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Alex & The Kaleidoscope Band’s CD, I’m So Glad {Music Review}

imglad

With 16 national awards in their hip pocket, Philadelphia-based  Alex & The Kaleidoscope Band step front and center on the kids’ music stage with their 2012 CD, I’m So Glad.

The band’s fourth release, I’m So Glad has already won a 2012 Parents’ Choice Approved Award and a Tillywig Toy “Best Family Fun” Award.  The song “Kangaroo!” was an Independent Music Awards “Best Song for Children” winner.

I’m So Glad showcases the work of longtime songwriting partners AlexMitnick (music) and Alan Bell (lyrics), who glide with ease from rock to folk/pop, from reggae to world music.  Mitnick and Bell are known for songs that engage children physically — with strong rhythms and catchy melodies — and mentally — through witty, insightful, empowering lyrics about self-awareness, nature, and the importance of understanding one’s role as a part of a community.

Distinguished by the contrast it achieves from track to track, I’m So Glad constantly renews the engagement of the listeners.  The title track, a rhythmic celebration of life, incorporates the Nigerian folk song “Fum Wah Alafia Ashe Ashe” (“Give me peace, let it be so …”).  The head bobbing, call-and-response reggae sing-along, “The Tongue Song,” and the hip-shaking Zydeco grooves of “Crocodile” get kids up and moving.  Taking a moment to breathe, the soothing “Water Lily” includes the Buddhist mantra Om Mane Padme Hum.

Young paleontologists go on dinosaur adventures with the Middle Eastern flavored “Dino Dig” and the bluesy “Tyrannosaurus.”  Alex & TheKaleidoscope Band offer a celebration of their art with “Music,” layering high-energy rock ‘n’ roll over a salsa-influenced beat, sweetened with shades of gospel from the dynamic dancing/singing duo of Najwa Parkins and Samantha Rise.

A graduate of the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Alex Mitnick is dedicated to both teaching and performing.  In addition to touring the nation with Alex & The Kaleidoscope Band, Alex has, since 2000, directed the music program for children eighteen months through eighth grade at the Princeton Montessori School.  In addition, he is a faculty member at both the University of the Arts and The Princeton Center for Teacher Education, where he conducts workshops for teachers and counselors.

My children ages 4 and 2 years old enjoyed the upbeat songs found on the album. And I for one liked the fun and engaging lyrics that teach of self awareness, about the world around us, and more! I also like the fact this album it has been one that both my son and daughter like to hear together! My son really likes the Crocodile song and counting off 1,2,3, 4 and my daughter likes the Water Lily Song!

Want it? I’m So Glad is available on Amazon for $12.40 for the 10 track album as of this posting.

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in exchange for my opinion of them. This review is 100% my opinion and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was not compensated in any other way for this product review.

 

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Album Review: Christmas with Mrs. Claus by Judy Pancoast

Everywhere you look it is holiday time!

Adding to this year’s celebration of the season, Grammy Nominee Judy Pancoast has released her new CD, Christmas with Mrs. Claus.

The songs include a mix of traditional favorites and original songs from Judy with Mrs. Claus popping up throughout as she keeps the North Pole humming along and reads from Santa’s Book of Good Girls and Boys.  Judy does a fabulous job of capturing the magic and wonder of Christmas; the album is certain to ignite that starry-eyed spark that kids get when thinking of a visit from Santa.  This collection is sure to become a family favorite Christmas CD.

The CD includes a remix of Judy’s YouTube hit “The House on Christmas Street”.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J7uRl07K4H8&feature=share

Which brings us to The House on Christmas Street International Tour 2012.  This unique concert tour for charity has Judy traveling the country performing at houses with animated Christmas displays.  The hosts in each city have gone all out with their Christmas decorations and Judy performs right in the midst of it all.  The best part is it’s all for charity.  Each house hosting a concert involves a charity to benefit from the event.

