Listen to this: New jams from the Okees, Michael & the Rockness Monsters, and Dana


Conservation is weighing heavy on the minds of many, and this includes those in the family music scene. The Minnesota Zoo commisioned The Okee Dokee Brothers to compose a single all about wildlife conservation. The song, Countin’ on Me, debuted at a Zoo concert event and all song download sales benefit the Zoo’s conservation efforts. The song talks about ecological stewardship through cultivating an appreciation of watching nature at work and how seemingly small eco-systems can signify the health of an entire habitat. Lyrically, this song dreamily guides the listener to visualize details of weather systems affecting plant life and wildlife, and speaks to their importance to humankind. Then, the perspective is switched to suggest that all of these pieces of the natural world, in turn, need humans in order to continue to survive and thrive. The song mentions specifically habitats that are vital to the prairie states, on which Minnesota Zoo efforts have been focused, such as rehabilitating native butterfly, bison, and trumpeter swan populations. Musically, the song is sweet and mellow and invites the listener to hone in on different sounds of the natural world that are incorporated into the recording. With Earth Day upon us, we can all do a good deed for our ears and for our wildlife by downloading a copy of  Countin’ on Me. It’s good for the planet!



Quick question for the parental set reading this– if you ever saw Blue Man Group perform, did you ever wonder who the were the people behind the scenes who help bring that show to life? Wonder no more, at least wonder no more about one of the contributors to Blue Man Group. After being a part of its writing team for 10 years, Michael Napolitano went on to create the Preschool of Rock and has a kindie band called Michael & The Rockness Monsters. Riding on the energy and success of their eponymously named first album (The Pirate Song hit #2 on 13 Under 13, Kids’ Place Live), Funny Faces is their second album and is sounding just as promising as the first. Funk-inspired and lyrically filled with the most sincere silliness, this album is sure to appeal to the grade school set, as well as their parents. The album opens with a 70’s-esque funk track called Cardboard Cutout Man. Other stand out tracks are Feet for Hands (has a very catchy ska beat), Mr. Pickle (has a great bass line), and Squirrel Fight (a slight musical departure from the predominant funk groove, this track has a rock edge). Funny Faces will drop on 4/28/17 and we here at ETM can’t wait!

Jersey Peeps! Michael and the Rockness Monsters will be playing at Liberty State Park in Jersey City, NJ on April 22nd.

New Yorkers! Michael and the Rockness Monsters will be playing at Madison Square Park  in NY, NY on June 15th.


DANA, Dana’s Best Jump & Jam Tunes

What if you could have that Music Together class that you attend once a week with your toddler/ preschooler mixed with a kid’s exercise class? Something that would get your wee ones jumping and dancing and shaking those egg shakers to a steady beat? Look no further than Dana‘s new album, Dana’s Best Jump & Jam Tunes. Musically, the album has an overall country western sound. This is especially present in Wiggle Workout (which, if given the steps, you could DEFINITELY Line-Dance to), Barnyard Hoedown (just read the title, enough said), Five Green and Speckled Frogs, and Grandma’s Kitchen Band. Dana’s songs are upbeat and positive, with lyrics encouraging pitching in and working together, and her voice is reminiscent of kindie rocker Gwendolyn Sanford, clear and sweet. Jump & Jam Tunes is due out later this month, get yer overalls and your dancing boots ready! The album is available for pre-order through Bandcamp.

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