Archive for the ‘Angry Birds’ Category

croninSOUNDTRACK: THE OKEE DOKEE BROTHERS-“Can You Canoe?” (2012).

okeecanoe I found out about The Okee Dokee Brothers from Kids Corner.  They are two guys (one on guitar one on banjo) who sing folk songs about going outside, “with a goal to inspire children and their parents to get outside and experience nature. They believe this can motivate kids to gain a greater respect for the natural world, their communities and themselves” (from their website).

This is a fun folk song–easy to sing along to and very catchy.  It reminds me in spirit (but not voice) of John Denver–the guys have very good harmonies as well.

And since spring time may (finally, maybe) be coming, we should be busting out our canoe soon as well.  Perhaps we’ll sing along to this

Can you canoe on a little boat built for two?
Can you canoe? I’ll be your captain and your crew
Can you canoe if there’s nothing better to do?
I wanna float down a river with you.

In addition to the catchy chorus, there are some great lines in the song, too.  Like:

“We don’t need no outlets, we don’t need no wires
Primetime entertainment will be lightnin’ bugs and fires”


“I’ll take the bow brother, you can take the stern
I’ll move us forward, while you choose when to turn”


“Sound waves on the water don’t need to be amplified.”

I have become a quick convert to this band whom I’d not heard of until very recently.  I’m looking forward to my kids hearing this (and watching the videos too).

Here’s the video:

[READ: April 15, 2014] The Chicken Squad (1)

I grabbed this book for the kids because it looked like a lot of fun.  And indeed it was.  I didn’t realize that Cronin was the author of such fun kids books as Click, Clack, Moo and Diary of a Worm (and other insects).  This book is quite different from those picture books in that this tells a (admittedly short) longer story.  And it has chapters!

The story is told by the family dog, J.J. Tully, a retired search and rescue dog.  J.J. Tully is in charge of the yard and that includes watching out for the chickens.  He introduces us to the four chicks who live in the yard: Dirt (speciality: foreign languages, math, colors, computer codes), Sweetie [who has glasses] (speciality: breaking and entering, interrupting), Poppy (speciality watching the shoe [which is where they live]) an Sugar [has a triangle head–which comes in for a very funny joke later] (specialty: None that i can see).

The plot begins when a squirrel named Tail comes running into the coop.  He is in a panic shouting, “It’s after me.”  When the chicks question him, he can only get out variations of: “Its big and scary!!.” “It’s BIG and it’s SCARY!!”  And while he is panicking, trying to get out the details of what it looks like: (Big), J.J. comes in to see what the ruckus in.  And Tail faints dead away. (more…)

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My son, Clark, loves Angry Birds.  I’ve played it a few times and found it enjoyable, but he is obsessed.  He is absolutely the target market for this song.  And who knows maybe it will get him to like classical music.

I wasn’t sure if I’d recognize the tune, but it is already ingrained in my head.

This version is wonderful.  It sounds like it might be from a Tim Burton movie. 

The full CD is a collection of video game themes.  We don’t have a console, so I don’t know any of the other songs on the disc. But I do rather like this one.  I can’t wait to see his face when he hears it.

Check it out on NPR!

[READ: December 15, 2011] “What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank”

This story went from being a (rather) funny piece about Hasidic Jews to being a (rather) emotional story about marriage, religion and self-preservation.

As the story opens, Mark and Lauren are visiting the narrator and Deb.  Deb and Lauren grew up together.  But after school Lauren met Mark and they moved to Israel where they became Hasidic (and took the new names Shoshana and Yerucham).  As the story opens, the narrator (a non-observant Jew) is trying to hold his tongue while these religious folks are well, kind of judging  them.  It’s wonderfully summed up by this comment:

“Jewish to you?” I say.  “The hat, the beard, the blocky shoes.  A lot of pressures, I’d venture, to look jewish to you.  Like, say, maybe Ozzy Osbourne or the guys from Kiss, like them telling Paul Simon, ‘You do not look like a musician to me.'”  [Is there a joke in there since the guys from Kiss are indeed Jewish, or no?]

The narrator and Deb has a son, Trevor, who is sixteen.  The scene where he comes into the room to discover the Hasidic couple is hilariously subtle (very well written).  Then we learn that Shoshana and Yerucham (which Deb calls them) have ten children–all girls.  Yikes.  But the narrator continues to refer to them (at least in his story) as Mark and Lauren.  And the more questions he asks the more we find out that although they keep Holy the traditions, they are a bit lax about some of the rules (maybe?)  I actually don’t know the rules so I don’t know if what they’re doing is “wrong” or not.  And, amusingly there’s a bit in the story in which Yerucham complains about non-Jews giving them shit for what they do–“Can you eat in there?” kind of questions.

So, when the narrator asks if they can drink, Yerucham says he can make the whiskey kosher.  And that starts them on their way. (more…)

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