Monday, August 21, 2017

Back to School With the Bazillions

Let me educate you! Or rather, let me entertain you, and in the process you might be educated. That's the hallmark (akin to the hall monitor) of the Bazillions. The Minneapolis-based family band (headed by married teachers Adam and Kristin Marshall) have released their fourth CD, ROCK-N-ROLL YEARBOOK and it's a years' worth of family curriculum in 12 songs (and 35 minutes).

In the past (shall I refer to the CDs as lower grades), the Bazillions have devoted songs of punctuation, science, and math. They "bring the brainpower" with tracks such as "Wide Open World of Adjectives" and
"Queen Ellen of the Spelling Bee," which teaches proper grammar in the context of a character profile:

I before the e
Not after c
She tells me that's a rule
Drop the silent e
When adding i-n-g
That's another yeah yeah yeah

But the group also deals with more kid-centric topics such as choosing ones' own clothing ("That's My Style"), the end of the school year ("Summer's Here," closing the CD with a final bell and cheers), and friends moving away ("Keep Your Identity Safe"). What I first thought was an eye-rolling "stranger danger" message turned out to be a moving, fist-bumping "saying goodbye" song, as Adam Marshall implores his friend that "you're gonna turn around your new hometown and I'll keep your identity safe when you move away."

The Bazillions know the kids they're targeting will grow up and away from their music. However they want the information to penetrate those developing noggins. And the best way to do that is with music that sticks in the cranium like a pervasive earworm. Um, of the best kind. And I mean that in the best possible way. Give your child a sandwich and they'll ask you to cut off the crusts. Give your child ROCK-N-ROLL YEARBOOK and maybe they'll ask for guitar lessons. Live and learn, right?

ROCK-N-ROLL YEARBOOK is available August 25 from the Bazillions' website, Amazon, iTunes, and CDBABY.

Here is the video for their new song, "Back at School." Full disclosure - my kid made the cut:

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