Tuesday, December 05, 2006

***Chucky Woodbine***

A classic reborn! Years ago, Auburn University's student radio station, WEGL, was adamantly anti-commercial. During my senior year, I remember hearing this lo-fi, herkity jerkity, melodic song called "Double Feature" about, I think, monsters and secret messages on cereal boxes. Now, that memory would have completely faded into the ether of collegehood if not for ... TAH DAH! ... the reissue of Chucky Woodbine's Misleading.

This quartet from Massachussets made a cassette-only version of Misleading back in the late-80s that included songs about woodland creatures, bullies, and some weird guy named Fred Villari. Throw in a couple of instrumentals and a punk song called "Roadkill" (chorus: "Roadkill! Roadkill!"), and you have an amusingly silly, inventive, do-it-yourselfer worthy of way more exposure than it got.

Is this kids' music? I dunno, is "Yellow Submarine", or pretty much everything Jonathan Richman ever recorded? My point is that kids are smart and have incredibly varied tastes, so anything that seems entertaining and is a little off the beaten path (i.e. - doesn't come with tie-in merchandise) should be readily introduced to kids. Go ahead, let them hear what's out there and they'll decide what they like. If your upper-elementary kid is into quirky music, is thinking about starting a band, or just likes to decipher sometimes impenetrable lyrics, he'll dig Chucky Woodbine.

4 comments:

Michelle said...

If you're looking for kids music that doesn't want to make adults rip their hair out, I'd like to suggest looking at Ken Lonnquist from Madison, Wisconsin. He has some of the most artfully written kids stuff I've heard.

Great themes. No syrup! I even play the stuff when the kids aren't around!

By way of full disclosure--he's my ex brother-in-law, but really, his stuff is great. His website is at http://www.kenland.com. This week, Lands End company posted a new holiday tune they commissioned for their "Hi Santa" site available as a free download from iTunes.

Kelly said...

hey, just started reading this blog and saw this post. I'm loving me some Chucky Woodbine so thanks for that.

also, War Eagle!

Josh said...

I saw Chucky Woodbine in a little pub on Martha's Vineyard the summer of '91 or '92. I bought the tape they had with them (Misleading) and got one of the guys home addresses so I could get the next album due out a few months later. $7 and an envelope and I got it.

For years I would google them every six months or so and no hits. Imagine my happy surprise when all this came up.

The second cassette, Erasums Fontaine (I think) is even more fun than Misleading.

Does anyone have a POC for the band, info on if they are still playing or writing?

I guess I should get both of them digitized before I wear them out.

I'll be back here to check on responses to CW.

Later,
Josh

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