Archive for December, 2010

Beth’s Corner # 7

Sugar Mountain PR

Sugar Mountain PR

By: Beth Blenz-Clucas

Best of 2010 Lists, Holiday Music and 2011 Forecast

The Grammy voters have spoken, and we’re happy to announce that Justin Roberts has won a nomination in the Best Musical Album for Children category, alongside Pete Seeger, They Might Be Giants, the Battersby Duo and Judy Pancoast. Bill Harley also received a well-deserved nomination in the Best Spoken Word Album for Children category. Congratulations to all of the nominees and all of those who have released CDs during this incredible year for family music.

Several “Best of the Year” lists are posting, with more coming soon. There is no lack of helpful sites for locating great music for kids:
Fids and Kamily poll – The critics involved in this poll, modeled on Pazz and Jop, grows every year. This year’s top 10 list includes the heavyweights of indie kids’ music.
Coolmompicks – These moms are indeed cool, particularly the smart and sassy reviewer Christina Refford. The list is worth checking twice.
National Children’s Entertainment – Paula Slade brings a sensitive and smart ear to her picks.
Parents Magazine – This venerable parenting publication teamed up with Commonsensemedia.org to pick their top 10 musical picks.
Parentsconnect – This Nickelodeon site is staffed by some very smart mamas, and they’ve selected a lot of different CDs for their Best of the Year picks.
Time Out NY Kids – super smart dad music aficionado Jeff Bogle picks the best of the year for this fantastic NYC parenting magazine.
Zooglobble – Frequent NPR contributor Stefan Shepherd has been weighing in all year about his picks, and he is choosing his favorites in a few different categories.
Kidzmusic.com – Highly respected reviewer, and former children’s artist performer, John Wood, brings a very unique perspective to his reviews of some of the best children’s music. CDs and downloads can also be purchased at the site.

Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer will be the stars of a Christmas Sing-Along special on Sirius-XM Satellite Radio’s Kids Place Live over the holidays. Beloved DJ/acclaimed musician Robbie Schaefer sings and plays along with the Grammy Award winning duo. Also joining in the holiday hootenanny will be Scottish fiddler Bonnie Rideout and Frank Solivan, plus an amazing 7 year old banjo player named Jesse. The special airs on Kids Place Live (channel 116) several times: Friday, 12/24 6pm PST/9pm EST; Saturday, 12/25 9am EST & 5pm EST; Sunday, 12/26 12pm EST/9am EST

Key Wilde and Mr Clarke have cooked up a couple of new songs for the holidays, to post as a digital download on the Little Monster Records homepage soon. Their rockingly harmonic “Christmas Cheer” and “Silent Night” songs on Sirius-XM Kids Place Live later this month, too.

Meanwhile, the Sugar Free Allstars are making the holidays groovy again with their FREE song download, “Funky Christmas.” Get it here and get your party started.

For more sing-along fun this week and next, check your PBS TV schedules for the Peter Yarrow Sing Along Special, which includes performances by kindie artist Billy Jonas, Keb Mo and Mary Chapin Carpenter.

COMING NEXT YEAR
Smithsonian Folkways legend Ella Jenkins will release a collection of songs from her African-American heritage on February 22nd: Ella Jenkins: A Life in Song.

Tens of thousands of fans have viewed Debbie and Friends’ animated videos based on Debbie’s engaging Story Songs. A new DVD featuring some of the fan favs mixed with live concert scenes will be released in March, and you may preview some of the videos now on the Debbie and Friends Youtube channel.

We were excited to hear the beautifully produced R&B introduction to the instruments from Groove Kid Nation. The Wheels on the Bus, the first CD from this L.A. based indie label, run by musician Rodney Lee, arrives in March.

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