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It’s kinda weird that both FARMER JASON and THE OKEE DOKEE BROTHERS have used the title ”Can You Canoe?” for releases in 2012, but since the ”same title” issue happens all the time in other musical realms, I guess they all get a pass. In the case of the latter, THE OKEE DOKEE BROTHERS literally took a month-long canoe trip down the might Mississippi River last summer, experiencing nature while breaking out the guitar and banjo for some music jamming action. The end result of that journey is being presented in a CD/DVD collection called CAN YOU CANOE? as the first installment of a planned ”Adventure Album” series for familes.

As THE OKEE DOKEE BROTHERS, childhood friends Joe Mailander and Justin Lansing have announced a May 15, 2012 release date for the set, more details on which can be read from the press release that follows the trailer below.

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From the Official Press Release:

okeecoverIt all began last June when Joe and Justin embarked on a canoe trip in Minneapolis and continued down the river for the next 30 days until they arrived at the St. Louis Gateway Arch. During their month-long journey on the Mississippi, they camped, canoed, filmed and most importantly, composed the songs that make up their new album for kids and families.

Can You Canoe? was produced by Dean Jones in his Hudson River Valley straw-bale studio. Guest appearances from Garth Hudson (The Band), Elizabeth Mitchell (You Are My Flower), as well as Morgan Taylor and Rachel Loshak (Gustafer Yellowgold) add sparkle to these joyful songs.

The songs on the album range from direct references of the river (“Can you Canoe?,” “Mr. and Mrs. Sippi,” “Haul Away Joe”) to more general topics in the outdoor motif (“The Bullfrog Opera,” “Campin’ Tent,” “Thousand Star Hotel”).The Okee Dokee Brothers also use the river as a metaphor to address deeper themes such as the struggles in a friendship (“Brother, Along for the Ride”) and life’s changes and phases (“Roll on River”).

The 40-minute supplemental film tells the story of The Okee Dokee Brothers’ trip while including educational segments, camping shenanigans, music videos, interviews and pristine nature scenes.All the footage was filmed on location along the Mississippi River, including a visit with The Original River Rat and a group of young Tom Sawyer-Huck Finn-Becky Thatcher look-alikes in Hannibal, MO.

Joe and Justin draw inspiration from their experiences while providing a creative framework for the audience to explore their own imaginations. “We hope a project like this can inspire kids to take an active role in their lives, get outside and make their dreams realities,” they explain. All the songs and footage on this CD/DVD set are tied together by themes of rivers, friendship, and especially outdoor adventure.

The Okee Dokee Brothers will perform at World Cafe Live on April 28th and they are planning a busy summer concert tour, including dozens of Minnesota public libraries. They’ll be featured performers at the Kansas City Jiggle Jam over Memorial Day weekend and will host a CD release celebration event at Hennepin Park in Minneapolis on May 19th. 
 

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