Happy Accidents, the latest Billy Jonas recording, is funky folk music for the whole family. It’s musical medicine for the mind body and spirit of young and old alike. It’s a splendiferous sonic sojourn into the near and far reaches of fun and fantasy, possibility and purpose, word-play, wonder, heart, and hope.
The 18 songs feature 13 originals and 5 adaptations of traditional tunes, all destined to inspire and inform. For instance, “Eyes Wide Open,” “You are Not Alone,” “Get There,” and “Open Sesame” each provide a different ‘musical map’ for navigating challenging situations; “To Be One” and “Hollow Bamboo” enliven the soul; “Cabeza” teaches Spanish; “Happy Accident” explores four mistakes with wonderful outcomes; and “What Kind of Dog are You?!,” “Vitamin Alphabet,” “Knock Knock,” and “One Tutu too Many” are just plain FUN question-answer songs that invite the listener to guess-along and sing along.
The arrangements include Jonas’ trademark homemade “re-percussion’’ drum set, as well as a glorious panoply of found sounds (rubber bands, body percussion, door squeaks, apple cider jugs), exotic kalimbas and marimbas, conventional instruments (guitars, bass, piano, banjo, accordion, tuba) and 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-part vocal harmonies.
The finale of the CD is the Wake Up Suite,” a series of 5 songs that trace a young person’s morning rituals. Jonas and an 8-year-old friend sing duets designed to be easily learned and re-sung, to help families move their morning process along with as much fun as possible. The pieces include "Gotta Get Up," "Two Minute Shower," "Eat Something!" "Brush Your Teeth," and "Totally Ready to Go."
Happy Accidents is Jonas’ 7th recording, and his 2nd “family” CD. Built on a foundation of voice and percussion, with strong, memorable melodies, it has something for everyone, regardless of age. It was recorded over the course of a year, primarily in Asheville, NC, with the help of co-producers Bill Melanson (from The Billys) and Adam Johnson.
Happy Accidents features more than 40 local musicians and a host of nationally and internationally renowned co-conspirators, including David Wilcox, Moira Smiley, The Fire Cracker Jazz Band, Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, River Guerguerian, Don Porterfield, Jake Wolf, Ashley Farmer, and Eliot Wadopian.