Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Chibi Kodama Interview

In a world of conformity...
In a world of greed and oppression...
One family rises above the lies...
One family struggles above the fear...
One family creates a wonderful daring life & album...

This spring...

They believe in fairies...
They do.
But most of all...
They believe you!

Coming to a speaker or ear buds near you!


Tell me about the band name and the concept?

 - (John) - Well, it comes from our love for Japanese film maker Hiyao Miyazaki. We love his works. And through them we learned of the word "Chibi" which typically refers to things that are small and cute. The Kodama are tree spirits in the movie Princess Mononoke. They were these small, adorably creepy little things that had all kinds of mischief in their countenance. (sort of like kids, you know?) They would terrify people at first, but, if you let them show you around they'd lead you to lovely adventure, and also, to healing. 

The lyrics sound like protests. What are the messages you're trying to convey?

- (all discussing sitting in living room) - I ask the question, lots of answers... "Donald Trump" "Girl Power" "black people's lives matter" "we protest mean people" 

(discussion ensues) Yvonne states, "We do stay away from the negative focus to be purposely ambiguous, so the question makes sense." 

I state - "I think we protest control. We protest manipulation and any form of freedom stealing mentality." 

The girls agree. 

I think this is a big deal, and I'm really glad you asked this. Because I didn't see it. We really have a passion for liberation. Kids need to know that there allowed to question, think for themselves, test the possibilities, express... you know? It's such an important message. In total though, I think we protest control. That may sound bizarre... we're not anti-authoritarian. Authority is good. Great authority is worthy of questioning and will hold up to it. Friends are good, GREAT friends will let you question them and you will grow together and enable independent thought. 

I hear electronica and rock on your album. What are your influences?

- (John) - Me? I love a good hook. I love the 90's grunge and post grunge. I love 90's music in general. I love pop with noise. It's easily known that I love Weezer and Green Day. I loved the sounds that God Lives Underwater used on that "From Your Mouth" song. I loved Stabbing Westward. I also loved the Violent Femmes, Pumpkins, Soul Asylum and such. All for totally different reasons. I love things that grab my heart and grab my ears and really give me something to belt it out to. 

Yvonne draws on 90's singers like Alanis, Natalie Merchant and the Cranberries. She loves those voices. 

How do you write songs as a family?

- (john and girls discuss) - We discussed this a lot the other night when Funky Kids Radio in Australia interviewed us. It sort of goes like this. We live our life, and sometimes stuff happens. We'll go through big shifts and changes, and we'll channel them into ideas that I'll then channel into songs. Now and again the girls will write a tune, like "I'm Always Right" on our We're Not Going Crazy... album. Allie wrote that one a couple of years ago and I took her tune and reworked it to be a Chibi song. 

We don't want to write about things we don't own. We want to believe what we're singing. Sometimes we sing about what we've learned. Other times we sing about what we hope to learn. Either way, it's about life, and we think that it's probably about everyone's life. 

The lyrics and the music sounds like it's geared for older kids. Who is your target audience?

- (john) - Sarah Gardner and I have mulled this around for a while. I mean, I know we're not making pre-school music. I know it's not the wiggles. It's not even the Not-Its! I am surrounded by teen/tweens. It's what we're thinking about. I don't sit down and go, "Hey, I'mma write me a tweenie-song!" 

I think our target audience is families. But I've been realizing that it seems to be a little more specific than that. It's seeming more and more to be for people who've had a rough ride and really want to know that there's hope on the other side. It's for people who want to protest and fight for love, life and mental freedom without embracing negativity. 

I started noticing this as we began singing on the street corners in downtown Knoxville recently. A couple in their early 20's walked up and started listening. They loved each and every song it seemed. They latched onto it, bought CDs and have been so encouraged. (I love it when people write us and tell us about it) 

So, I'm not entirely sure if that answers your question, but we've begun to call it "All-rock"... it's for everyone who will listen and sing along. 

What can folks expect at your show?  

At an acoustic show, you can expect us to stand around, dance around and belt it out like we're leading the pub in a song. We love doing it that way. 

At electric shows, well, we're working on that. As we aren't a typical band, we play to backing tracks of our tunes. Having all 7 of us on stage, we do our best to bring the energy and sincerity of each song to the audience. We want it to feel as big as we can. Lately, we've been rehearsing loudly in our living room to hone in our skills for shows we'll be doing this summer, most likely NEAR you up there. 

