her Sukey Jump Band, Jim Cosgrove, Joanie Leeds, Justin Roberts, Little Miss Ann, Lori Henriques, Lunch Money, Mister Singer, Montessori, Mr G, Mr. Kurt, Okee Dokee Brothers, Poochamungas, Recess Monkey, secret, Story Laurie, The Boogers, the hipwaders, top
The Ramble holds a special place in our hearts here at A Man, A Band and A Plan… Sort of. This was the song that my daughter choose for her first ice skating solo last summer. It had already been one of our favorites and The Golden State album is one of my recommended choices for people entering the world of Kindie music. I met head songwriter/ Hipwader Tito Uquillas at my very first kindiefest (definitely a theme around here). He is a full time paramedic (still working 24hr shifts for a private ambulance is a rare thing these days) and I am a full time firefighter so we had a few things to talk about. It’s always fun to exchange stories with people in the EMS industry. We also share a music making philosophy – Get in a band with musicians better than you as we both consider ourselves songwriters first. Well we didn’t exchange CD’s at that time (my usual way of obtaining music), it was at another kindiefest 2 years later and Hey Josie (also on The Golden State) was a big hit on Kids Place Live at the time. It seems after that first kindiefest, on his last day, he went and spent a day in Central Park roaming. Having already visited many NY destinations (Greenwich Village, Wehawken, etc) connecting all the things he had seen on TV and movies while growing up. He then set off on an adventure of a different sort. The goal that day was to walk through Central Park and head to the Museum of Modern Art. Being a California guy this open space in NYC came a bit unexpected. He came upon a cool foot path that took him through the trees and rocks, winding through arches and over bridges, through bushes around ponds… Then he found out the name of the path was “The Ramble”. He had an idea and quickly sang into his phone. The original version he says was more of a hop scotch rhythm to it. More of a chanting version sans bass, drums and guitar. So he takes this back to California and has a version of this song in mind. He also has some other songs and the band goes and road tests them- meaning they’re rehearsing them and putting them in their live shows. The Ramble has started to morph. He looks up birds of Central Park and finds a warbler which works. After a year of practicing all the new stuff they head into the studio. By now the Ramble is completely different. The chanting rhythm has been exchanged for a drum rhythm and the full band version is rocking. They now have a tom-tom dominant drum line (Tito wanted more tom like Christopher Walken wanted more cowbell) and the guitar riffs and bass line are set. They now need a studio to record in as they are ready. Through a series of events they end up at Studio Trilogy and record with Willie Samuels. Willie has a great story as to how that ever important drum sound in The Ramble came to be…”I do something when recording drums where I have my “standard” microphone set up, but I will usually throw up one or two “oddball” microphones in random locations around the drum kit just to see if any “magic” comes from them (usually not, but its a fun experiment). On those sessions, I put up an old RCA 77 ribbon microphone about 5 feet out in front of the drum set. It was a weird, and funky sound that didn’t seem to contribute much to the drum sound. BUT while mixing The Ramble, I was having difficulty finding a drum sound that fit the vibe of the track. I pushed up the fader with that RCA microphone on it and everything just came to life. It gave the drums this great old Bo Diddly quality that really fit what Nick (Hipwaders drummer) was playing with all the floor Tom work. I took it a little further and pulled back all the other mics and the drum sound on that tune ultimately ended up being almost completely just that one microphone”… Basically he’s saying most of the drum sounds came through the one mic. Which is not how you usually record drums. So very cool. Which is why you hire a good engineer. Which is a story for another day. Moving on… Tito is an inspirational type of songwriter. He can go six months without writing anything and then write six songs in two weeks. He usually writes the chorus and melody and then fills in the rest. Occasionally he’ll find a guitar riff and work from there. Go have a listen to The Ramble and the rest of The Hipwaders catalog as it’s some pretty tasty stuff. They’re headed back into the studio this year for a yet to be named new CD. I’ll be looking for it and you should as well. Go support a kindie artist today!
Posted in family, Kindie, Recording, song reviews
Tagged California, Central Park, Children's, Kids Place Live, kindie, music, NYC, the hipwaders, the ramble
This is where I list songs that are appropriate for all ages. My response to those who claim “kids” music is simplistic and limited. “Good Music Knows No Age” is how we respond and here are three more songs that could be played alone or mixed with others with no one the wiser they came off of a Kindie CD.
Grenadilla – I Shall Sing. With the funky bass beats, perfect harmonies, pian0, guitar and even a tin whistle this song just exudes joy. It has a tropical rhythm. Appropriate for any set list.
The Hipwaders – Hey Josie. It’s a perfect piece of California Pop Music. Strong Vocals and harmonies, power chords and that California sound though and through. One of the best crafted tunes you’ll ever hear!
Josh and the Jamtones – Jump Up. The title song off of there debut CD is ska infested dance party madness! It has to be 3 minutes of the most energetic music I have ever heard and it would play anywhere at anytime.
That’s three more songs to add to our ageless kindie music list for now. Please add suggestions you may have for consideration.
