Artist: Jonathan Mann
Age Range: 5 through 10
Description: Jonathan Mann is best known for recording and releasing a song a day, every day, for more than 6 years. So when he came up with the idea of revisiting and rerecording some of his best songs, he clearly had a large batch to choose from. Animals is, as you'd surmise, a collection of animal-related tunes that, while not specifically a kids' album, is definitely kid-friendly. (Mann notes that while he was thinking of this as his "kids album," none of the songs were written as kids songs.)
The poppy and synth-assisted songs themselves are pretty silly -- "Penguins Having a Party" and "Kittens in Space" lead off the album, and they're about exactly what their titles suggest. The songs generally tend toward the fanciful (another song: "Steve, the Hippo with Multiple Personalities") and so while there's some factual information, that's not the purpose of these tracks. Because of their origins -- hey, you try writing a song a day every day -- some of the songs are pretty brief and feature a single idea. When it comes to kids' songs, though, that can be a feature, not a bug. ("Deer Licks the Cat" is a gloriously dorky singalong focused on a chorus basically consisting of the title... and it won't. leave. your. brain.)
You can stream and purchase the digital album here. It's a light album, catchy and happy. Slide some of these into your next playlist. Recommended.