Win a Jelly of the Month Club CD or House of Blues Anaheim Concert Tickets

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Well, after setting up a giveaway for a contemplative modern-folk Christmas CD and concert tickets in New York City, I guess the (relative) West Coasterner in me couldn't resist offering a sunny West Coast alternative (no California residence required).

It's for the fun debut album from the Southern California all-star band Jelly of the Month Club and their Sunday, January 19 family-friendly concert at the House of Blues in Anaheim.  The debut Introducing Jelly of the Month Club is a bunch of danceable fun, and I think their energetic ska-punk sound will translate well to a live setting.

So, by Friday, December 6 at 8 pm West Coast time, enter to win either the CD or the concert tickets by leaving a comment below (one per family, please) about your favorite Southern California memory (either real or just via book, music, or movies).  I'll pick two winners the randomly -- the first winner will get the choice of the CD or the tickets, and the second winner will get what the first didn't select.  Please remember to leave your e-mail address (shown only to me) so I can e-mail you if you're a winner.

Thanks for reading and entering, thanks to the House of Blues Anaheim for the CD and the tickets, and good luck!

Win A Copy of Elizabeth Mitchell's The Sounding Joy (Plus Free Concert Tickets)

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I've already reviewed the fabulous album of Christmas music from Elizabeth Mitchell, The Sounding Joy, and now it's your chance to win a copy of your very own.  (And now, also to win 4 tickets to see Mitchell and many of her friends from the album in New York City -- see below.)

That's right, courtesy of Smithsonian Folkways, I have a copy of the album inspired by Ruth Crawford Seeger's 1953 songbook American Folk Songs for Christmas looking for a good home for the holidays.  Might it be yours?

The album features guest stars aplenty, including Natalie Merchant, Dan Zanes, John Sebastian, Aoife O'Donovan, and Ruth Crawford Seeger's daughter Peggy Seeger.  Most importantly it features Mitchell's peaceful voice and stellar arrangements from Mitchell and husband Daniel Littleton.

Mitchell will be playing a couple holiday gigs this year (with Merchant and many others), at New York City's Symphony Space on December 14 and Levon Helm Studios in Woodstock on December 20.  If you can't be there, then this album might be the next best thing.  (See below for details on winning a 4-pack of tickets to the Symphony Space show.)

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To enter, leave a comment below with your favorite wintertime holiday song, regardless of whether that's "Joy to the World," "The Dreidel Song," The Waitresses' "Christmas Wrapping," or "The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don't Be Late)."  You'll need to leave your e-mail address (so I can contact you if I win), but it won't be displayed, and you'll also need to be patient because I have to approve every comment before it's posted.  Deadline for submitting a comment is 10 PM Eastern time on Wednesday, Nov. 27.  I'll pick a winner randomly and promise to get it out to the winner in plenty of time to inspire their own December singalongs.

(The wonderful folks at Symphony Space -- really, I've met them, they *are* wonderful -- have also offered 4 tickets to the December 14 show with Mitchell and many others.  Everyone who enters for the CD will also enter for the concert.  The first name drawn will get to choose between the tickets and the CD, and then I'll pick a second winner who'll get to use whatever the first winner didn't select.)

Thanks and good luck!

Happy Birthday to Me!

OK, not me specifically -- this site.  That's right, in 2004, eight years ago today, I put my cyberstake down in the ground and said I was going to start writing about kids music.

And then I promptly went silent for another couple months.

But then I started posting all the reviews I'd written over the past 2-3 years, and eventually artists started e-mailing me out of the blue offering copies for possible review, then NPR called, yadda yadda yadda, and now kids music is a big deal (again).

I've had fun writing this site.  If I had to guess (now that the site is spread out over a number of different categories, it's more work to total), I'd guess that I've written maybe 2,800 posts and published more than a million words on kids music.  That's a lot of time to spend writing about anything; add to that the time spent listening to family music, and, well, there's a reason I'm not really up on the latest TV.

