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Music Review: Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies – Sing a Little Song

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One of the coolest things about modern kidtunes is that CDs are not restricted to one style of music. Brian Vogan and His Good Buddies provide proof of this on their collection Sing a Little Song.  The first song, “How to Fly,” is bright, cheery—for-kids-only. What a jolt when “27,” a counting song starts and the listener is presented with a complete change of mood and tempo, a more adult sound accompanying counting lyrics.

What can you expect from Sing a Little Song? A lot! The words may be kid-oriented, but adults will find the music strangely familiar. There are rock, folk, English invasion, Harry Chapin, Sparks (yes, Sparks!), Elvis, Arlo Guthrie, and doo-wop influences, among others. Songs cover a wide range of topics that interest kids—space, dinosaurs, dogs, giant turkeys, frogs, assorted moving vehicles, and flying.

“27” and “One Tiny Little Frog” are counting songs, “Cross the Street” is about looking both ways and being safe (“you got to look both ways, even if the sign says it’s okay”), and “Wash Your Hands” makes it sound like a very good idea. Will your kids be more inclined to wash their germy little hands if you sing this clever song with them? Maybe.  It’s got to work better than “If you don’t wash those hands…” and “How many times do I have to tell you…”

There are also songs that tell stories; “Dinosaurs” is about visiting dinosaurs in a time machine and “Last Thanksgiving” tells the tale of the world’s (or at least the state’s) largest turkey—his name is Jack. The CD closes with a charming lullaby, “A Perfect Sky.”

Vogan contributes vocals, acoustic guitar, and electric guitar to Sing a Little Song. His good buddies are Kory Christian (drums, harmonies, lead guitar), Jeremy Reinhold (piano, keyboards, synthesizers), Benjamin Baier (bass guitar), Barrett Jones (guitar, harmonies), and Libby Molamphy (harmonies, vocals). Rachael Flotard provides co-lead vocals on “How to Fly,” and Jaren Nelson (lead guitar), Chris Borgia (bass guitar), Fred Hawkinson (trombone), Billy Hoover (trumpet), and Nick Cisik (drums) make guest appearances.

 

Bottom Line: Would I buy Sing a Little Song? Yes, these are neat songs for kids (and Jersey makes an appearance in “Last Thanksgiving”).

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