Thursday, June 11, 2015

Big Hamster Dance for Ratboy Jr. and New Kids Vids!

It's all about plate tectonics.

Yeah, there's finally a kid's song ("Poofy") that gets to the bottom of the division of the Earth's land masses. Well, not really. But Ratboy Jr. plays hard and fast with serious stuff. The duo (yes, it only takes two people to make such unique craziness) of Tim Sutton and Matt Senzatimore (aided by ubitqituous uber-producer Dean Jones) are not afraid to ask leading questions such as "What Does the Farm Do?" and "have you ever thought about sponges?"

On the latter song, the chorus answers resoundingly, "Even Billy Ocean uses sponges from the ocean," which led both my kids to ask, "Billy who?"

From their cozy confines in New York State's Hudson Valley, Ratboy Jr. has hatched their third collection of tunes, HAMSTER PANTS. You will be amused ("Marian the Barbarian Librarian"), you will be confused ("The Skunk and the Robot"), and you will be educated ("Ground Food"). And by you, I refer to the reader and any attached children.

If there's a lesson to be learned from Ratboy Jr., it's that fun matters. Children's music doesn't need to always pound home concepts and theories. Sometimes a kid just needs to kick back and enjoy his "Dancing Room." However it's not all fun and games for Tim and Matt. They do finish the CD with "Try," reminding kids that there's more to life but you have to make an effort:

Try to watch for falling stars.
Try to dance in clogs.
Try to sing with the swan as you sit amongst the logs.

You can take the Ratboy Jr. guys from the Hudson Valley (they do a lot of shows around the East Coast) but they remember to bring their sense of humor wherever they go. HAMSTER PANTS is infused with warmth and mirth. You also get a sly reference to Johnny Marr, and name another children's group that works him and Billy Ocean onto the same disk!

HAMSTER PANTS is available from the band's website, Amazon, CDBABY, and iTunes.

Recess Monkey is back and they're full of HOT AIR. That's their new CD/DVD package, featuring a short film about Andrew (singer Drew Holloway) and his magical ballooning adventure. Here's a look at the latest video, "Lighter Than Air":



Brooklyn's impressively silly duo, The Pop-Ups, have released the second in their new kid's webcast series. In this installment, they teach viewers how to play with a ball. Got it?

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