Lucky Diaz' first album, an EP titled Luckiest Adventure, was a 15-minute blast of folk-pop goodness that immediately caught the ear of all who heard it. As a result, expectations and anticipation for his first full-length disk was high. Today Diaz and his Family Jam Band release Oh Lucky Day and so you're probably wondering, does it fulfill the promise of those first five songs? The answer: for the most part, yes. The new album doesn't tremendously expand Diaz' sound or introduce new styles, but that's OK because his well-produced folk-tinged pop and pop-rock didn't need much expanding to begin with. Diaz clearly thinks the world of his daughter, and many of the songs seem written with her in mind. I love the opening track, the goofy "Say What?," which features some funky scat-and-response between Diaz and his daughter. I am less enamored of "Pretty Princess," a song about, well, being a princess. I guess I just don't need more songs about princesses. A large part of the album borders on the edge of sticky-sweet, and if you are looking for an album with a little more "grit," you may stop listening before you get to the latter part of the album, which is my favorite part. "Race Car" is a, er, revved-up song perfect for car-obsessed preschoolers, while "Gato Astronauto" takes a cat on a New Wave-inspired trip. Following that, "Let's Dance" is for all of you that thought "Video Killed the Radio Star" needed to be turned into a preschool rave-up. (Raises hand.) After all that silliness, the sweet ending track, "Dreamland," a duet with Holly Conlan, puts a pretty little bow on the package. The album is most appropriate for kids ages 3 through 7. You can hear one song here and samples here. With Oh Lucky Day, Lucky Diaz has crafted an album of well-written songs and fine arrangements that will satisfy a large percentage of all but the most rambunctious of kid-listeners. It is Diaz' first full-length, but clearly won't be his last. Recommended. I received a copy of the album for possible review. I also ran a contest to win the album.
It's been awhile since I've run a contest 'round here, but I think you'll agree that this contest is worth the wait. Today's contest is from Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band, who release their anticipated debut full-length album Oh Lucky Day! on May 10. And they're offering you, or at least one of you, a chance to win the full-length. But, wait, there's more. They're hitting NYC this weekend to play some shows and gab with some folks at Kindiefest, and they're offering you, or at least one of you (along with a guest), a chance to hear and see them live in concert on Sunday, May 1 at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn. (Doors at noon, show at 12:30.) But, wait, there's more.
I know, maybe I should wait for KidVid Tournament 2011 to end before featuring new videos. And, yeah, this video from Lucky Diaz -- his first -- is actually from his first EP, not the full-length debut Oh Lucky Day! that'll be out on May 10. But, really, watch the wonderful video for Diaz's awesome tune "Blue Bear" and tell me that it isn't worth the interruption. The animation is by Brian White and I'm kinda thinking it's a solid candidate for KidVid Tournament 2012 -- never too early to start checking out the competition. So enjoy this World Premiere video from Lucky and the gang. Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band - "Blue Bear" [YouTube]
It's now officially spring, so we can now officially be happy about the sun. Lucky Diaz has just the song for these bright new mornings. It's called "Here Comes the Sun," and, no, it's not the Beatles, but it's catchy in its own right. It's from the LA pop-ster's first full-length album, Oh Lucky Day!, set to be released May 10th. Listen to the song here. For the price of an e-mail, you can download the track for free.
I was a little worried that the gorgeous weekend weather here in Phoenix would dampen attendance at the shows at the Children's Museum of Phoenix, but I needn't have worried. Turns out both shows from Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band were pretty packed. Diaz and his bandmate/fiancee Alisha Gaddis (their drummer didn't make it for this gig) made for a nice compare-and-contrast duo -- Diaz laid back, Gaddis energetic. (Indeed, she was the one who led most of the preschool crowd interactive stuff.) I was probably the only person in the audience who knew that the duo was giving us a treat -- some songs from their sweet EP of last year mixed in with new songs from their upcoming album. I've got a couple of new tracks here along with an oldie-but-goodie. And, even though we were inside, if ever a room was sun-dappled, it was this one... Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band - "Quite Like You" [YouTube] More videos (and pictures) after the jump...
Here are a few nuggets to put in your virtual Advent calendar as you await Christmas. (There's even a Hanukkah ditty for those of you celebrating this week.) And I'm gonna update this post as more stuff floats in like a happy little snowflake. Renee and Jeremy have offered up their sweet take on "Little Drummer Boy" on iTunes (you can download it here). No drums, but it's pretty much a perfect fit for R&J's hypnotic approach. And check out the awesome album art there. There needs to be a Christmas card, pronto. Lucky Diaz increases his recorded family music output by releasing "Under the Tree," a slightly wistful but very tuneful track. Download it here; proceeds benefit the Pablove Foundation, which provides support to kids with cancer.