Tag Archives: music

zoo

Minnesota Zoo Counts on the Okee Dokee Brothers

The Minnesota Zoo made a great choice when they partnered with the Okee Dokee Brothers on a song to bring awareness to wildlife conservation. “Countin’ on Me” comes out tomorrow and highlights three of earth’s beautiful creatures: bison, butterflies, and trumpeter swans. The song sends a gentle, yet important message of environmental friendliness and conservation. It tells us repeatedly to “build this home again” and share the responsibility of respecting these animals just as we respect human life. Share this song with your little ones, as they can learn to accept this responsibility at a young age.

Thank you to Sugar Mountain PR for our sneak preview of this beautiful tune and thank you to the Okee Dokee Brothers and the Minnesota Zoo for your important collaboration.

zoo

zoo
Trumpeter swan, North America’s largest waterfowl.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here’s more from Sugar Mountain PR:

“Minneapolis, March 10, 2017 – The Minnesota Zoo and the Okee Dokee Brothers are proud to announce the release of a new single celebrating the Minnesota Zoo’s mission to save wildlife. The Minnesota Zoo commissioned “Countin’ on Me” from the Grammy Award-winning duo to serve as its conservation theme song. The lyrics poetically communicate our shared responsibility to help save wildlife, and reference three species native to Minnesota that the Minnesota Zoo has restored or is working to restore in the wild – bison, butterflies and trumpeter swans.

The commission developed from a collaboration between the Minnesota Zoo and the Okee Dokee Brothers, who share a passion for nature and a mission to encourage kids and families to explore the natural world. These common values are at the heart of their collaboration, which began in July 2015 with the opening of a nature play area and continued with several special appearances at the Minnesota Zoo by bandleaders Justin Lansing and Joe Mailander.

The single, “Countin’ on Me,” will be available for purchase on iTunes beginning March 16. All proceeds from the purchase of the single will support the Minnesota Zoo and its wildlife conservation efforts.

Justin and Joe will debut the single live at the Zoo during a special animal encounter on Saturday, March 18. Their appearance is free with Zoo admission, but due to space limitations, RSVPs are required. Learn more at www.mnzoo.org/okeedokeebrothers.

The Minnesota Zoo is a year-round destination located in Apple Valley, just minutes south of Mall of America. The Zoo’s mission is to connect people, animals and the natural world to save wildlife. For more information, call 952.431.9500 or visit mnzoo.org. The Minnesota Zoo is an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and an institutional member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA). 

As kids in Colorado, Justin and Joe grew up together exploring nearby creeks, trails, woods and rivers. Twenty years later as the Okee Dokee Brothers, they are still roaming the outdoors together, but with a mission and a couple of guitars in their packs. Now based in Minneapolis, the Grammy Award-winning folk singer-songwriters are advocates for adventure.”

The song debuts on March 16. Here are the pre-order links:

Purchase link

http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1212327648?ls=1&app=itunes

Stream Link

http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1212327648

The Minnesota Zoo made a great choice when they partnered with the Okee Dokee Brothers on a song to bring awareness to wildlife conservation.

sweet

Sweet Sounds with Little Miss Ann

Sweet as sweet can be! This collection called Keep On, by Little Miss Ann, is just downright adorable! We feel like we’re sitting right there with Ann and Amy D. in a circle with instruments and snapping fingers, just like in music class! Their voices are friendly, loving, and happy, creating a beautiful experience for children and their families. We especially love Where is Thumbkin? and it’s unique arrangement of verses and bridges. But the one that caught my heart for sure is L.O.V.E., a catchy, harmonious tune that reminds us of all the wonderful ways we can love each other! Certainly an excellent reminder, no matter who you are.

And you know what else? They’re from Chicago so they’ve got to be good people!

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Keep On is available TODAY on Amazon and iTunes. Thank you to Sugar Mountain PR for our complimentary copy in exchange for this review.

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More from Sugar Mountain PR:

“Chicago, February 1 ~ Little Miss Ann has enjoyed national acclaim and a fervent following for her upbeat, down-to-earth and interactive folksy music. Her fifth album of hopeful and happy songs, Keep On, is the result of a collaboration with children’s music newcomer Amy D. Keep On will be available from various music retailers and from littlemissann.com on February 17.

Recorded in the Hudson Valley of New York with Grammy-winning producer Dean Jones, Keep On ranges in musical styles. Grownups will appreciate the 50’s doo-wop sounding song, “L.O.V.E.,” the Andrew Bird-meets-Liz Phair ode to Chicago “The 606,” as well as re-imagined traditional favorites like the Johnny Cash-esque “Where Is Thumbkin?” and a spirited Calypso song that originated in Jamaica called “Hill and Gully Rider.” There’s even a springy-swingy rendition of “Tiptoe Through the Tulips,” blending sweet harmonies, mandolin, and a toy piano. As Jones says, “These two complement each other perfectly. If it sounds like we were having fun it’s because we were. These songs come straight from the heart!”

