Music Reviews
5:23 pm
Wed December 12, 2012

The Boogers And Play Date Make Punk Rock For Kids

Originally published on Wed December 12, 2012 5:29 pm

The kids' music scene reminds me a bit of the punk rock movement — both are steeped in a DIY attitude and unconcerned with mainstream success. So it was probably inevitable that punk — in all its forms — would find its way into kids' music.

Chicago-area band The Boogers are one group combining the two genres. The Boogers are old school: three, maybe four chords, with songs clocking in at about two minutes. On the band's latest album, Extractum Victoris, the influence of The Ramones is impossible to miss, but chief songwriter and parent Paul Crowe also has a Ph.D. in developmental psychology, so there's a positive message to go with all that pogo-ing.

Families who prefer their punk mixed with pop may find the debut album from Play Date more appealing. The band is fronted by the lead singer of New Jersey punk stalwarts The Bouncing Souls, but Play Date's album, Imagination, features a less aggressive sound. Gone is the rebellious attitude of punk — Imagination features songs about numbers, letters and daydreaming.

For parents who grew up on The Clash, Green Day and other punk bands, these albums are another way to share that musical passion with their own kids. But genre aside, there's always been a strong sense of self-discovery and independence in good kids' music, and both of these albums have that for the punk rocker in training.

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Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

These days, more and more musicians who specialize in adult fare are making songs for kids. That includes punk enthusiasts. Our kids' music reviewer Stefan Shepherd introduces us to two albums for the punk rocker in training.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GIMME SOME PANCAKES")

STEFAN SHEPHERD, BYLINE: The kids' music scene reminds me a bit of the punk movement. Both are steeped in a DIY attitude and unconcerned with mainstream success.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GIMME SOME PANCAKES")

THE BOOGERS: (Singing) Don't want Frosted Flakes...

SHEPHERD: So it was probably inevitable, punk music, in all its form, would find its way into kids' music.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GIMME SOME PANCAKES")

THE BOOGERS: (Singing) I want pancakes. Don't want a yogurt cup that would make me throw up. Don't want something to peel. I want pancakes.

SHEPHERD: That's "Gimme Some Pancakes" from the Chicago area band The Boogers. The Boogers are old school: three, maybe four chords, with songs clocking in at about two minutes. The influence of the Ramones is impossible to miss, but chief songwriter and parent Paul Crowe also has a PhD in developmental psychology, so there's a positive message to go along with all that pogoing.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THE SELF-ESTEEM MOVEMENT LET ME DOWN")

SHEPHERD: Families preferring their punk mixed with pop may find the debut album from Play Date more appealing. The band is fronted by the lead singer of New Jersey punk stalwarts the Bouncing Souls. Their album "Imagination" features a less-aggressive sound such as on the title track.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "IMAGINATION")

PLAY DATE: (Singing) You don't want to come out and play. We could play. What do you say?

SHEPHERD: Gone is the rebellious attitude of punk. "Imagination" features songs about numbers, letters and daydreaming.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "IMAGINATION")

PLAY DATE: (Singing) Let our kids fly away. No one needs to keep me. Imagination's all we need. Imagination's all we need. Imagination's all we need.

SHEPHERD: For parents who grew up on The Clash, Green Day and others, these albums are another way to share that musical passion with their own kids. But genre aside, there's always been a strong sense of self-discovery and independence in good kids' music, and both these albums feature that as well.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ANYONE CAN SING")

PLAY DATE: (Singing) When you have something to say, what do you feel on a sunny day? Is there a song inside your heart? Right now is the time to start to sing.

CORNISH: Stefan Shepherd reviewed "Extractum Victoris" by the band The Boogers, and "Imagination" from the band Play Date. Stefan writes about kids' music at zooglobble.com.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "ANYONE CAN SING")

PLAY DATE: (Singing) When you know something's so great. Shout it out and celebrate. When you feel inside you heart right now is the time to start to sing. Ooh, ooh, ooh. Ooh, ooh, ooh.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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