You can expect dancing with ribbons and streamers. You can expect us to encourage you to utilize your finest air guitar and to use only the best in rock and roll poses. There may or may not be explosive confetti. There will be cute children, big guitars and a whole lot of "hey heys!" and "Go gos!" 

Is there an outstanding moment during recording or shooting a video that you would like to share?

 - (john) - There's a few fun ones. 

For one, when finishing "We're Not Going Crazy... " I had just had a very not fun surgery. I had lots of time on my hands, but I wasn't allowed to sit up, my feet had to be higher than my head. Sooooo... I had the girls help me set up my computer by my bed and my microphone right over the bed. I recorded the last couple of songs, guitars, vocals and all, lying there on the bed. The chief of which was Allie's song, "I'm always right." So, if you listen to it, you're hearing me singing on my back. 

2nd - Dragons was written, recorded and completed in 2 1/2 weeks. We got so inspired after our experience at Kindiecomm that I just had to get it out. I barely remember writing the individual songs, only that they showed up like a flood. 

3rd - We have truly enjoyed making our music videos. I think the last two have been favorites of mine. (Countdown and Between Main Street and Neverland) We want them to be fun and expressive, and hopefully, progressively more pleasing to the eye. The video for Eleven from the new album was pretty funny to film, as the girls were wearing face masks that they couldn't see through, and were fumbling all over. Passersby were getting a real kick out of us. We've got some fun new ones up our sleeves. 

My favorite song is "Beginning of the End." What's yours and why?

- (john) - That's tough. At the moment, it's Eleven from the new album. Though I really really love a lot of that album in general. I love almost all of Dragons passionately, specifically Countdown and Acting Like We Don't. I like all of these because they really, really get my heart across and spoke to where we were at at the time. They also seem to really connect with people when we do them acoustic. 

- (chasah) - Daydreamer. I love the beat. "Take it Outside" also, because it's really fast and I love the lyrics. (I think it's really about her) 

- (addy) - "Once Again With Feeling" because of what it's about, and "Made to Fly" because it reminds me of my childhood. (see the video to understand) I also really love "Eleven." 

- (allie) - "Once Again With Feeling" because I like what it means and I like the sound of it. 

- (story) - I like "We're Not Going Crazy." 

- (saoirse) - she loves it all, as long as it's us. (or the pop-ups) 

- (yvonne) - I love "Weirdos on Parade." But, I love ALL of the new songs. I love the way that I feel when we sing them. 

- (john) - I gotta say, I agree. The new songs resound with us more than most anything. They are so much fun to dance to and sing to. We seem to be able to connect with these ones much more deeply. 

Beginning of The End Video

What are your plans for 2017?

Well, next week we're playing at a convention in Nashville. In April we'll be busking at the Knoxville Earth Fest. It was cool, we got *hired* to come busk. Yes please! 

We're working on some more shows for the summer and such. Got a few things up our sleeves. But honestly, we sort of just restarted our lives. The girls are in public school for the first time in their lives. So, we're taking our time to enjoy our new life.

We ARE however, gonna be heading up northeast in July for a certain concert that I'm so, so, so excited about BUT CANNOT TELL YOU ALL ABOUT YET. But, it'll be killer. And, if we're lucky, we'll be able to squeeze in some other fun shows as well around NY, DC, MA and more. 

Otherwise, we're going to enjoy Knoxville in the summer. It's gorgeous out here. 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Wake Up! Video

Yosi & the Superdads release a 3-song medley just in time for school!
Having 15 kids between the four of us dads we know a thing or two about trying to get the kids up for school. Sure, the first week or two they are excited, but soon they are not so chipper in the morning. So, it's our (& your) job as parents to get these munchkins fed, dressed, brushed, kissed & sent out the door. Of course, on weekends when YOU want to sleep in the kids get their revenge!
To hear samples &/or download of the three-song morning trilogy:
1) Wake Up,
2) Vitamin A-K, 
3) Bus Stop
Oh, and enjoy the first song & video: Wake Up! Turn it up LOUD!!! the morning.

Have a great day!!
Yosi & the Superdads

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Joanie Leeds Rocks!

I met Joanie at Kindiefest this past weekend. We spoke briefly about music, kids & radio. The next day I popped in her latest disc I'm A Rock Star & was immediately energized by the opening guitar riff, followed by the very well crafted, hook-laden pop rock styling. Tunes like "Jump, Jump", "I Like Jazz" & the fully Spanish "En Espanol" showcase Joanie's engaging singing & songwriting. Kids are bound to feel like rock stars singing along whole-heartedly. So, I called Joanie & said, "this is great!"