Guest artists include Latin Grammy winner 123 Andrés and Tim Sutton from Ratboy Jr.

New to the independent family music scene and originally hailing from Nashville, Amy D sings and plays violin, mandolin, melodica, and piano. After meeting at a kids’ music class in Chicago, Ann and Amy discovered that they had many things in common, musically and culturally.  Amy D joined Little Miss Ann’s band in 2015, and the musical connection led to the process of writing and recording the songs of Keep On. Ann and Amy provide a fresh take on the tradition of sing-along, call-and-response style of trailblazers like Chicago-based Ella Jenkins, Raffi, Elizabeth Mitchell, and other enduring artists of the genre. 

Indeed, the songs grew out of both artists’ experiences in working with families: Ann in education (including Chicago’s historic Old Town School of Folk Music) and Amy in social work. Their common Filipino backgrounds inspired two of their original songs: “Ube,” about a cherished Filipino staple, the purple yam, and “The Senses Song,” which mentions halo-halo and lychee, sweet treats from Filipino cuisine. Other songs on the album, like “The 606,” are firmly rooted in Chicago’s vibrant scene.

See the Little Miss Ann Band, featuring Amy D,
in concert on February 26 at the Beat Kitchen in Chicago!

Little Miss Ann will also perform a show with Suzi Shelton at Jalopy in Brooklyn, NY, on March 26.” 

Shake Your Sillies Out with Raffi!

We love to shake our sillies out and sing about apples and bananas in all sorts of crazy ways with Raffi. On Friday the 10th, he came out with his Best of Raffi CD, available on Amazon and iTunes.

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There are so many timeless classics in this collection, arranged to work perfectly for children and the way they sing and move. You will recognize them, but love them even more for Raffi’s special touch. Down by the Bay, Wheels on the Bus, If You’re Happy and You Know It, Mr. Sun, and Day O are all included in this 16-song CD!

Thank you to Sugar Mountain PR and Raffi for our complimentary CD in exchange for our review. As you can see in this video, we LOVE it!

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More from Sugar Mountain PR:

Nashville, TN, December 7, 2016 ~ Rounder Records is thrilled to announce the forthcoming release of Best Of Raffi, a career-spanning collection, celebrating 40 years of hits from the legendary children’s entertainer. Due out February 10, 2017Best Of Raffi will mark the first, curated collection of Raffi’s music to be released outside of his native Canada. Best Of Raffi will include such classics as “Down By The Bay” (1976), “Bananaphone” (1994), and, perhaps his most iconic hit, “Baby Beluga” (1980).

Having released nearly 30 children’s albums, beginning with 1976’s Singable Songs For The Very Young, pioneering troubadour Raffi Cavoukian (better known simply as “Raffi”) is one of the world’s best-selling and most influential children’s entertainers, having brought joy to successive generations of kids—and their parents—with his playful, exuberant personality and his irresistibly infectious songs. Along the way, he has performed countless sold-out shows at concert halls across North America and beyond, and has received a string of Platinum and Gold certifications by the RIAA.

Raffi has also emerged as a respected advocate on behalf of children and the Earth, lending his voice, insight and experience to a number of issues, often through his Centre For Child Honouring. The Centre advocates a children-first approach to healing communities and restoring ecosystems, promoting the idea that early childhood is the gateway to building more humane societies. Child Honouring has found high-profile recognition, connecting Raffi with such luminaries as Nelson Mandela and The Dalai Lama, as well as being the focus of 2012 TEDx Talks by Raffi. The artist has also published several books – including 2013’sLightweb Darkweb, which focuses on the need to reform social media, especially for young users. Over the course of his career, Raffi has received recognition for both his musical achievements and his tireless advocacy work, including the prestigious Order of Canada in 1983, numerous Parents’ Choice awards and Grammy nominations, a Juno Award for Best Children’s Album (Bananaphone,1994) and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.

The liner notes for Best Of Raffi confirm Raffi’s cross-generational appeal:  “There are now millions of ‘Beluga Grads’ — adults who grew up with Raffi’s music and are now experiencing it through their childhood memories and through their own children and grandchildren.”

Raffi‘s albums consistently make the U.S. sales charts, and he continues to perform and record actively: his most recent award-winning title, Owl Singalong, was released earlier in 2016 to critical acclaim, and he is currently in the midst of an extensive North American tour.