Here are the cities Judy will visit this year: (http://judypancoast.com/2012_tour.htm

December 10: Grand Bay, AL * December 11: Orlando, FL * December 12: Celebration FL * December 13: Mauldin, SC * December 14: Pilot Mt., NC * December 15: Ennice, NC * December 16: Anderson, IN * December 17: Lincoln, NE * December 18: Fairmont, MN * December 19: Hudson, IL * December 20: Livonia, MI * December 21: Toronto, ON (Canada) * December 22: Manheim, PA * December 23: Nazareth, PA

Our Thoughts on the Album…

My family and I found Christmas with Mrs. Claus by Judy Pancoast a fun album to add into our mix of favorites to listen to during the Holiday season. This album is full of cheerful songs both original and traditional with a dash of story telling in between. This album sounds great and will totally get listeners into the mood of Christmas. Judy does a wonderful job delivering an album that’s sure to lift the spirits of those both young and old.

I would recommend checking out the album for yourself and if you can, try to visit one of the stops of her Christmas tour if she’ll be preforming anywhere near you!

 Social Media: Facebook,  www.judypancoast.com  and watch theYoutube video of  Christmas with Mrs. Claus – Judy Pancoast:

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in exchange for my opinion of them. This review is 100% my opinion and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was not compensated in any other way for this product review.

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Kylie Minogue: The Abbey Road Sessions Album Review

 

This month, Kylie Minogue released the album “The Abbey Road Sessions”. This album has been a delight to listen to and even though it’s not my normal music choice, I ended up really liking it! On Abbey Road Sessions, there are sixteen tracks all radically reworked, spanning Kylie’s incredibly twenty-five-year career! The album was recorded in London’s legendary Abbey Road Studios with Kylie’s band and a full orchestra.

This album features known hits such as “I Should Be So Lucky”, “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” and “The Locomotion”. Other highlights include fan favorite but previously unreleased “Flower” (“Flower” Music Video), a song she wrote years ago following her battle with breast cancer, an ode to the child she hopes to have one day.

It’s been hard for me to pick just one favorite song off this album. Though I will mention that it has been really cute that when the song “The Locomotion” starts playing both my kids (especially my son) get up and start singing and dancing along!I imagine that Kylie’s album will be getting a lot more play from me. I for one really enjoy the fact that in a time of the year when things often get a little hectic I can pop in an album like this one and enjoy mellow & relaxing tunes that are great mood enhancers. Kyle’s voice is just so wow to listen too and the full orchestra just makes the album that much more enjoyable!
I would encourage you to check out The Abbey Road Sessions for yourself! This album would make a wonderful gift this Holiday season whether for yourself or someone you know that may be a fan of this type of music.

Upcoming TV Appearances: Kylie will appear on Dancing With The Stars on November 13th and the Tonight Show With Jay Leno on November 14th to perform “The Locomotion”.

Get ConnectedKylie on Twitter | Kylie on Facebook

Links To Buy Album: iTunes | Amazon (Deluxe) | Amazon (Standard)

*I participated in this campaign for One2One Network & I received a free copy of the CD for review purposes. All opinions are entirely my own.  *

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Review & Giveaway: Josh Wilson, “Noel” Album

 

Josh Wilson is a new to me artist and I only discovered him after receiving his Christmas album to review on my blog a couple of weeks ago. Needless to say, I’ll most definitely be checking out his other albums as his album his very first full length Christmas album “Noel”, has really impressed me!

On this album there are 10 songs and length runs about 35 minutes long. This to date is one of the most unique Christian Christmas albums I’ve owned. The instruments played (which are many) are done so in such a way that they are spotlighted and really bring such a sound to each of the song unlike any other I’ve heard. And speaking of spotlighting, a neat thing is that each of the instruments pictured on the album cover are featured from an accordion to a banjo. It’s been a total delight to my ears!

My favorite tracks on the album are hard to pick because they are all so great in their own ways! But if I had to pick I’d have to say I really enjoyed the instrumental tracks which are Noel & Carol of the Bells! I could easily play those two songs on repeat all day long! Oh, and the song “Once a Year” which features Andrew Peterson is really great. It’s words talk about how good it is to do for others for more than just once time around the year as Christ called us to.

Overall, I highly recommend this album! It’s a joyful up beat album that celebrates a season of joy and happiness that should be experienced year round. This album can transform, remind, and encourage listeners to remember the true meaning and reason of the season that should be played out all year long.

