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.
Released this week via Universal’s myKaZoo Music, MR. DIDDIE WAH DIDDIE is an hour-long history lesson wrapped within the confines of an album for kids. Reworking songs from the likes of Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters into kid-friendly versions, Kaplan and Bodkins’ banter in-between songs serves as the lesson, explaining history to a new generation of listeners. While “Kickball Kaplan” may not be the finest of “blues names,” Randy does a fine job of creating an impressive collection of songs that range from Delta to Ragtime to Country Blues and more.
It’s just as interesting for adults as it is for kids, but a collection that will probably be most appreciated in households where The Blues is already a staple of regular listening.
The Rock Father Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
FTC Disclosure: A digital copy of this album was provided to The Rock Father by Universal Music for review consideration. The opinions above represent those of James Zahn with input from his children.