The process of songwriting fascinates me and nothing beats listening to a really well crafted song. Mr. Kurt (Gallagher) is a singer/songwriter from New York who actually plays to kid/family audiences year round and makes a living at it. Over 20 years! That in itself is really impressive as those who make a living as strictly kindie musicians are few and far between. The fact he supports his family doing it is even more impressive. He has 6 CD’s finished and performs in a different place every day. Schools, libraries, camps, etc… A very working musician. I met Kurt at kindiefest a few years ago and we bonded over a few beers and have remained friends ever since. He also wrote one of my favorite songs. I featured it in Songs I Wish I had Written earlier this year. Click the link to give it a read. The song is titled Peace and Quiet on his 1,2,3,4 CD and what a great song it is. Kurt says that it was actually left over from his previous recording effort. All he had at that time was the first two lyrics and a whole bunch of other songs he needed to complete. Seems the previous album called Let’s Go was based on the idea of an older brother narrating about his “crazed” little sister. You know the sibling who’s always in perpetual motion and never stops moving. Biking, running, talking, playing with dolls, digging up gardens and always pestering her older brother. She’s THAT sister. Along with the sister he’s got a couple hyper pets as well demanding his attention. That’s one harried big brother! Kurt took those lyrics and proceeded to finishes them. Then he added the music which is how he tends to write. He writes lyrics and or he writes music. Each one as a separate idea. Then he tries to match the lyrics he’s written with the different music he’s recorded which is pretty cool. So he writes the guitar part as a Chuck Berry slow Memphis Shuffle thing and uses the pre-chorus chord progression similar to Heatwave from Martha and the Vandellas (the mans a walking music reference guide) for his chorus music. Armed with those ideas he heads into the studio to record having sent the rough recordings to fellow band members to practice and bring new ideas. Well his accountant/guitarist (can’t make this stuff up) comes up with another guitar part to drive the song which is what you hear on the recording with the Memphis riff in the background. Kurt calls it a Grateful Dead groove thing. Now the tuba bass line… Yes the TUBA bass line (Dragging the Line, Tommy James) is brought in by the tuba player who had an idea and it so works. Until Kurt told me this I thought it was some kind of bass compression pedal. This all happens organically as the band grew with the song. Then I had to ask about the counting and Kurt informed me that in his live shows he incorporates showing rhythm by using different counts in different languages. It totally works here. Peace and Quiet is a great song that deserves to be heard by many. Kurt is also working on putting out a new CD and looks to start recording a new batch of songs in the spring.He’s going to self-produce focusing on good writing and good guitar which is what the song Peace and Quiet has in abundance! Go have a listen and buy some of Mr Kurt’s work today. You can check out the words to the song below. Next week The Hipwaders!
My Little baby sister is out of control
She’s got a tiny little body and a big gigantic soul
She’s driving me crazy every night and every day
All she ever wants to do is run and jump and play
I never thought I’d want to try it
But I could really use some peace and quiet
1 and 2 and three and four and
1 and 2 and three and four and
My crazy kitty cat is drivin’ me up the wall
Trouble in the winter, spring, summer & fall
Jumping on the kitchen table and the counter top
only knows how to go, Doesn’t know how to stop
My little puppy dog is totally insane
Nothing but marbles rolling round my doggies’ brain
Runs around in circles when he wants to go outside
When he starts barking the house rocks from side to side
Posted in family, Kindie, Recording, song reviews
Tagged Children's, chuck berry, Gallagher, kindie, kinsiefest, Kurt, martha and the vandellas, Memphis shuffle, music, New York, Peace and Quiet, the hipwaders, Tuba bass line
Christmas is less than a week away and some folks will still be looking for gifts. I highly recommend the gift of music for your kids from the kindie world. While I am always biased for the Poochamungas if your reading this your probably already a fan. Fortunately there is a lot of great kindie rock music for kids these days. Here is a link to my top ten for this year. Also recent post about Istvan and his Imaginary Band, Human Tim/Robot Tim, Songs I wish I had written and the many other artists talked about on here during the year. If you have just started reading here awhile back I posted about some CD’s to get you started on a path of excellent kindie music. Here they are with some updates
Grenadilla – Grenadilla This is a fantastic vocal journey that amazes me to this day. The whole album is full of happiness and joy. This is the hidden gem of the bunch. One of the best CD’s I have ever heard. The are re-releasing it with new CD art!
The Boogers- Let’s Go. If Punk Rock is your thing you and your kids will be rocking for hours with this one. The best at what they do…. This year they released Extractum Victoris which has my all time favorite Booger song’s Pandas are Dangerous.
Justin Roberts – Pop Fly. There’s a reason why he was Grammy nominated for Recess this year. Still Pop Fly is our fav and filled with great, tight pop songs.
The Verve Pipe – A Family Album. This is the best kindie CD ever made. Just great songs and a great band. Great stuff! Haven’t had a chance to listen to their newest CD but the few songs I have off of Are We There Yet? have been excellent,
Okee Dokee Brothers – Take it Outside. Who knew bluegrass made for such great family music? The Okee Dokee Brothers did and this CD is pure energy!… They followed this up with the Grammy winning Can You Canoe? One of the best kids CD’s ever
The Hipwaders – The Golden State. Nothing new this year but this is one the best CD’s ever released with a great California pop sound and lyrically sharp. It’s for the whole family.
So that concludes a few of the CD’s I think great music gifts for the holidays. Go support your local kindie artist and buy some today!
Posted in CD reviews, family, Kindie, song reviews
Tagged Children's, Christmas, Grammy, Grenadilla, Istvan and his Imaginary Band, Justin Roberts, kindie, music, Okee Dokee Brothers, Poochamungas, The Boogers, the hipwaders, The Verve Pipe