Darren and I have always been connected by a love of music and art. We both play numerous musical instruments and spent our dating years attending a plethora of concerts and music + art festivals.
Raileigh definitely inherited our love of music and art. She loves to listen to music and dance. She also has quite the creative side and can spend the entire day creating alongside me. I would venture to say that she is happiest when twirling and moving to music. It warms my heart to see how happy moving to music and art makes her.
Recently, we had the opportunity to check out a CD that had us moving from the moment we turned it on. Picasso, That’s Who (And So Can You!) is the newest CD from Hope Harris. This CD takes listeners on a tuneful celebration of 19th and 20th century visual artists. Each and every song is a mini-lesson in art appreciation. Not only will the music encourage you to get up and move, it will encourage you to pick up a paintbrush and create as well.
The track listing is a representation of some of our favorite well-known artists:
- A-C-T-I-O-N (Jackson Pollack)
- Picasso, That’s Who! (Pablo Picasso)
- Who Made the Splash? (David Hockney)
- Grandma Moses (Grandma Moses)
- Swingin’ Little Duck (Alexander Calder)
- See A Painting by Georgia O’Keefe (Georgia O’Keefe)
- Dot In Motion (Paul Klee)
- Telling Stories (Romare Bearden)
- M-A-T-I-S-S-E, Matisse (Henri Matisse)
- Impression. Monet (Claude Monet)
- Paint A Picture, Too
Picasso, That’s Who (And So Can You!) invites kids to hop a train with Romare Bearden, action paint like Jackson Pollock, take a line for a walk with Paul Klee, jump off the diving board into a painting by David Hockney, look closely at the petals of a flower like Georgia O’Keeffe, and more. It makes art come to life in a way unlike any I have experienced before. It is pure magic!
One way in which Harris does this is by matching musical styles with the mood of each artist. A funky retro rock ‘n’ roll ‘60s groove that’s sure to move listeners to action describes the free spirit of Jackson Pollock’s art in sound. Lots of bluegrass pickin’ expresses Grandma Moses, Alexander Calder receives a cool jazz treatment, and Georgia O’Keeffe’s vision is conveyed through a gentle waltz with soothing cello harmonies. Paul Klee’s song, Dot In Motion, has a solid roots rock feel, while Impression Monet (decorated with the distinctive sound of a French accordion) gives one the feel of floating down the Seine. Songs about David Hockney, Romare Bearden, and Henri Matisse round out the album, each offering a distinctive change of pace.
Our absolute favorite track (and they are all wonderful!) is A-C-T-I-O-N, the song about Jackson Pollack. Darren and I have always been fans of Pollack and in many ways, Raileigh is creatively a lot like him. She has the ability to color within the lines, but she chooses not to. She has coloring books with pictures and lines within them, but she just ignores the lines and makes her own creations. She is even does dot-to-dots in a nontraditional way. She will connect 1 to 2 and so on, but her lines are never straight. They are curvy and wavy, and sometimes venture halfway across the page before finally connecting to the next number. She can draw straight lines, I just think that she finds it more fun not to.
Hope Harris says that her goal with Picasso, That’s Who (And So Can You!) is to “spark curiosity and inspire creativity”. After listening to this upcoming release, I would say that she has succeeded.
I am a firm believer in a supporter of the arts and this CD combines art and music in a way that is truly inspirational. If you are looking for a unique and fun way to introduce your children to some of the great masters of art or just want to encourage them to get up and dance, then I could not think of a better way to do this than Picasso, That’s Who (And So Can You!).
One lucky Wee Share reader is going to win their very own copy of the CD!