The Perfect Quirk - Secret Agent 23 Skidoo

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Artist: Secret Agent 23 Skidoo

Album: The Perfect Quirk

Description: The undisputed king of kid-hop, Skidoo's latest album is a little mellower, a little less self-empowering than some of his other work.  In my review of the album, I noted that I liked it, just not quite as much as some of his other albums.  Still worth checking out, though.

Source: Bandcamp

Full Moon, Full Moon - Papa Crow

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Artist: Papa Crow

Album: Full Moon, Full Moon

Description: It's been three years (and an EP) later since Michigan's Jeff Krebs (aka Papa Crow) released his well-loved debut Things That Roar, but this week sees the release of the full-length follow-up.  Fans of the debut will hear a familiar gently playful folk sound, with some familiar artists like Frances England making an appearance.

Source: Bandcamp

How To Be a Cloud - Kira Willey

Artist: Kira Willey

Album: How To Be a Cloud

Description: The forthcoming third album from the Pennsylvania-based Willey follows the format of her first two albums -- light kindie pop that's dually purposed in the second half as the basis for yoga moves.  I've streamed the kindie pop tracks below, but you can go ahead and listen to the yoga tracks, too.

Source: Soundcloud

Back to School Playlist - Various Artists

Artist: Various Artists

Album: N/A

Description: Six songs from the roster of artists repped by Sugar Mountain PR, an excellent selection, including stuff from Justin Roberts, The Not Its, Bill Harley, Shine and the Moonbeams, Key Wilde and Mr. Clarke, and Brady Rymer.

Source: Soundcloud

Nursery Rhymes - The Kinkajous

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Artist: The Kinkajous

Album: Nursery Rhymes

Description: There are lots of albums that ply the formula a + b = c, where "a" = classic preschool songs, "b" = non-folk genre, and "c" = something that is lucky to hold the family's attention unless they're diehard fans of "b," but the Caribbean twist the English band The Kinkajous apply to classic nursery rhymes (natch) has much longer staying power than most such albums.  And from a United States perspective, the handful of unfamiliar tunes (e.g., "One Man Went to Mow") also helps keep it fresh.

Source: Bandcamp

"The Dot Song" - Emily Dale and Peter H. Reynolds

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Artist: Emily Dale

Song: "The Dot Song"

Album: N/A

Description: There is a good chance that you and/or your kids have read The Dot, a lovely little picture book from Peter H. Reynolds about creativity and in particular the importance of simply starting anywhere.  Now Los Angeles-based musician Dale has teamed up with Reynolds to pen this poppy song to accompany the book.  If you were charmed by the book, the song is a nice accompaniment.

Source: Bandcamp

Photo: Christine Eaves

If We Must We Must - The Good Ms. Padgett

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Artist: The Good Ms. Padgett

Album: If We Must We Must

Description: "Compared to the folksier and often hushed [sister-in-law Elizabeth] Mitchell, however, Padgett cranks up the volume, if not to 11, at least to 8 or 9 on a few tracks." (from the review)

Source: Bandcamp

3's a Charm - Mista Cookie Jar & the Chocolate Chips

Artist: Mista Cookie Jar and the Chocolate Chips

Album: 3's a Charm

Description: A brand new EP from SoCal's heartfelt master-mixer musical styles (one guess as to the number of tracks), 3's a Charm a somewhat mellower outing featuring 3 love songs to the youngsters in his family.

Source: Bandcamp