I make references to THE BLUES BROTHERS all the time here on The Rock Father. To find them, you'd have to do some sniffing around, as they're subtle. MR. DIDDIE WAH DIDDIE, the new album from RANDY KAPLAN should warrant such a reference, but the only thing I can really come up with is that the narrator, Lightnin’ Bodkins (suspiciously Kaplan-esque) is sorta like Cab Calloway was as Curtis: He's there to teach the kids the ways of The Blues.

Monday, July 09 2012 14:46

SING TO YOUR BABY (Book and Music Review)

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With a newborn here in The Rock Father house, it's been interesting to revisit some experiences that we just went through three years ago with daughter #1, but with newer tools. SING TO YOUR BABY - Love Songs & Sing-Plays for New Families is one of those things that we didn't have the first time around, but has been a whole lot of fun for the second go. A book and companion CD by Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer with illustrations by James Nocito, SING TO YOUR BABY has been a hit with our not-quite-three-year-old as well.

Monday, June 25 2012 12:24

KinderAngst - Self-titled (Album Review)

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There isn't a wide range of punk rock available for kids, and unless I'm mistaken, I thought that Chicago's THE BOOGERS were the only game in town. Not anymore as the Kindie Rock world now has another band of merry misfits raising their kid-sized fists in the name of rock N' roll and education. That band is KinderAngst.

Tuesday, June 12 2012 21:18

Ellen and Matt - IT'S LOVE (Album Review)

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IT'S LOVE, the second album from L.A.-based kindie duo Ellen & Matt is packed with cute, retro-flavored goodness, just as the cover art would indicate. The rainbow-colored digipack conjures thoughts of the 70s and early 80s, while reminding me of what the outside of Toys R Us used to look like (also part inspiration for the color scheme of this website, I think). Not quite as even or as polished as certain genre peers, there's a rawness that I really dig, epecially when the rock is fully cranked up.

So here we are on a Sunday Afternoon and I'm posting a review of ALL ON A SUNDAY AFTERNOON, the new album from the SUGAR FREE ALLSTARS. Yes, the timing is intentional, though this review was actually keyed into The Rock Father's somewhat-evil supercomputer several days ago and set to post at 12:01pm CST, so that technically it would post after noon - by a minute. Set for release this Tuesday on Wiser Music, ALL ON A SUNDAY AFTERNOON may not be a record for everyone, hence, I must ask you a question: Do you like Funk?

My wife and I first discovered the Putumayo World Music label back in 2003 when they released their FRENCH CAFE compilation. I was still working for the Musicland Group at the time, and I grabbed her a copy to feed into her obsession with all things France. We'd later pick up their ITALIAN MUSICAL ODYSSEY, ITALIAN CAFE, and GREECE: A MUSICAL ODYSSEY collections. Like their tagline states, they're ''Guaranteed to make you feel good" in their upbeat presentation of selections from around the Globe. Fast-forward nearly a decade, and we've got kids, and Putumayo has a Kids label.

Tuesday, May 29 2012 08:03

The BOOGERS - LET'S GO! (2010, Album Review)

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Representing Chicago via Berwyn, the BOOGERS are quite possibly the loudest Children's band you're ever gonna see (until I get my Kindie-Metal project going). After taking a look at their 2008 debut album back in March (read the review here), it's only appropriate that I throw down some virtual ink devoted to their 2010 follow-up, LET'S GO! After all, they should be about due for a new record at some point in the near future...

MAKE BELIEVERS is a massive record. As I mentioned a month or so ago when the album announcement was posted here on The Rock Father, the little one and I have been spinning the new album from SECRET AGENT 23 SKIDOO here at HQ for awhile now. It's another one of those special albums that warranted holding back the review until release date was almost upon us, simply because you need to remember to buy this. Why? Because I'll throw down some info in the first paragraph that you'd normally have to read on for: This is a 5-Star Record.

There's two things that Claude Monet and Pierre-Auguste Renoir have in common. No, it's not that they were both French, nor that they were painters of the 'Impressionist' style... and while they both had impressive facial hair (something I appreciate very much), that's not it, either. What they share in common is that they've both provided middle names for my daughters. My 'Monet' is sitting next to me as I type this sentence, while our 'Renoir' is in it's last month of incubation at this very moment. What they don't share in common is that only Monet is paid tribute on PICASSO, THAT'S WHO! (AND SO CAN YOU!), the new album from HOPE HARRIS.

The result of musical training that began as young as age 5, CHERRI BOMB serves up an impressive full-length debut on THIS IS THE END OF CONTROL. Out this week on Hollywood Records, the album shows a band that performs at a level well-beyond their years - something no doubt guided and honed by manager Samantha Maloney (drummer formerly of HOLE, MOTLEY CRUE, PEACHES among others) and the production team of Red Decibel (Adam Watts, Andy Dodd & Gannin Arnold), while brought to a perfect mix by Chris Lord-Alge.

My toddler's first comment regarding LUCKY DIAZ and THE FAMILY JAM BAND was ''They're tricking me.'' I'd never thought of it, but the munchkin had never seen a CD that came packaged in a cardboard sleeve before... until A POTLUCK arrived at Rock Father HQ. No jewel case or digipack to open, she kept flipping it over trying to figure out why it didn't open up like a book. In a lot of ways, the situation reminded me a lot of the old KNIGHT RIDER episode where K.A.R.R. took offense to the ordering speaker at a fast food restaurant and destroyed it for being a ''clever trick.'' Fortunately, the little one didn't destroy the CD, but she did hand it back to me with a fairly irritated look on her face. 

Monday, May 07 2012 10:43


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I'm a sucker for a good cover song, and that's something that I've noted often over the years. In a way, I guess you could say that I'm a 'collector' of covers, with countless compilations devoted to artists putting their personal stamp on another artist's work residing on the shelves and in the files of my personal archives. This week there's a new piece available in the form of A LITTLE LOVE, a 10-song collection of acoustic re-imaginings from RENEE & JEREMY. While the duo is known for their kid-friendly works, A LITTLE LOVE is really an album for both kids and grownups alike.

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