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MUSIC: A Musical Menagerie

What A Zoo! by Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights is an entertaining musical romp thru the animal kingdom. These songs are perfect for kids interested in animals and will educate them at the same time, as the songs are full of facts about the various animals and their behaviors, especially songs such as “Big Blue Whale”, “My Butterfly” and ” Sea Cow”. But what is most unique is the ability of Joanie Leeds to utilize such a diverse collection of musical styles for these songs, from the jazzy cover of “Froggy Went A Courting” to the indie rock styled tunes such as “Big Blue Whale” to the roadhouse blues of “Possum” to the bluegrass of “Hummingbird” to the country western style of “Pony Boy” to the sing-a-long world music of “Wimoweh”. Such a variety of styles keeps the album from becoming stale as they seem to switch from song to song so that each animal or group of them gets its own sound, and no two songs really sound the same, which is always a danger when an album is themed such as this one is. One of the highlights is the song “Happy As A Clam” which might be a world-record holder for stringing together animal related sayings and cliches. There is even a song called “Tofurky” for the vegetarians in training. Overall, What A Zoo! is an album with great sing-a-long possibilities and has songs which will make the kids want to get up and move about & around.

 

What A Zoo! by Joanie Leeds and the Nightlights

 Releases April 12, 2011

A CD was provided for review.