Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Biggest Everything in the World

Sometime after I interviewed librarian and performer Joel Caithamer for this blog, Joel kindly sent me a copy of his new album, The Biggest Everything in the World.* While it’s easy to fall back onto the usual comparisons with Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash, there’s no denying that infectious rockabilly sound. Whether the songs are about midnight munchies (“Chicken Sandwich”) or changing into a robot (“Feeling Science Fiction”) Joel Caithamer’s lyrics have child-appeal served up with lots of electric guitar and backbeat. My favorite songs are "Strange Foodstuff" and the punchy “Mekong Catfish”:

Lost an eye in a fight with a cousin from Japan
Got a fishing hook collection and a mug to beat the band
Someone grabbed his tail on a tourist expedition
But he tipped the pontoon over when he made a split decision

It's pure coincidence that the last song, "Under the Bed," was released the same year as "Under My Bed," by Recess Monkey. They are two very different songs (both good!) employing one of the enduring themes of childhood.** As Eric Herman pointed out to me last summer, how many different musicians have sung about "ants in your pants?"

Here is the link to listen to song snippets at CDBaby: The Biggest Everything in the World

I’ve decided that a double-billed concert of Joel Caithamer and Johnny Bregar is definitely on my wish-list. Then again, I’d like to see an entire weekend festival concert series made up of really good but not overly-famous performers for children. Does anyone have any ideas of what to call this festival? Please exclude the prefixes/suffixes “Fest” “Looza” and “Stock” from your answers. (Yes, I know I just ruined someone’s fun.)

*Disclaimer: I only review CDs I like.

**Unfortunately, it's also a continual theme of adulthood, what with those scary, scary dust-bunnies and wretched "presents" the cats leave behind.


adrienne said...

Thanks for reviewing this. It looks like another must-have for WPL's collection! :)

Vivian Mahoney said...

This sounds fun! Thanks for the review.

Saints and Spinners said...

Adrienne and Vivian: Let me know what you think of the album when you get ahold of a copy!

Lone Star Ma said...

Ha! Unfortunate theme of adulthood! I would never venture under mine.

abcgirl said...

i just recently discovered johnny bregar through zooglobble and i'm thinkin' i might have to do a happy stuff review of him soon. i'm waiting until the new cd comes out. maybe.

if you take fest, looza and stock out, how will people know that it's music? How about Jamboree Jr.? or the Sock Monkey Music Festival (or is that too close to "Fest"?)? or the Jacks and Jumprope Jamboree? (wait, i've used Jamboree twice now... lemme think...) Binky Blues Fest? D'oh! There's that fest thing again. um.... Okay, how about the We Tie our own Shoes Shindig or the Fork-Eaters Fete? But then Dan Zanes wouldn't come...

Saints and Spinners said...

ABCGirl: You have a good point. Okay, let's keep "Fest" and "festival" but NO LOOZA! :) I like the We Tie Our Own Shoes Shindig. Jamboree is good too, because of the association with music jams. I'm guessing Dan Zanes probably wouldn't come anyway. I definitely want Randy Kaplan on the list, though.

Saints and Spinners said...

P.S. I've got it: The Forks and Laces Festival!