James Zahn is not a journalist, nor a blogger, though he may be credited as such by others, or even accept the title... depending on the circumstance. Instead, he considers himself largely to be an "entertainment and lifestyle writer," bringing 25+ years of experience in the entertainment and publishing industries into the family realm as THE ROCK FATHER™.
As a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur, James now finds himself raising a pair young girls - The Rock Daughters™ - along with his wife from their Illinois home.
He is a member of The Toy Insider Parent Advisory Board, has contributed to The Toy Book and writes a regular Star Wars column - Transmissions from a Galaxy Far, Far Away for The Pop Insider. He also regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers.
Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global.
James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.
Learn more here.
PRONG will released new album CARVED INTO STONE tomorrow, and if you've read my review (which I certainly hope you did), then you already know that you need to own it. Today, the band has released their first video from the new set, one for ''Revenge... Best Served Cold,'' the song that I noted as being the first prong jam since 1996's ''Rude Awakening'' to properly secure a space alongside songs like ''Prove You Wrong,'' ''Beg to Differ,'' and ''Snap Your Fingers, Snap Your Neck,'' as a true PRONG classic. Take a look via Carlos and the gang at Noisecreep...
Today is Earth Day 2012, and if you've been visiting The Rock Father for a bit, you might've noticed our EARTH DAY NETWORK PLEDGE Box off to the right on the Gardening blog. We pledged to plant a garden, which is something that will continue having a positive impact long beyond a single day. It's important to remember the Earth not just today, but on the other 364 days of the year. What will YOU and your children be doing to celebrate Earth Day?
THE AVATARS OF THEY, the sock-puppet alter-ego of THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS have released a new music video for their song, Goatee. The song comes from their unfinished album, STRAIGHT OUT OF THE SUITCASE, and is available on the TMBG podcast on iTunes. Check out the video below... I can tell you that it's approved by The Rock Father and Daughter, as I have an 8-inch goatee, and my daughter just rocked out to the song while talking to the puppets. GOATEE!
If you've got kids, have an affection for Kindie Rock, and can get to Brooklyn next weekend, then KindieFest is the event for you!
KindieFest is the place to be for fans, friends, and those involved with the family entertainment scene. I was invited to this (thanks, Stephanie!) but am a party pooper. I'm normally not a big ''event'' guy as-is, but with a new baby due in less than two months, I'm just not up for a trip to NYC from Rock Father HQ in Illinois... this year. But if YOU can get to Brooklyn? Absolutely clear your schedule for April 27-29, and get ready to rock. Full details below.
Somewhere out there, I'm betting by collection of HE-MAN and THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE figures and vehicles still exists. Meticulously cared for and sold around 1988 or so, I have a feeling that it's been tossed around on the collector's circuit by now. It's yet another piece of my own childhood that I wish was still here in my garage or something. While the toys are long gone, I still watch the old FILMATION cartoons, and in fact, I had both HE-MAN and SHE-RA showing in the background via qubo last night as I continued work setting up the nursery for daughter #2. Now, what might be the definitive documentary on the popular toy line is headed our way.
I miss record stores. There was a time when they were abundant, and I would visit many of them on a frequent basis. At one point, I took what I call the 'corporate detour,' and entered the world of big business and big box retailing. My 'dirty little secret' is that from 1996-1998 I worked for Walmart, after which I defected to Super Kmart, lured by headhunter to higher pay and better opportunities. Walmart was not happy. You see, not only was I very good at my job, but I'd just returned from their yearly 'Rah, Rah!' company meetings (held in Kansas, City that year) and revealed my departure about a week later. They paid me out for all remaining vacation time, and I was able to enjoy some relaxation before starting the new gig. You might wonder why I'm telling you this today, and the answer is simple: Rock was involved. Actually, more than just Rock... but all music. Record Store Style.