1) How did you get to be a "rock star" & how does it feel?

I feel like every move I've made over the course of my life has been preparing me for "rock stardom". When I was born, my parents told me that the nurse said instead of crying like all the other babies, it sounded like I was singing in the nursery. That must have planted a seed in their brains because at the ripe old age of two, my parents gave me Suzuki piano lessons. I started singing lessons by middle school and learned how to play guitar in 10th grade and never looked back. Once I graduated college with my first "grown up" CD in hand, I realized playing the NYC clubs like The Bitter End and The Living Room wasn't quite doing it for me so I switched gears and started writing and playing for kids. I have to tell you, I have lived the life in the music clubs and I have never felt more like a rock star as I do when I'm singing for kids and their families. It's really the best feeling in the whole world and I'm so grateful to my amazing fans!

2) What are some of your musical influences (as a kid & adult)?

I grew up in Miami Florida listening to 105.9 Classic Rock station but mixed in with Broadway show tunes my palate was pretty eclectic. My favorite music was the music my dad liked: Dylan, Grateful Dead, Cream, Beatles and Rolling Stones. In high school and college along with my love of Phish and any other jam band, I was all about chick singers: Indigo Girls, Alanis Morissette, Joni Mitchell, Fiona Apple, Tori Amos and Ani DiFranco. These days I listen to more indie rock: New Pornographers, The Mountain Goats, Wilco, Felice Brothers, The National, The Weepies, The Decemberists and Regina Spektor. I worked at the music club The Bitter End for a few years after college and I found my influences playing there. I think as a young kid I just knew who the famous people were and I didn't realize that many of the very best musicians are unsigned, unknown and playing to audiences of 20. I learned that lesson really fast and these independent artists changed my entire thinking. Dan Zanes is my biggest musical influence in the kids world. I started out playing folk music so his style really resonates with me. I got a chance to meet him at Kindiefest this past weekend and told him how much his music means to me! I'm sure I wasn't the only one.

3) Tell us about your love of sunglasses? What's that all about?

I'm from Miami so having beach access is as normal as having yellow cabs whiz by in my new home, NYC. Some of the best memories I have as a kid was riding my bike past the mangroves on our way to Matheson Hammocks Park. We used to picnic there, sit by the sand and go swimming. I just love wearing sunglasses, it reminds me of home. I wrote "Sunglasses" in Central Park while sitting with my friend Jess and Briana. I brought my guitar and said to them, I am going to have written a song about sunglasses within the hour. It took me about 30 minutes and then I played it for most of Sheeps Meadow.

4) My kid wants to know 'do you really have an Elf in your room?'

Ha ha. No I don't have an elf in my room though I wish I did if it meant I'd have someone help clean up my messes. This song came from a true story going way back to when my little brother Jonathan was really little. He had an imaginary friend, "The Elf", whom he would blame EVERYTHING on. If something was messy, "The Elf did it". If something was broken, "The Elf did it" I'm 6 years older than him so I wouldn't let anything slide back then but we went with this one because I found it fascinating. Also, when he blamed things on the elf, at least my mom knew I didn't do anything wrong. The elf was genius! I even went so far as to make a stuffed elf toy (looking very much like the lucky charms character) out of paper and cotton balls which I kept in his room for full effect. Luckily a few years later he learned about accountability, now he is in law school!

5) Finally! Someone understands the need for more cowbell. Do kids really like cowbells?

This SNL skit had me on the floor a few years back but when the iPhone application came out, that's I got the idea to write "More Cowbell" the song. People go crazy over cowbells and I think I understand why. It's a pretty loud bell that you hit with a stick, plus cows more often than not get to use them exclusively. I love playing guitar and piano but I secretly want to be a drummer so this song gives me a chance to rock the bell!

6) Your first album is more intimate & this one is more rockin'. Is this a new direction?

My songs from 'City Kid' were written for the kids I play music with at nursery school in a solo setting. I wanted to write mostly "doing" songs so the kids would have easy direction in class along with having fun, of course. I find when playing solo giving the kids something to do works better than singing a story song. After playing more with my band, it was clear that with a drummer involved, I had more options because kids can just dance. For 'I'm A Rock Star', I aimed to write story songs in every possible genre for my audience that was now a few years older. I co-produced with an awesome team from Nashville, Zodlounge Music, and together we came out with an incredible CD. I really love it.

7) What's next on the drawing board?

