I hope you've taken the opportunity to watch a lot of great videos and vote for your favorites at a lot of great kids music sites over the past couple weeks -- now the four videos which won their regionals will compete here at Zooglobble to finish determining the KidVid Tournament 2011 champion. The first semi-final matchup features Keller Williams, who won the Pete Seeger Region with his video for "Hula Hoop to Da Loop," going up against Debbie and Friends, the winner of the Woody Guthrie Region with "Cinderella." Two very different videos, indeed, so even if you came here intending to vote for one or the other, I hope you'll take 3 or 4 minutes and check out the competition's song and video. Polls close at 9 PM West Coast time tonight (Thursday). As always, one vote per household, and play nice. Debbie and Friends - "Cinderella" [YouTube] Keller Williams - "Hula Hoop to Da Loop" [YouTube]
It's the second day of second round voting for KidVid Tournament 2011 (there's something synchronistic in that, right?) features the Woody Guthrie Regional. It's the matchup between the Bazillions' "Preposition" (a #1 seed) vs. Debbie and Friends and the #2 seed "Cinderella." Vote over at Gooney Bird Kids today and today only. Vote here.
It started with my favorite kids music videos of the year. Then you voted on your favorites at Saturday Morning Cereal Bowl. Then you went to Out With the Kids, Ages 3 and Up!, Gooney Bird Kids, and Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child to vote in Round 1. Maybe you even went to Dadnabbit (or should've, anyway) to read Jeff's handicapping of the brackets. All that, and we still have seven matchups to go. Here, then, are the Round 1 winners who will be facing off in Round 2. Ella Jenkins Region: The Not-Its!, "Green Light, Go!" (2) vs. Sugar Free Allstars, "Cars and Trucks" (4) Pete Seeger Region: Keller Williams, "Hula Hoop To Da Loop" (1) vs. Recess Monkey, "Black Hole in My Room" (2) Leadbelly Region: Caspar Babypants, "$9.99" (1) vs. Key Wilde & Mr. Clarke, "Big Pet Pig" (2) Woody Guthrie Region: The Bazillions, "Preposition" (1) vs. Debbie and Friends, "Cinderella" (2) Some of the winners won in blowouts, some in squeakers, but all of these (friendly) face-offs will get even closer here in this next round. Even though I like the Sugar Free Allstars video (it made my Top 25 list, after all), it makes me a little sad that John and Mark's "A Counting Error," my favorite video of the year, didn't make it to round 2, but that's the perils of fandom, right? Round 2 will start on Saturday, March 26. Which matchup will kick off Round 2 and where will it be found? Well, you'll just have to wait for Saturday to find out...
Yes, that's right. Head on over today to Out With the Kids for your chance to vote on the first two matchups in KidVid Tournament 2011, featuring the Woody Guthrie Region: -- The Bazillions, "Preposition" (1) vs. Coal Train Railroad (and Readeez), "Just the Juice, Jack" (4) -- watch and vote here. -- Debbie and Friends, "Cinderella" (2) vs. Billy Kelly, "The Sky Floats (and So Do Boats)" (3) -- watch and vote here. And, if you want a second opinion on the videos, Jeff Giles, the fine writer and mastermind behind Dadnabbit, has graciously agreed to provide his thoughts on the whole bracket. Read his take on the day's competition here.
When I heard about the "twist" Debbie Cavalier (AKA Debbie and Friends was considering for the video for her new song, "Cinderella," I thought it might end up being cheesy. But now that I've seen the final product, bada boom, bada bing, I think it turned out pretty funny and ends up elevating the rest of the video just enough to not drive away the parents. The song is an uptempo, 5-minute retelling of the myth with touches of Death Cab for Cutie. Debbie and Friends - "Cinderella" [YouTube] More D&F videos after the jump.
I think the first time I became aware of the Topspin media widget was a couple years ago when David Bryne and Brian Eno promoted their new album Everything That Happens Will Happen Today using it. As someone who writes a website, the content-filled nature of the widget appealed to me, but it appealed to me as a fan as well. Sure, from a listener perspective, it's just a way to give an e-mail address to get an mp3, but it did it in such an elegant and well-designed way that it typically was the only type of widget that I'd actually respond to. In time I realized that kids musicians were starting to use the widget, too. At this point enough of them are using the platform that I thought it'd be worth asking the users what they thought of it and its good (and bad) points. Among the artists who responded were Debbie Cavalier, Jeremy Toback, and Kevin Salem from Little Monster Records, along with one of his artists, Key Wilde. I also talked some with Mike King from Berkleemusic -- if you need an overview of Topspin, you could do far worse than checking out the videos King made with Topspin CEO Ian Rogers. What made you interested in working with Topspin? Most artists came to Topspin via some personal connection -- Debbie Cavalier first heard about Topspin nearly two years ago when, as the Dean of Continuing Education at Berklee, they started to plan the development of the “Marketing Music with Topsin” course. Jeremy Tobck knew Topspin cofounder Shamal Ranasinghe when he was developing the idea for Topspin, and was "super intrigued" by his idea of deepening the direct relationship between artists and fans. Toback says that Ranasinghe, dug Renee & Jeremy, wanted then to be beta users, and "helped convince us that we had built enough on our own to benefit" from the platform. As for Kevin Salem, he says that Robert Schneider’s manager told him about it, though he "was slow to respond." (Robert Schneider is another Topspin artist, both for the Apples in Stereo as well as his Little Monster Robbert Bobbert project.) But the Topspin representative was an "old acquaintance" from Salem's time as a solo artist after giving him a quick tutorial, Salem thought it could "help plug the considerable holes in [his] physical distribution network." He also says he thought it could help create "unique products" for the fans and "shift the ratio of physical-to-digital sales in our genre." [I'd note that at Kindiefest, Salem noted that the next Little Monster release, a compilation, will be entirely digitally distributed.]