For Your Consideration for Best Children's Music Album
Esther Crow, the award-winning founder of Thunder & Sunshine, a funky rock band for kids (formed in 2017), released her debut solo album for children, All Together Now, on June 25th. Engineered by GRAMMY®-winning producer Dean Jones, the album's 9 eclectic tracks are woven together by interstitial puppet skits to create a "sonic variety show" for families. All 9 tracks have been played on multiple children's radio shows, both nationally and internationally, and the album recently received the prestigious NAPPA award for 2021. Songs and videos from the album have been featured in: GeekDad, GeekMom, Parent with Angst, Rockmommy, Kids Rhythm and Rock, The Saturday Morning Cereal Bowl, Electric Kids, Kindie Rockstars, and Double Dip Recess on WFMU.
All Together Now is packed with songs ranging from traditional rock/blues, to 60's psychedelic, to Elton-John-type ballads, many infused with environmental calls-to-action for families that want to do their part in protecting the Earth. As an advocate for environmental and social justice, Crow spent most of 2020 adding a few more pointedly educational numbers to her repertoire of playful songs about animals and insects. One jazzy song on the album, Bees Beavers and Bats, featuring 2-time GRAMMY® winner Lucy Kalantari, sheds light on how these creatures are crucial to helping our climate crisis. Says Crow: "I did a lot of research when writing lyrics for some of these songs, which was very enlightening. Did you know that bats pollinate bananas and mangos? That was news to me!"
Crow hopes that her album will call attention to some urgent matters we collectively face while introducing fun ways parents and kids can bond as they learn to help the environment. Her puppets, created by Jeff Lewoncyzk, and voiced by her, also play a prominent role on the album, and weave comedy, and kindness, into some more serious topics. Hard to be Happy, a duet sung by Bernie the Bee and Moonice the Cow, "sounds like it could be a classic Sesame Street song as it charmingly offers a positive message about self-respect. On her solo debut, Crow has delivered an album that is easy to be happy about!” (from the NAPPA Awards review of the album).
All Songs Written by Esther Crow
Produced, recorded and mixed by Dean Jones at No Parking Studios.
Mastered by Alan Douches at West West Side.
Esther Crow: lead vocals, puppet voices, kazoo, and guitar on Caterpillar
Dan Crow: guitar *except Bees, Beavers and Bats and Caterpillar; bass on Muskrat
Vincent Crow: vocals, percussion, violin
Dean Jones: drums, percussion, keyboards, trombone, bass, vocals
Lucy Kalantari: featured vocalist on Bees, Beavers and Bats
Anna Sarris: vocals on Inchworm
Leslie Goshko: keyboards on Hard to be Happy
Ken McGloin - guitar on Bees, Beavers and Bats
Jason Sarubbi - upright bass on Bees, Beavers and Bats
Album Artwork by: Elena Fox