Thank you to Justin Roberts and Sugar Mountain P.R. for participating in the Bloggy Birthday Blowout Event on Goodie Goodie Gumdrops!
There's nothing like having a child to reawaken the child within. Watching Nate learn new things and experience the world makes me wax nostalgic for the days when I was young. Spinning and dancing in circles until I was so dizzy I could pass out. Swimming in the ocean until my lips were blue and my palms and soles were prunes. Riding my pink bike with its white floral basket and rainbow streamers up and down the narrow alley beside our house. Sledding in the park down the biggest snow bank, my wet mittens clinging to my chapped hands. These are all cherished memories from my past. I love music that can evoke that childish spirit inside. And Justin Roberts fits the bill.
Justin Roberts got his start in music in the early 90's as part of the Minneapolis-based indie-rock band Pimentos for Gus. At the same time, he was moonlighting as a Montessori preschool teacher. Naturally, he began writing and singing songs for his students. After a college friend and producer discovered his talent, they decided to record his songs professionally. The rest is history. Garnering numerous national awards and recognition, Justin is now a bonafide "all-star" on the kindie scene.
His seventh family album, Jungle Gym, takes listeners on a journey through iconic childhood experiences that kids will relate to and parents will remember. From gym class parachutes to sleepovers to snow days, it's a rocking ride from beginning to end. The 12 original tracks feature intricate vocals, pounding drums, vintage guitars, strange and fanciful time changes and elegant flutes and French horns for an eclectic sound that stands apart from the rest of the playground.
1. We Go Duck
3. Trick or Treat
4. Sign My Cast
5. Gym Class Parachute
6. Obsessed by Trucks
7. Cardboard Box
8. Snow Day
9. Never Getting Lost
10. New Haircut
11. Fire Drill
12. 2 x 4
From the moment I heard the first track, I was hooked. Justin's vocal stylings are part Paul Simon, part Ben Folds. The lyrics feel as if they could've been written by a child - genuine and real. Almost every song brought to mind my own childhood memory. I flashed back to hiding under the rainbow parachute on Fun Fridays in P.E. class, breaking my arm and wearing a cast for all my friends to sign, and standing in line near the exits for a practice fire drill. The memories flooded me, plastering a grin on my face that didn't fade even after the last song.
My personal favorites are "We Go Duck" (about the anticipation of being tagged in a game of "Duck Duck Goose"), "Trick of Treat" (about the fun of getting candy for Halloween) and "New Haircut" (about the weariness of visiting the barber). As a parent, I also have a special place in my heart for "Never Getting Lost", an emotional ballad about getting lost and found. Nate's favorite seems to be the catchy, alt-rock "Obsessed by Trucks". He shrieks in delight and jumps all around the minute he hears it. Probably because he himself is a fan of "da-da-da-dump trucks".
Bottom line: You won't grow tired playing on this Jungle Gym anytime soon.
BUY IT: You can purchase Jungle Gym and other Justin Roberts albums online at www.justinrobertsmusic.com or Amazon.com (ARV $13.99).
WIN IT: One lucky winner is going to win their very own copy of Justin Roberts' Jungle Gym!
MAIN COURSE (MANDATORY ENTRY): Tell me one of your favorite childhood memories. Remember to please leave your email address in your comment if it isn't visible on your profile to prevent disqualification!
SUGAR ON TOP (BONUS ENTRIES): To maximize your chances of winning, you may do any or all of the following. Be sure to complete the above mandatory entry or your bonus entries will not count!
1.) Follow my blog and/or subscribe via reader or email. Comment telling me which method you chose. If you already follow or subscribe, that counts! (1 entry each)
2.) Follow me and Justin Roberts on Twitter and tweet about this contest. You may use the following tweet or come up with one of your own:
Nostalgia for parents and music kids can relate to! Win @MusicianJustin's new album Jungle Gym @kris10chumley ENDS 7/31 http://bit.ly/cKlshs
Just leave me a comment with your tweet link. (1 entry)
3.) Join the Justin Roberts email list. (1 entry)
4.) Become a fan of Justin Roberts on Facebook. (1 entry)
5.) "Like" Goodie Goodie Gumdrops on Facebook. (1 entry)
6.) Add my Bloggy Birthday Blowout event button to your site and comment with a link where I can find it. (1 entry)
7.) Add my blog button to your site and comment with a link where I can find it. (1 entry)
Giveaway will end on July 31, 2010 at 11:59pm EST. Open to U.S. only. Winner will be chosen via Random.org and will have 48 hours to respond to congratulatory email or prize will be forfeited and another winner will be chosen.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this album from Beth at Sugar Mountain P.R. to facilitate my candid review. I was not compensated in any other way for this post. The thoughts and opinions expressed in my review and purely mine. Your experience may differ.