In the September of 2009 while recording with Zodlounge in Nashville, I was selecting the songs for 'I'm A Rock Star' from my list. I had 24 originals ready to go but this time wanted to go with a shorter CD, better for kids attention spans. I put 13 songs on 'I'm A Rock Star' and the rest will be on the next CD set to release in early spring, 2011. We already recorded most of the basic tracks in the summer of 2009 and I am heading into the studio next week to start recording my vocals. It's a CD (untitled) all about animals. The story behind this animal themed CD is I was asked to write a bunch of songs for a DVD project in focusing on endangered animals in early 2009. Because of that, my repertoire is very "animal heavy". This came in handy when I played two concerts at The Bronx Zoo last month! The CD will have 10 originals and 4 cover songs and a re-mixed previously released song from 'City Kid'. You'll find some folk, rock and blues on this one, I'm psyched! There is a cool
video on YouTube of my recording experience from these two albums where you can get a sneak peak of some new songs!

Keep on rockin', Joanie!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

A Kindie Christmas: Interview with Tito of The Hipwaders

The Hipwaders rock this holiday season with tasty power pop rock for the whole family on A Kindie Christmas. At my house we love the toe-tappin' rhythms & grooves of "Wake Up" & "It's Wintertime."

Frontman, Tito Uquillas, shared some thoughts about this great holiday album:

1) What got you started in this kindie biz?

I think like you a lot of children’s music performers, I was already a songwriter who had performed music for a long time and began writing songs to entertain my own children when they were born. I never considered what I was writing for them was children’s music but my own style of music with lyrics I thought they’d most appreciated when they reached grade school age. Actually, the first song I wrote for my kids was a song called, “So, You’re a Boy” for my unborn son, Aidan. During her pregnancy my wife was convinced she was going to have a girl and very soon had been convinced and mentally prepared on how I’d act as a father to a girl. When she had her 22 week sonogram we were told it was to be a boy and the song immediately came to me. We have yet to record it as a band – although there is a live version of it on YouTube – but hope to have it on our next release.

2) What spirit were you trying to capture in A Kindie Christmas?

I was trying to capture the spirit I feel for the Christmas season. I grew up in a house with adults that enjoyed the religious and secular aspects of the season. I always enjoyed the ‘tinsel & lights” and the memories of those times are always good ones. There are some things that always stick in my mind like how during our teenage years my father attempted to find the perfect gift for my hard-core punk rock-loving younger brother and got him a Ted Nugent album because it looked like a punk rock record. My brother, who usually knocked heads with my Dad, recognized the attempt my father made and with all sincerity thanked him and didn’t make any kind of issue of it. That in a nutshell is Christmas for me.

3) I love your pop sensibility & I’m hearing influences like REM, XTC, & even Johnny Cash. Are these some of your early influences?

Ah, you nailed it. What kid doesn’t like Johnny Cash? They say your teenage years and early 20’s is the time that your taste in music is forever shaped and for me that’s ’78 – ’83. Give me all that punk rock/new wave/ska/rockabilly music from that era and I’m happy. Earlier than that I was a huge Beatles/British Invasion and ‘60’s American Garage Rock fan.

4) What do The Hipwaders do when not playing music?

I’m a paramedic and try and balance work, music and raising two boys with my wife of 23 years. Nick (drums) is a High School art teacher and DJ (bass) is a mystery man. We know very little about him and Nick and I feel if we pry too much our livelihood, citizen status, and perhaps even our lives may be in jeopardy.

5) I love the groove on “It’s Wintertime.” Was that born of a jam session?

The main verse music was forged during a jam session & I just tried to keep the James Brown feeling it had. At first I was trying to sing a melody over it like James Brown but realized I sounded silly and came up with the legato vocal lines that seemed more natural to my “white boy” style. It’s hecka fun song to play!

6) What’s next on your drawing board?

We just did some performances at Children’s hospitals in San Francisco and I would really want to pursue some more shows like that. On a personal level it was wonderful as a children’s musician but more so on a paramedic level. I’ve been a paramedic for over 25 years and performing for sick children reminded me of why I became a paramedic and to be less of a clinician and more of a caregiver.
Looks like we may have a song included on a very high-profile compilation coming out next spring so we want to take advantage of that by performing as much as we can and get ready to be a available for any gigs that may come our way. We also want to save up our money to get back into the studio and try and make the perfect Hipwaders album!

Thanks, Tito!
Happy holidays!

Enjoy The Hipwaders:

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Happy Father's Day!!

We have a new CD!
Plus a concert on Sirius/XM 116 all weekend long!
PLUS: this Father's Day article is running in several on-line publications.