With 40 years’ worth of favorites, Best Of Raffi will bridge the gap between parents who grew up with his music, and their children, discovering many of these classics for the first time.

For Raffi‘s upcoming U.S. tour dates, please visit raffinews.com/raffi/concerts/

stood up

They Stood Up, So Should We

“We Stood Up” Makes Me Want To

As America transitions into this new Presidential term and citizens are divided on so many important issues, I sincerely hope that children and their parents are listening to stories and songs like the ones in We Stood Up: Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement. Never have I heard a more comprehensive and poignant sampling of speeches, conversations, testimonies, and poetry from a span of generations affected by the Civil Rights Movement. The moving words of MLK Jr., Maya Angelou, and John Lewis are interspersed with songs that will make you stop and listen. Among the best is the song, Love. Simple, beautiful, and important, especially now. The title song, We Stood Up, represents the story of Rosa Parks and the Greensboro Five with an excellent rap. I can just see students across the country learning the words, choreographing their own dances, and performing this with pride for their parents and communities.

Best of all, this collection is FREE to educators and non-profit organizations!

Get it. Share it.

‘Be the change that you wish to see in the world.’   Mahatma Ghandi

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More from Sugar Mountain PR:

“Freedom, Opportunity, Equality: Civil Rights Leaders and Musicians Share Stories and Songs on New Album
We Stood Up: Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement

featuring John Lewis

On MLK Day, we wanted to remind you about an important anthology album for kids about the civil rights movement – We Stood Up: Reflections on the Civil Rights Movement. The producer of the album and sample tracks will air on WXPN Radio’s “Kids Corner” show, streaming live on xpn.org beginning at 7 pm ET.

We Stood Up offers a wealth of recordings to inspire children. Interviews with civil rights icons and standard-bearers – John Lewis, Shirley Franklin, Andrew Young, and the late Julian Bond, among several others with compelling stories to share with their young interviewers – talk about their experiences struggling for freedom and equality.
The album also features poems, including Maya Angelou‘s “Caged Bird” and Sonia Sanchez reading “Catch the Fire.” The title track and other original songs are performed by various artists (David Tobocman, Tim Kubart, Renee Stahl Dektor, Rhythm Child, Mista Cookie Jar, The Hollow Trees, and more).
 
Educators and nonprofit organizations may download the album, with related curricula, for free from this special Songs and Stories pageWe Stood Up is the latest of Lincoln Financial Foundation’s ongoing “Celebrate Lincoln’s Legacy” educational outreach programs.”
Junie B Jones

Junie B. Jones The Musical Takes Me Back

Junie B. Jones The Musical takes me back to my musical production days and I love the memories! Working with young singers, dancers, and actors to produce amazing shows like this is so fun and rewarding! I can so easily imagine the kids on stage as I listen to this CD. The CD, sheet music, and show package all come out TODAY!

Junie B. Jones

Heisler and Goldrich portray the life and times of Junie so well with songs like You Need Glasses, Kickball Tournament, Show and Tell, and Writing Down the Story of My Life. My daughter temporarily needed glasses at the age of three for a minor discrepancy. I was so worried she would totally reject the idea, but I was wrong to worry. She chose a pair of striped purple glasses and was showered with compliments everywhere she went! She was proud to wear those glasses and they did the trick in such a short time.

Thank you to Waldmania PR for our complimentary CD in exchange for this review. Go to Goldrich and Heisler’s website to find out more.

You can download it, stream it, buy the sheet music, or do the show!

Here’s more from Music Theatre International:

Created by Marcy Heisler and Zina Goldrich, the team that brought you Dear Edwina, comes Junie B. Jones, The Musical – a delightful adaptation of four of Barbara Park’s best-selling books, brought to life in a genuinely comical (and not strictly-for-kids) musical developed by TheatreworksUSA. Awaken a young person’s desire to read with the sassy little diva, Junie B. Jones, and her adventures in first grade.

It’s Junie B.’s first day of first grade, and a lot of things have changed for her: Junie’s friend, Lucille, doesn’t want to be her best pal anymore and, on the bus, Junie B. makes friends with Herb, the new kid at school. Also, Junie has trouble reading the blackboard and her teacher, Mr. Scary, thinks she may need glasses. Throw in a friendly cafeteria lady, a kickball tournament and a “Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal,” and first grade has never been more exciting.

Featuring a tremendously loveable character and fun-filled songs, Junie B. Jones will capture your audience members’ hearts just as the books captivated an entire generation of students. The small cast, minimal design needs and performance accompaniment CD make this an ideal show for theatres looking to tour schools or with strong education programs.

For more about the Junie B. Jones books, visit www.juniebjones.com or a bookstore near you!