Randy Krbechek's Metronews
March 5, 1997
Music for Children
Let's start with a pair of kid's reviews by my bride, Gail:Previous Article
Various Artists, A Child's Celebration of Song 2 (Music
For Little People 1996) -- This is a collection of a dozen songs by
numerous talented artists expressing varied musical styles will inspire
families to sing and dance together.
Celebration of Song 2 begins with "Iko Iko" by Sebastian the Crab (with vocals by
Sam Wright), a tropical tune that kicks off the festival of music. "Thumbellina" sung by
Danny Kaye is truly joyous, as well as "Inchworm" sung by Victoria Jackson (both of these
great tunes were written by Frank Loesser).
Raffi, an all-time favorite child's singer, performs the up-beat, "Bananaphone." And
"Choo Choo Boogaloo" by Buckwheat Zydeco is guaranteed to liven up your day.
contributes "Flying Lesson," a very special song that is packed with energy
and fun. "Flying Lesson" is an excellent song to interact with your children
by "flap, flap your wings" and "clap, clap your hands" and "stomp, stomp
your feet." (This is our morning exercise song.)
Celebration of Song 2 is rich in rhythms and instrumentations that will perk up your
mood: you'll find your child singing along, too. Add the joy of music to your lives - play A
Child's Celebration of Song 2.
Artists, Big Blues - Blues Music for Kids (Kid
Rhino 1996) -- Leib Ostrow (who produced Child's
Celebration of Song) also assembled Big Blues,
a collection of blues tunes performed by an all-star cast.
Blues lovers, parents and children alike will be drawn to this collection of great classic
and creative new songs that contain a musical rainbow of feelings.
The first track is Michelle Shocked's "Flying Lesson," which really gets the album
off on the right foot. A favorite around our house is "The Rainy Day Blues" by B. B. King.
(I bet you can relate, we had our share this year.)
The album continues with Sonny Terry's great harmony vocals on "Pick a Bale o'
Cotton." 70's star Maria Muldaur contributes two tunes -- "Waggy Tailed Dog" and
"Candy Store Blues." (Where do they come up with these names?)
"Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" by the Fabulous Thunderbirds and "Funky Bluesy ABC's" by
Taj Mahal prove that, although the songs are geared toward little folks, the artists are very
This collection will bring smiles and laughter and inspiration to make the adventure of
growing up a little more rich and a little less painful. Big Blues For Kids is an experience
you and your children shouldn't miss. Share the joy of music with your family, and support
Leib Ostrow's efforts in compiling interesting music for your children.
Parker, Acid Bubblegum (Razor
& Tie 1996) - Seven Graham Parker albums were released (or re-released)
in 1996. But only Acid Bubblegum (his 19th release) contains
Showing that he hasn't lost the edge that propelled him from England as one of the
angry young men with Joe Jackson and Elvis Costello [though Elvis' principal grudge is
directed these days toward women (rather than society)], Parker continues to make edgy,
Parker encourages fans not to buy the re-issues (such as Heat Treatment), and says,
"Consider this: on my last royalty statement from Arista, I owed them $800,000 - so you
won't be doing me a favor by buying these old records!"
Continues Parker, "Better to move into the future than to re-tread the same old tired
ground. Acid Bubblegum has all of the typical Parker elements you'd expect anyway:
extreme hostility ('Turn It In To Hate'), flippancy disguised as extreme hostility ('Bubblegum
Cancer'), and complete impenetrable lyrics ("Impenetrable")."
And Parker's description isn't too far off the mark. Recorded with members of the
Fuggs, Acid Bubblegum has more of an up-tempo feel than such classic works as The
Mona Lisa's Sister (1988). From the bouncy "Bean Counter" to the thought-provoking
"The Got It Wrong (As Usual)," Parker continues to turn out good old, pissed-off rock-n-roll.
And let's give thanks for that.
-- Randy Krbechek
Copyright (c) Randy
David Anand Prasad with Idea Co.