Hey Daddy-o!
By: Yosi Levin

“Hey there, kiddo! Enjoying your day? How about a bike ride? Let’s go!” Dads are great! From teaching you how to ride that bike, kissing your boo-boo, helping with homework, to taking the family out for ice cream, they are sweet & so much fun! Sure, they have work to do, bills to pay & things to fix. Dads come in all shapes, size, temperaments & attitudes.
They are special guys, but what makes a Dad so special? As the leader of a band of Dads, Yosi & The Superdads, I realize we have lots of differences but even more in common. Some of us have more hair on our heads than others. We have different size families, houses, cars, pets, & outlooks. But at the heart of being a Dad are some super qualities. It took several months to tease out those super qualities, but they are so simple we wonder why it took so long.

So here they are:

1) Patience: Now we’re not patient ALL the time! Let’s face it, who is? Sometimes it’s downright hard to be patient & we know it. But a great super-virtue of a Dad is the ability to assess a situation calmly, think about it and decide on a course of action. Did your Dad teach you how to tie shoelaces, throw a ball, or ride a two-wheeler? You know what I mean. It takes time & a lot of biting of one’s tongue to teach & be a part of a kid’s life…but we love it!

2) Care: You’ve heard it …”good night”, “good Morning”, “great job”, “watch out”, “hey silly goose”, “I’m gonna catch you”, and more…plus you’ve seen his silly faces, smiles & crazy looks …all spell I L-O-V-E Y-O-U …every time.

3) Humor: Now Dads tend to be natural goofballs. It’s like they were built to be human whoopee cushions. Whether they’re laughing loudly at a funny movie or TV show, cracking jokes, tickling, or making bathroom or silly noises you gotta admit they LOVE to crack you up.

4) Perseverance: No, not sweating! You know, hanging in there & doing the right thing. (OK, maybe there’s some sweating involved.) This is the glue for any family. Someone’s got to take care of daily, weekly, monthly, seasonal & yearly tasks. But more importantly, there needs to be a vision of the future & working towards it. Moms have their way of doing it wonderfully, & Dads have theirs. Sometimes it may not look like much more than work, or chores, or even reading the mail …but there’s a bigger picture in that man’s head. Ask him. You might be surprised.

And so my good friends it’s nearly Father’s Day. You could buy that tacky tie, or an iPod for your special Daddy. But what any Dad really wants is what we all want; some appreciation. I don’t need a big gift to feel appreciated. For me a hand drawn card from my kids makes all the difference.
However, if you REALY REALLY want to make a Dad super-happy I’m going to let you in on a little secret. You ready? Shhhhh! Secretly, Dads want to feel like they are cool again. There was a time when they were younger & rode a motorcycle or went to rock concerts wearing a leather jacket. They’re not sure if they are cool anymore & you CAN’T TALK TO THEM about it. They’ll just deny it. So, if you REALLY want to make a Dad feel super special all you have to do is say “Hey, Daddy-o! You’re the coolest!”

Award-winning children’s recording artist & performer, Yosi Levin, is a father of four children, ages: 7, 12, 12, & 15. Yes, that’s twins in the middle! He with his wife & kids live in the sleepy seashore town of Island Heights, NJ where they plant butterfly gardens, rear moths, play various musical instruments & go on bike rides. Oh, somewhere in between bills get paid.

PS- You can hear Yosi & The Superdads recorded concert on Sirius/XM Channel 116 all Father’s Day weekend (June 19 -21).

Monday, June 01, 2009

Billy Kelly's Happy Club

Billy Kelly is the newest kid rocker on the block, & his first disc is a blockbuster! Clever, fun, great pop melodies, hooks & humor. This CD is on my Top 10 for 2009. Check it out! You'll be happy you did.

1) How did I suddenly become an OFFICIAL member of The Happy Club? and are there any annual fees?

All you gotta do is SMILE and youre an OFFICIAL member of The Happy Club! It's that simple. They say smiling only uses one muscle (the mouth muscle, located in the mouth) but frowning uses over 18 million muscles, many of which are located in the feet & leg area. So you can see that smiling much better than frowning when it comes to things to do with your face.

Joining The Happy Club is free. Staying in The Happy Club is FREE. The only thing you're required to do as an official member of The Happy Club is spread cheer & love around. Smile at people, give your friends hugs, pet your dog and stuff like that.

2) If the first song is called This is the First Song why isnt the last song called This is the Last Song?

Mainly because the word Last could mean PREVIOUS, and there would be no way to truthfully play a song called This Is The Previous Song, because you could never play the previous song while playing the song youre currently playing. Also because I didnt think of it in time.

