Koko the gorilla was able to learn sign language and communicate with humans. Okay, what has that got to do with children's music. Hang on, I'm making a point. Infants, before they are able to speak, can also be taught to communicate with basic sign language. Bear with me. Children are also able to learn the sounds of languages at a very early age. As they get older, we lose this ability.
Dan Schteingart's RED BALLOON seeks to create a stopgap – a collection of songs intended to expose children to many languages and capitalize on their ability to remember sounds, inflections, and pronunciation. As the CD features Cletus the Cow as its main protagonist, RED BALLOON clearly steers for the under-five set.
Featuring a host of ably-talented musicians, RED BALLOON has a unique goal (and hey, it ain't world music) with a narrowcasted audience. To stress their earnestness, the MP3 version is being sold at the low price of $4.95 (at least, that's the current price). But hey you can always grab a physical CD if that format suits your purposes.
RED BALLOON is available through Dan's website, Amazon, and iTunes.
Speaking of new concepts, Mighty Mo Productions, birthed on the banks of the Missouri River, is delivering children's music to the world. The world of kindie music has seen specialty divisions and corporate attempts (hey Disney) to franchise existing popular artists. Led by Jim "Mr. Stinky Feet" Cosgrove, the new label seeks to deliver real music to real families. I will be writing more about the debut release, SMILES AHEAD, in October ahead of its release. Here is a video with samples of the artists, including Caspar Babypants, Brady Rymer, Frances England, and a new song from the Verve Pipe.
Say, while we're talking about new kid's music videos, Amelia Robinson and her ensemble Mil's Trills have released a new video from their recent CD, NOW THAT WE'RE FRIENDS. Take a look and enjoy "All Of the Colors":
Finally, if you want to reach back to the Roaring Twenties (and who doesn't), the Green Orbs are back on the scene with a pair of new songs. "Dear Mr. Mustache" comes complete with a trembly old-fashioned vocal and a period-piece video:
Orbmeisters Heather Hirshfield and her brother Ed Rosenberg go in another direction for "The Hams in the Deep Blue Sea," originally created for the interactive storybook app Mibblio. It's a goofy little tale about silly little pigs. I can just see how that will look in the Google search form. In any case, you can download both songs from the Green Orbs Bandcamp page.