We started our summer music series in earnest this week. The boys and I trekked into Manhattan for not one, but TWO children's music shows in TWO separate public parks. I'll talk about the morning show first – Father Goose in Madison Square Park.
MSQ has kind of a quirky setup – kids performances are sequestered to a side lawn near the playground. Meanwhile, you can look over the fountain to the main lawn, where there's a huge platform stage for adult music performances happening in the evening.
But their free summer concert series has been a boon. We took in Recess Monkey last summer, and this year's end-of-school, camp-hasn't-started concert turned out to be the Gooseman and Company. Luckily the weather was not as hot or humid (yet) and it was a breeze to walk with two kids in tow. Ben's knapsack contained a blanket to sit on. I carried waters and snacks (and a camcorder). Matthew, now too big for a stroller, handled the walk with aplomb.
Father Goose is coming back from some major medical issues and noted that this was his first full performance. The band did play two numbers on their own, which gave him a slight breather. The cast of characters also included "Little Goose," who contributed vocals for most of the set. Goose went through his catalog and kept the crowd entertained, stopping songs a couple of times to fill in background for the adults.
For some reason, I thought it would be fun to document more than 1-2 songs. I did not realize I would wind up shooting five of the numbers in the one-hour set. But it will give the kids more than a snapshot of their day to remember. Goose lets the band do most of the heavy lifting but his vocals and command of the crowd kept things lively. Ironically, one of the most spontaneous moments – a little girl dancing crazily as he stepped from the small stage – was not captured in my videos.
Goose is not touring a new album, rather getting back on the road and showing people that he still has it. And he still has it. I would suggest following him on social media for future appearances, as his web site stops at today's show. The kids grooved, the kids moved, and then we got the show on the road. There was some sadness on my part to today's travels but the kids buoyed my spirits. But that's something I'm writing about elsewhere in a more appropriate forum.
Stay tuned for part two – Joanie Leeds in Union Square Park.