Buy it: If interested in purchasing Josh Wilson’s Noel for yourself, a friend, or a loved one, you can do so as it’s currently $6.99 for an MP3 album or you can get it for less than 8.30 for a physical copy on Amazon.com.

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Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in exchange for my opinion of them. This review is 100% my opinion and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was not compensated in any other way for this product review.

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Kids Music Review: Preschool of Rock

 Laying down a beat, from Doo-Wop to Blue Man Group …

Building on the momentum of their 2012 Parents’ Choice winning album, Dance Party, Preschool of Rock charts new kids’ music territory — defining life as rhythm — with the December 4 release of their third studio CD, Everything Makes a Sound!

Everything Makes a Sound features singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Michael Napolitano who, as a second-generation drummer, lives and breathes rhythm. Michael, founder of the popular New Jersey-based Preschool of Rock music classes, is well aware that rhythm, an intrinsic aspect of childhood from patty cake to jumping rope, provides the motor for individual development and a framework for social connections with other kids. On Everything Makes a Sound, he’s included tribal rhythms (“Safari Song”), indie melodic hooks (“Shake It”), and even punk beats (“Cupcake Song”). Michael also wanted to pay tribute to his parents and the importance of family.

My children have been enjoying “Everything Makes a Sound” quite a bit. Though I must say that this album has had a bigger impact on my nearly two year old son over my four and a half year old daughter. He’s literally has been asking for it to be played daily since I introduced them to it. Since his favorite song on the album is “Shake it”, he asks for the album by that name instead of it’s actual title.

There are ten tracks on this album and total runtime is a little over thirty minutes. The specific time has been perfect for a half hour of dance time each day as well as our short trips from and to destinations in the car. Playing music that the kids love during trips whether short or long always boost the spirits of my kids and that makes for a much better trip for everyone in the family.

A few of Owen’s (my nearly two year old) favorite tracks are Shake it, the Safari Song, and the Cupcake Song. I personally love the song Everything Makes a Sound because it’s so unique as everything the song is composed of can be found around the house. I believe the artist of this album is doing a great job in making children learn and appreciate rhythms of all kinds! It’s gotten both my kids moving and singing along to the tracks and for me, that’s a win!

If you are interested in learning more about the album, be sure to check out the Preschool of Rock website at: http://preschoolofrock.com

Buy it: Preschool of Rock “Everything Makes a Sound”, can be purchased for $14.99 on at CDbaby.com and iTunes. This album best suited for children ages birth to age 6 six, in my opinion.

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in exchange for my opinion of them. This review is 100% my opinion and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was not compensated in any other way for this product review.

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Review & Giveaway: Hillsong “We have a Savior” Christmas Album

 

It’s now November and that means that the Holiday season as officially begun in my home. And when that happens, I feel the need to bust out my very favorite Christmas CD for my family and I enjoy to enjoy listening too till after Christmas Day! And I’ll have to say that this year I’ve been thrilled to add so many new favorite must listen to albums to our circle. One of these new albums has been the very first Christmas album in seven years titled “We have a Saviour” by one of our already favorite artists Hillsong.

This album has 12 songs total and it’s roughly and hour worth of playtime! I love that’s a great mix of inspiring and festive songs but not only those that we know, but the song “Born is the King” which is an original and was also last year’s popular radio song! With all the covers of Jingle Bell Rock, Let it Snow, and Santa Baby out there, it is great that we can pop in a cd like this one to be reminded that Jesus is the Reason for the Season. And what better an album to listen to than one by the Hillsong!

Overall we are very happy with this album. It’s moving, inspirational, and reminder to remember the real meaning behind Christmas which is to celebrate the birth of a Saviour who came in love offering himself as the ultimate gift.

Buy it: If interested in purchasing Hillsong: We Have a Savior for yourself, a friend, or a loved one, you can do so as it’s currently $7.99 for an MP3 album or you can get it for less than 8.76 for a physical copy on Amazon.com.

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned products in exchange for my opinion of them. This review is 100% my opinion and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was not compensated in any other way for this product review.

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