Randy Kaplan – The Kids Are All Id

Reviewed by Gregory Keer

My five year old son was in a bad mood, upset that I wouldn’t let him wear dress shoes with shorts to go to the park. Then, he stopped to listen to the title track of Randy Kaplan’s The Kids Are Al Id CD.

“That’s a funny song,” he said as he laid down on his back to listen to more.

A couple of minutes later, my middle child came in, just in time to hear Kaplan’s version of the traditional “The Derby Rain,” and he commented, “Write this down. My son said that is really good music.”

I must tell you that my kids product test a lot of the music I review, but this time was different because they floated in without invitations and had immediately positive reactions. Frankly, you shouldn’t need more convincing commentary from here on out, but I’ll deliver a little more because this album of original songs and cover tunes has the effect of a Sunday sidewalk performance that becomes an afternoon’s highlight for normally jaded pedestrians. 

Playing off the success of 2008’s Loquat Rooftop, the singer-songwriter culls 17 pieces of music from the various levels of his and his family’s consciousness (thus the reference to the “id”). From the folk friendliness of “My Little Laugh” to the wacky grooviness of “Is She a Girl or is She a Monkey,” Kaplan keeps the playful vibe going throughout. Much like his kid radio hit “No Never” from the Loquat recording, “Don’t You Leave Me Here” is a star track for the way Kaplan turns the traditional blues composition into a comedic play about a kid being left with the babysitter (complete with the character voices of a mom, babysitter, and child).

The diverse treats on this album never end. Kaplan offers up a language lesson in a story song on “The Hebrew Speaking Bear,” brings the books of Ezra Jack Keats to life on three tracks, including the linguistically clever “Dream Hat,” and beautifully personalizes the Bob Dylan classic “Forever Young.”

I often get carried away in calling albums one of the best of the year, but for all of its ability to capture children’s perspectives and parents’ experiences this one is one of the best I have ever heard. You need to hear it too.

 www.randykaplan.com – $12.99 – Ages 2-9

Family Man Recommends, Family MusicPermalink

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *