What does childhood sound like? The duo behind Play Date think they've cracked the code. Of course, being a child, living like a child, and thinking like a child are vastly different animals. But Play Date believe they've tamed all said beasts, with the lyrical tale of "Stevie the Fox" kicking off their second CD, WE ALL SHINE.
Mike Park's Fun Fun Records has cultivated a treasure trove of performers, including Kepi Ghoulie to Koo Koo Kangaroo. But Play Date remains the most accessible, boisterous, and engaging act on its roster. The title track and chorus simply state the message that Greg Attonito and Shanti Wintergate seek to convey:
We are all a part of a great humanity
Working all together to make life for you and me
Planet Earth is our home in this great big galaxy
We all shine, we all shine, like the stars
What act other than Play Date is going to intersperse public service announcements for broccoli, bananas, carrots, and apples in the middle of their CD? Rapper P.O.S. shows up to funk out on "Ninja Pajamas" and hail the power of imagination (also the title of the band's first CD).
Former punker Attonito has pivoted from punk to youth music. His band The Bouncing Souls hail from New Brunswick, New Jersey, a stone's throw from my childhood nabe in Somerset. His partner in merriment, Shanti Wintergate has a lengthy performance career that includes three separate runs on the Vans Warped Tours (2004, 2006, and 2008). Together, they have delivered 40-plus minutes of gentle "get up, here we go" guitar-based rock for the smaller set.
WE ALL SHINE is available on July 24 from the band's website, Fun Fun Records, iTunes, and Amazon.
Alastair Moock has gotten over cancer. Well, his daughter is in remission and he has moved to greener (and happier) pastures with his upcoming CD, ALL KINDS OF YOU AND ME. It's a tribute of sorts to the epic and much-loved landmark 1972 album FREE TO BE...YOU AND ME. “Free To Be was a huge album for me and so many other kids of the 70s," Moock says. "Forty years later, it felt like the right time both to pay tribute to that amazing project and to try to push beyond some of the limitations of its era.”
For a special video preview of what's to come, visit his YouTube channel. And here's a look at "It Takes All Kinds," the first song from the album, coming June 19.