Anyway, writers and creators always say they write and create for themselves, and that's true, but most of them -- including me -- like to know that they have an audience reading or listening in.  So thanks for the time you've spent reading, and thanks, too, to the musicians and others who've spent time creating and asking me to give their art a try.

And it wouldn't be a birthday party without a small goody bag, so I'm running an instant contest -- enter your name below by 9 PM West Coast time tonight, August 27, 2012, and I'll randomly select one person to win a free CD (I have a wide array of good, new disks for your enjoyment).  If you want to say how you found this site, that'd be great, but not necessary.  Thanks for reading and playing!

Video: "Box of Crayons" - The Pop Ups

Radio Jungle album coverThe Pop Ups are primed to have a big April -- the follow-up to their stunning debut Outside Voices, Radio Jungle, is going to be released next Tuesday, April 3. In addition, the Kickstarter-funded follow-up to their live-action puppet extravaganza opens in Brooklyn on April 22. What else could they possibly do in April?

Well, nothing -- they're just too busy. Which explains why they're premiering their video for "Box of Crayons" today, at the end of March. On a disk with lots of radio-friendly hits, "Box of Crayons" -- '80s-inspired synths and soaring choruses with a touch of The Postal Service mixed up with a whole bunch of colors -- might just be the radio-friendliest (not to mention one of my favorites). It's matched up here with animation from Garrett Davis; Harold only had a single, purple crayon -- imagine how much more he could have done with a whole box.

Beyond that -- how would you like to win a copy of the new album? (Yes, yes you would.) Just comment below by 8 PM West Coast time Friday night (the 30th) with your favorite color, and I'll randomly pick a winner (one entry per person, please). Thanks, good luck, and enjoy...

The Pop Ups - "Box of Crayons" [YouTube]

 

Contest: Win Papa Crow's "Things That Roar" and More!

ThingsThatRoar.jpgI liked Papa Crow's 2011 debut Things That Roar quite a bit. So I'm pleased to be able to offer you (courtesy of Papa Crow himself, Jeff Krebs) a copy of that fine album, good at any time of year, and especially here in the hush of winter. But even if you've already got the album, there's another reason why you might be interested -- the winner of the contest will also get a handmade Papa Crow T-shirt (usually part hand-painted, part stenciled and part hand-stamped, and made by Krebs' wife) in a size of their choosing. So what do you need to do? Just enter a comment below or in the Facebook post announcing the contest with the animal who makes your favorite animal noise, roar or not. One entry per family, entries due by 11 PM East Coast time Thursday, Jan. 12. I'll pick one winner at random. And even if you don't win, if you're not familiar with Things That Roar, you can always sign up using the widget to the side to get three free downloads from the album for the price of an e-mail and zip code.

Contest: Win Dan Zanes Tickets (Scottsdale, May 14)

Dan Zanes - photo by Anna Williams_lowres.jpgDan Zanes and Friends are returning to Phoenix for the first time in more than 3 years. And you should definitely be there when he does. I can speak from personal experience the joy and community engendered by his concerts. And, if you live in Arizona, on this Saturday, May 14 at 3 pm, you can, too. He's playing the gorgeous Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts. Now, you can go here and buy tickets, if you haven't already. But the Center is offering you the chance to win tickets, too. That's right, one lucky local reader will get a family four-pack of tickets to Saturday's show. Of course, "family" in Zanes' world is a very inclusive word, so if you want to bring three of your college buddies, that's totally fine. (I've seen it happen.) Here are the simple rules -- just comment below (you'll need to register with my anti-spamming system in order to do so) and tell me one song you hope to hear Dan play in concert. Alternately, you can comment on the post for this contest on the Zooglobble Facebook page. One entry per person per location -- that means you can enter twice, once here and once on Facebook. All entries due by 9 PM Phoenix time this Wednesday (the 11th). I will randomly pick one winner and let them know how to get the tickets. Thanks and good luck! Photo by Anna Williams