Weinkauf’s Children’s Debut Is One Of 2014’s Top 10 Best New Children’s Albums

Courtesy:  Megaforce Records/Idlewild Recordings

Courtesy: Megaforce Records/Idlewild Recordings

Bassist Danny Weinkauf is best known for his work with the quirky cult favorite band They Might Be Giants. He will be known for much more when he releases his debut children’s album No School Today next month. No School Today is just as enjoyable for parents that know Weinkauf for his work with TMBG as it is for the children at whom it is aimed. That’s because the songs aside, its sound is at times similar to that of TMBG’s catalogue. Weinkauf even openly admitted in an interview to promote his new album that the album’s opener, ‘Archaeology’ was written in response to fans of TMBG confusing the song ‘Paleontologist’, calling it his [Weinkauf’s] “Archeology”song. He said, “Several times after a Giants show, people would come up and tell me how much they liked my“Archaeology” song. They were confusing the title of ‘Paleontologist,’ but I decided to honor them by writing another song.” It is a wonderful way for grown up fans of MTBG to introduce their own children to their favorite band. Another of this album’s songs that the whole family will enjoy is the mid-tempo rocker ‘Champion of the Spelling Bee.’ This song features Weinkauf’s son Kai on vocals. And the vocal talents of the younger Weinkauf are surprisingly impressive. These two songs are both great examples of what makes No School Today such a fun record. They are collectively only a portion of what makes this album so enjoyable. Just as fun for the whole family is ‘The Moon is Made of Cheese.’ The song’s title is self-explanatory. At the same time that it uses the old joke of the moon’s composition, it also teaches a short musical history lesson and even pokes fun at the conspiracy theorists out there. All these elements combined together make this one more of this album’s highest points. When set alongside the rest of the album’s songs, it becomes one more part of a whole album that every family should add to their child’s music library.
No School Today is a wonderful album for the whole family. That’s because Danny Weinkauf incorporates elements of They Might Be Giants throughout the course of the album’s sixteen songs. Right from the album’s outset, he pays tribute to fans of TMBG with a semi-companion piece to the song ‘Paleontology,’titled ‘Archaeology.’ Weinkauf noted in an interview promoting his new album that ‘Archaeology’ is a tribute to fans of TMBG who constantly called ‘Paleontology’ by the wrong name. At the same time that it’s a companion to the noted TMBG song, it’s just as enjoyable in its own shoes because it teaches a fun, musical science lesson for young listeners. Weinkauf sings in the song, “We’ll survey around the grounds/Seeking data that abounds/Then postulate on what we’ve found/Will our reasoning be sound?” Listeners can actually see scientists probing an excavation site, gathering items and studying them as he sings. That ease of visualization, the simple lyrics, and the song’s seemingly Beatles influenced sound collectively make the song even more fun for listeners of all ages. And it’s only the beginning of the fun for Weinkauf’s fans. Another one of the many high points shared throughout the course of this album is the grammatically-themed song, ‘Champion of the Spelling Bee.’
Danny Weinkauf’s debut children’s album is loaded with more high points than can be noted in one sitting. One of those many high points has already been raised in the album’s opener. Another high point worth mentioning is the grammatically-themed light rocker, ‘Champion of the Spelling Bee.’ Weinkauf’s son Kai takes center stage in this song. And he does so in surprisingly impressive fashion, singing, “Is it French/Is it Latin/Does it come from the Greek/Tell me of its derivation/Is it ooh/Is it oh that you speak/Do I have correct pronunciation/I’ve been readin’ every night from the dictionary/Memorizin’every word/My teacher says that I could be extraordinary/If I just would put in the work.” The young man’s vocals are quite sharp as is the song’s driving guitar line. The song gains even more footing in the fact that directly or not, it serves as a starting point in promoting literacy among young listeners. It’s an added bonus to a song that thanks to its catchy hooks and choruses is already a joy to begin with. That added to the mix makes it all the more enjoyable of a listen whether in the classroom, the living room or even in the car.
Both ‘Champion of the Spelling Bee’ and ‘Archaeology’ are great additions to No School Today. There is at least one more song from this standout debut from Danny Weinkauf worth noting in just one sitting. That song is the science-themed song, ‘The Moon is Made of Cheese.’ The title itself makes one want to listen to the song. And in listening to the song, audiences will not be disappointed. Weinkauf playfully pokes fun at all the conspiracy theorists who believe the moon landing never happened all while teaching a history lesson about the moon landing. He even incorporates the old joke of the moon being made of cheese. The song’s punk style musical backing makes the song as a whole even more enjoyable for listeners of all ages. As enjoyable as the song is, it’s only one more of so many wonderful examples of why No School Today is without a doubt, one of the top ten best new children’s albums of 2014. No School Today can be pre-ordered online now via Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/No-School-Today-Danny-Weinkauf/dp/B00IQFBZPA/ref=sr_1_1?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1395837036&sr=1-1&keywords=Danny+Weinkauf.
Parents and kids can check out the lyrics to every song on No School Today on Danny Weinkauf’s official website, http://www.dannyweinkauf.com. While there, fans can also learn more about who played on the album, keep up with the latest news from Danny, and even check out music videos for some of Danny’s songs. Fans can also keep up with all of the latest from Danny Weinkauf on his official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/Danny.Weinkauf. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

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