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MP3 MaryLee - Grasshoppers Three - Bug Songs

Beautiful, clear vocals with guitar accompaniment. Great for family sing-along.

19 MP3 Songs
KIDS/FAMILY: Sing-Along/Interactive, FOLK: Children''s Folk

When the American Library Association chose “Catch the Reading Bug” as the Summer Reading theme for 2008, MaryLee knew it was time to create her new CD "Grasshoppers Three-Bug Songs." Here’s an interview with MaryLee, winner of 4 Parents Choice Awards and 2 American Library Association Notable Children’s Recordings at Piper Grove Music:

PGM: “Where did you get all the bug songs?”

ML: “There’s an amazing number of American folksongs that feature bugs. I’ve been collecting them for years. And I wrote a few to add to the collection.”

PGM: “It seems like a funny topic for the Libraries’ Summer Reading.”

ML: “Yeah, but “Catch the Reading Bug” is such a cute idea for the littlest library patrons. The first couple of shows I performed, there were a lot of “eeeooo’s” from the audience and mothers’ faces had that disgusted look. But then, I started explaining some of the most amazing things about bugs. Really they’re fascinating. And just imagine—we have 60% of the same genes as a fruit fly!”

PGM: “Good to know! So what else did you discover about bugs?”

ML: “I loved finding out that grasshoppers and crickets make their sounds by rubbing their wings or their legs together or a leg and a wing. That’s why they’re always depicted as playing fiddles. It’s that same sawing motion. And they are so loud! They really project a huge sound from such a small size. It’s remarkable!”

PGM: “I took note of the songs Burl Ives made famous on your album. You worked with him didn’t you?”

ML: “I sang and performed with Burl from 1971—till he passed in 1995. He sang right up until the end. Being on stage with him was a performer’s dream. He was generous with his stage time—and always included younger musicians in his show. He had the gift of drawing an audience into the emotion of each song. He’d surprise a sophisticated audience with a kids’ song like ‘I Know An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly.’ He’d pull tremendous emotion from the old abolitionist ballad ‘Blue Tail Fly.’ And when he sang about the hobo life in ‘Big Rock Candy Mountain,’ everyone wanted to grab their nap sacks and hike in the woods!”

PGM: “How did working with Burl Ives effect your style?”

ML: “Burl kept it simple onstage. He sang folk songs with deep feeling. He was a wandering minstrel. Now I wander from library to library, school to school, and I sing. I keep it simple. I invite young people to listen and savor the words and emotion of a simple song.”

PGM: “What will people get when they get “Grasshoppers Three - Bug Songs?”

ML: “Well, they’ll get a lot of songs that mention bugs, songs that might bug them and songs that will encourage them to ‘catch the reading bug!’ Folk songs have rich ties to our history and the American way of life. You can learn a lot from a good folk song!”

People who are interested in Burl Ives Raffi should consider this download.
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