Sing Song Sayings
Canadian musician/illustrator/author Mike Bryden’s debut album features ten original compositions, mostly about critters and always about life. Singing in a pleasant voice that is reminiscent of Art Garfunkel’s dusky soprano, he begins the festivities with the silly subtraction song “Don’t Count Your Chickens.” In a song set to a chunky little rhythm Bryden tells how “The Best Medicine” is laughter; “The Goose and the Gander,” a lovely party invitation, is sung in English and French, while “Petit Criquet (Little Cricket)” is an elegant, flute enhanced ballad sung entirely in French. “Birds of A Feather” is a banjo fueled litany of flying characters (“Oh I once knew a goose … She loves her French juice/To us it’s grapefruit, to her it’s pamplemouse …” while the Bo Diddley rhythmed “A Rolling Stone” is a Cajun flavored song about the importance of exercise. “Fish Out of Water” is a nice tune about being all you can be, and the album ends with “Needle In A Haystack,” a bright little ditty about finding lost things.
Bryden sings, plays guitar, ukulele, and harmonica and gets support from banjo player Patrick Bartel, accordion and organ player Simon Kendall and Marc L’Esperance on vocals, percussion and keys. The children’s vocals on the album are provided by the Vancouver’s Zing Choir and The Musical Minds Choir. All in all, a fine debut.
Lahri Bond ©2019 Parents’ Choice
Lahri Bond is a father, a writer, music historian and an art professor in Western Massachusetts. His published books include Spinning Tales Weaving Hope (with the Stories For World Change Network) for New Society Press and People of the Earth (coauthored with Ellen Evert Hopman) for Destiny Books.