3) I see the Talking Heads had an influence are there other influences?

Gravity is a big influence on me. It really keeps me grounded. I like Talking Heads interesting/absurd way of looking at the world, but musically The Monkees were the biggest inspiration for this me while recording this CD. I love their harmony vocals especially, but I also like the way they jump around from one musical style to another. I also just like the way they jump around period. I like the way actual monkeys jump around too. Thats awesome.

4) Why do People Really Like Milk?

That's a great question, and one I never bothered to ask myself, so I dont have the answer. It can't be because it comes from a cow because there are other things that come from cows that people really don't seem to care for. It can't be simply because milk tastes good, because milk tastes GREAT. All I know for sure is that people really DO like milk. Open everyones refrigerator if you dont believe me they all have milk in there.

5) My kids & I LOVE Digby on The Billy Kelly Show. How did he become your manager & what plans does he have?

One of my socks got a big hole in the heel and I threw it in the garbage. (You can't recycle socks.) As I turned to walk away, the sock started talking to me (the hole in the heel was apparently its' mouth) and asked me if I needed a manager. I told him what I really needed was a new sock, but Digby ODoole wont take no for an answer. Our conversation continued for about 2 hours and in the end I let him manage my music carrer. Now he does stuff for me like sending my CD to radio stations, booking concerts, and setting up interviews with cool kids-music blogs. I only wear yellow socks, by the way.

6) Did The Blah Blah Blahs used to be The Yeah Yeah Yeahs?

No No No.

7) Why is Springtime your favorite?

I've always loved Springtime the best. Its not too hot, and its not too cold. Sometimes you get a little snow in the Springtime, but not TOO much snow like in Winter. Plus lots of trees and flowers change color in Springtime, just like in Autum, but unlike Autum, they don't all drop their leaves onto the ground and die then. In Springtime everything changes color and STAYS ALIVE! Springitme is the best!!!

8) Where can folks catch your show?

Episode 1 of The Billy Kelly Show is currently posted on my youtube channel: Its split into two parts because its over 10 minutes long, and youtube apparently thinks all videos should be less than 10 minutes long. Im looking for a home for it on a more kid-friendly video site. Eventually itll be on my site,, but thats still under construction. Digby says the web site will be done in 2014.
Thanks Billy (& Digby, for making this interview possible). Hope to be seeing more of both of you. -Yosi

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Flow dreamily with Sunflow

Feelin' kinda mellow?

SUNFLOW is the brainchild of two transatlantic songwriters Nancy Falkow (USA) and Fran King (IRELAND). Upon a chance meeting at a train station in Dublin, Ireland, Falkow and King became fast friends.

The following is an interview with Nancy:

1) How did Sunflow form?
OK in a nutshell....I moved to Ireland from Philadelphia in 2004 and in
2005 I randomly met Fran King at a train station (I recognized him from seeing him on TV). I later joined his band playing some keys and singing.
One day he played me a beautiful song he wrote, "Eve's Lullabye - (My Little One)" and I thought, why haven't I written anything like that for my kid? So I wrote 5 tunes and we worked on some more together and decided we'd make a record. We enlisted his mate and producer extraordinaire Duncan Maitland (who's also a Sunflow bandmember). And Sunflow was born.

2) What inspired you to create "Under the Stars"?

3) Do you perform these songs live?
We've done a few band shows and some radio. Schedules permitting, more to come.

4) How do kids respond to your sound? (If they fall asleep does that
mean the concert is a success?)
That's the thing, as a band we're new, so we haven't performed for kids yet, we've mostly played shows for adults, you know, at night-- and only a few people fell asleep. But I would say sleep is a success!

5) I hear Paul McCartney & XTC in your songs. What are your influences?
My influences hover in the B section of the alphabet - Beatles, Bowie, Beck, Beach Boys, Bob Dylan and I love Ween, Daniel Lanois, Stevie Wonder, Aimee Mann, Joni Mitchell, Patty Griffin and so many more!

6) What's next on your drawing board?
Well, I'd like to get the word out about this record. The children's world is new to me, I've been a singer-songwriter a while, but promoting a record that's meant for kids is a whole different animal!

And speaking of drawing board - I've been drawing images and creating videos for some of the songs from "Under the Stars" and putting them up on YouTube(inspired by the artist Roseann Endres from Eric Herman's videos).

Here's a few links:
I Wish You Love -
Dreamboat -

Band Links -
Download or buy cd here:

We are: