PreS-Gr 3—,The first DVD from the Laurie Berkner Band in five years, this party-themed production features 12 original music videos, a mix of new songs and fan favorites. A party invitation drops from the sky and is opened, and Laurie and her band mates are surprised when a pop-up party room springs to life. They jump into the party where they are joined by a multicultural group of children who dance and sing along with the band. Berkner leads "This Hat," "Last Night I Had a Dream," and "Party Day." Then the band is invited to a birthday party where they sing "Balloons," "Shake Your Body Down," "Where Is the Cake?," and "Happy, Happy, Happy Birthday." Finally, they are transported to a pajama party and sing "The Cookie Bakers of the Night," "Choc-o-lot in My Pock-o-lot," "Pillowland," and "Goodnight." Footage of the band playing each song is mixed with shots of the children and computer-generated images, adding interest. Backdrops and costumes are bright and colorful, with lots of pop. The camera work is always sharp, panning, cutting in or out, or zooming in and out. Bonus materials on the DVD include Laurie recording an acoustic version of "My Family", a music video of "I Really Love to Dance" with footage of a birthday concert, and "Meet the Band," four vignettes to acquaint fans with the band members. The bonus CD includes fives songs from the DVD. Once again, the Laurie Berkner Band does a terrific job of sharing the joy of their music with kids.—,"Stephanie Bange, Wright State University, Dayton, OH"Science Copyright 2011 Reed Business Information.
Well-known children's musician Laurie Berkner bursts onto the children's music video scene with the energy and enthusiasm of her concert stage appearances fully intact. The Laurie Berkner Band, comprised of Laurie Berkner on vocals and guitar, Brian Mueller on bass and vocals, and Susie Lampert on keyboard and vocals (joined sporadically by Bob Golden on drums and additional instruments), is an accomplished group of musicians who create and perform whimsical, catchy children's songs in a folksy rock style. From the playful rhymes that declare Tuesday "snooze day" in "I'm Gonna Catch You" to the absurd image of fish taking showers and brushing their teeth in "The Goldfish," Laurie Berkner's songs celebrate a child's love of the ridiculous. The uninhibited trio performs live onstage ("Under a Shady Tree") or within simply animated scenes ("Bumblebee--Buzz, Buzz, Buzz") and the songs are undisputedly catchy--so catchy that many parents sheepishly admit to humming or even singing Laurie Berkner's songs full voice even when their children aren't around. In these days of splashy animation and over-thought, overly-glitzy children's music videos, it's a real treat to enjoy a simple production that features songs that kids love performed by musicians who appear to be having just as much fun as their young audiences. (Ages 1 to 8) --Tami Horiuchi