Archive for the ‘Book Review by EPG’ Category
Fun songs, great arrangements and fantastic vocals combine to create a get-up-on-your-feet-to-dance-and-play Singable Picture Book delight!
Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’ (the Air Band Song and Other Toe-Tapping Tunes)
Words and Tunes by Lisa Loeb, Various Artists, and Traditional
Songs Performed by Lisa Loeb
Illustrated by Ryan O’Rourke
Published by Sterling Publishing
Songs include, listed in book order:
- TURN IT DOWN! The Air Band Song (new, original song)
- FATHER ABRAHAM
- MISS MARY MACK
- MONSTER STOMP (new, original song)
- GOING AWAY (new, original song)
- DO YOUR EARS HANG LOW
- EVERYBODY WAKE UP (new, original song)
- HELLO, TODAY (new, original song)
- PEANUT BUTTER AND JELLY
- HEAD, SHOULDERS, & TOES
Thoughts from Emily (and Eloise, too)
This book is great fun and so well produced.
I love the illustrations by Ryan O’Rourke, including the jewel-toned rainbow color palate and whimsical typography.
Lisa Loeb’s vocals are fantastic. She never over-sings or yells and delivers effortless sounding, intimate performances in the upbeat and slower numbers. Lisa Loeb sings the songs and tells the stories with a sense of fun, but with honesty and authenticity. She never sings down to the children. And, she can be funny, too, like in “Father Abraham” when introducing new movements, letting a little “Oh, Brother!” creep into her voice. Instrument choices are wonderful throughout. I particularly loved the funny sounds chosen for the “blank” spots in “Head, Shoulders, Knees & Toes.” I found myself laughing right out loud.
It’s also sweet to add in a breather with the yoga in the sweet, sunny song “Hello, Today,” which is a nice break to remind everyone to slow down a little and take a deep breath and enjoy the day.
This book would make a fun basis for a kid’s party. Use the pictures as cues for decorations, invite kids over, gather ‘em ’round and go through the book. Everyone will have fun for sure!
A few fleeting thoughts about the songs:
TURN IT DOWN! The Air Band Song
My daughter Eloise had a fun time demonstrating for me the crazy (and physically challenging) things you find yourself doing as the END of this song!
I remember playing this clapping game, which a friend of mine taught me, on my elementary school playground in Indianapolis, IN. It was fun to discover that my daughter Eloise learned this clapping game, which a friend of hers taught her, on her elementary school playground in Arlington, VA. It’s like a playground meme that crosses barriers of time and space.
If you were going to have a party with this book, you could pair MONSTER STOMP with Monster Mash
I particularly loved the blue-grassy feel of this song. It reminded me of Woody Guthrie’s song Riding in My Car
DO YOUR EARS HANG LOW
I never knew this song had movements and just love that Lisa added them in the book!
EVERYBODY WAKE UP
This song made me think of Steve Martin’s Late for School
I just loved the breather this song allowed and a reminder that exercise can also be relaxing. I found myself thinking about John Denver’s Sunshine on My Shoulders and The Beatles’ (George Harrison’s) “Here Comes the Sun” (if only someone would illustrate THAT for a picture book!). I also really love Dan Zane’s song HELLO HELLO (also a sweet Singable Picture Book, illustrated by Donald Saaf)
Another fun song to remember from being a kid at camp. Lisa Loeb uses a slightly different rhythm than the one I remember. But I still love Peanut Butter and Jelly!
HEAD, SHOULDERS, & TOES
I used to have “oh not that again” kind of mom dread hearing a song like this in an anthology of songs for kids. Some songs in the public domain, and taken up by acts like Barney (I’m sorry, but it’s true), give me shivers of unhappiness…especially when there are so many wonderful songs out there! These “public domain” songs are low hanging fruit, they are free to produce and often bore me to pieces.
BUT IN THE CREATIVE HANDS OF LISA LOEB, this song has become a funny circus of sounds and a fun way to get a little exercise and have some fun to boot! Wait until you hear the sounds she and her creative team came up with for when the body parts stop dropping out. I went from “oh darn” to OH WOW! I hope she makes a video for this one so kids can see them making some of these zippy sounds.
My daughter Eloise says that the chorus of this song was her favorite part of the whole book!
Singer, Songwriter, Musician, Author and mom Lisa Loeb:
Illustrator Ryan O’Rourke’s webpage for LISA LOEB’S SONGS FOR MOVIN’ & SHANKIN’ includes views of two page spreads for 3 of the songs:
Monster Stomp from Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’
Words and Music by Lisa Loeb
Illustration by Ryan O’Rourke
See larger and more two page spreads of Ryan O’Rouke’s Illustrations for Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’, here:
ONLINE INFO FOR LISA LOEB’S SONGS FOR MOVIN’ AND SHANKIN’
Wired.com GeekMom interviews Lisa Loeb about her “Movin’ and Shakin’” project:
A Parents Magazine interview with Lisa Loeb about her new book Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’
Buy Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’ for great price at AMAZON.COM
Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’ is also available at online retailers like BARNES&NOBLE.COM
A big thanks to Sterling Publishing for a copy of the book so I could share my thoughts and info!
Sterling Publishing‘s webpage for Lisa Loeb’s Songs for Movin’ and Shakin’
Note to those who might be new to my blog:
I like to think of each one of my posts as evolving exhibits about the song, Singable Picture Book, artists, or subject depicted in the post. So when I find new information or have a new experience, I will add that to the post. That is to say, this is the information, impressions, and experiences I’ve gathered so far. Lisa Loeb’s SONG FOR MOVIN’ AND SHAKIN’ is the kind of book I’m sure will be used many times when I visit classrooms and enjoy the songs, pictures and movements with children and there will likely be much more to share as time goes along.
LISA LOEB IN SINGABLE PICTURE BOOKS
Lisa Loeb’s Silly Sing-Along (The Disappointing Pancake and Other Zany Songs)
Get Movin’! MOVEMENTS, FINGER PLAYS AND DANCES in Singable Picture Books
Do Your Ears Hang Low, a Singable Picture Book
Peanut Butter and Jelly, a Singable Picture Book
Food Glorious Food, a List of Singable Picture Books about Food
Miss Mary Mack, a Singable Picture Book
Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, a Singable Picture Book
REALLY ROSIE AND NUTSHELL KIDS, SONGS BY CAROLE KING IN SINGABLE PICTURE BOOKS:
This card from Eloise (for Mother’s Day 2012) was sitting in front of an open window when driving rain got in…but that doesn’t hurt the love in it one bit.
Sure makes me happy that Eloise likes me to sing for her, because I like it, too. A few minutes of lullaby at night, a few sweet notes, a few sweet moments spent for just the love of being together in song…that’s the stuff, in my humble opinion, that makes life worth living.