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Live Music Week happens bi-annually at WERS to raise money to keep our station running. We ask if you can pledge your support in order to keep us live on air, bringing you live performances from your favorite musicians. Pledges can be made here.
It is Live Music Week again here at 88.9 WERS! We are bringing you all of your favorite music live in studio, and asking for your support for non-commercial public radio. During this week we are able to bring in some of your favorite artists to play for you live on-air because we love you! I was lucky enough to have the pleasure of interviewing Alastair Moock and his pal Anand Nayak when they came into The Playground.
Alastair Moock just released an album entitled Singing Our Way Through: Songs for the World’s Bravest Kids. He was encouraged to do so by the diagnosis of one of his young twin daughters with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. He began writing and performing songs to keep his daughter, Clio’s, spirits up while in the hospital. And with the help of a crowd funding effort through gofundme.com, he was able to raise enough money to record a collection of the songs to inspire strength in children going through cancer treatment. Alastair was even able to send the album to 1,500 families of patients to spread his message of strength and good will to others working to get well.
The first song that he played for us was “These Are My Friends” from his album of the same name. This tune is a fun story of imagination and personification that details the personalities of all of the different toys in his toy chest. From a purple penguin with a pompadour that he calls pesky panda to a paper clip that he’s bent into a cool shape the song is a celebration of ingenuity with a playful air about it. The song hits its comedic summit when Alastair sings about his collection of stale French fries and how now he has a collection of flies. The message of the song is that friends are people and even things that you can count on to be there for you.
Next up was a song called “B-R-A-V-E” from Singing Our Way Through. This is a beat box based, old school hip hop inspired, song that encourages courage for kids that have to go to the doctor’s office or hospital. The song builds from taking your temperature under the tongue to getting a shot. “Needles are for sewing,” he says, but before he even knows it he’s gotten the shot and didn’t even have to scream. The song is a fun way to deal with the dread that comes before a doctor’s office visit and carries the message that you do actually feel better when it’s all over with.
The last song that Alastair Moock and Friends played for us was “When I Get Bald” from his latest album. This song exemplifies Alastair’s message of positivity in the face of adversity as seen in the music video that goes along with the song. The solidarity Alastair, his daughter Clio and his band mates shared by shaving their heads shows how togetherness can help people get through the toughest of times. Alastair, of course, takes a comedic approach to the circumstance. He sings about drawing a face on the back of his bald head and naming it “back head Fred.” He equates the loss of hair with feeling free, loving someone no matter what they look like and using the hair to make something positive like building a place for bird’s to nest.
Alastair Moock is continuing to promote positivity in the face of adversity. He and Anand Nayak are part of a network of children’s music writers and performers that branches out to Steve Songs, Roni and Scott Arbo and Daisy Mayhem. To learn more about this group please go to singingourway.com roniarbo.com, and please continue to support WERS throughout Live Music Week so that we can continue bringing you innovative and new children’s music on The Playground!