"I'm Growing has to be the most inventive, unique children's music CD of the year." KidsMusicThatRocks.blogspot.com
"Different from any other children's album out there, and all the better for it."
New York Post
Some kids never grow up! That can be a good thing, as evidenced by the latest CD from Gunnar Madsen. The Grammy nominated singer-songwriter, author and filmmaker has built a reputation for smart indie music and books for kids. This release adds a new dimension to the family music genre.
The 15 new songs are lyrically and musically rich, working on multiple levels, making this an album the whole family can truly enjoy together. From the upbeat Brian Eno-like choral richness of the title track to the catchy calypso vibes of “Sun Comes Up” (in a beguiling 7/8 meter); from the drunken cats of “Bowl of Milk” to the rockin’ librarians of “Library Party”; from the guy who’s allergic to waltzes to the amazing vocalese rendition of Mozart’s 40th Symphony, the recording reveals Madsen’s wide-ranging compositional skill and witty yet soulful way with lyrics.
Even the silliest songs have depth. “Always on the Bottom” pokes gentle fun at type A parenting, allowing a kid to be happily and creatively average. Madsen describes the song as a post-modern “I Got Plenty o’ Nuttin’.” “Simple” celebrates the times when you turn off your analytical brain and just enjoy the basics of life. Madsen’s resonant rendition of the American folk classic “Shenandoah” reflects his love for this song since he sang it in elementary school. “So many songs we had to sing in school were dreadful,” Madsen remembers. “That song has stuck with me through the years. You can interpret it in so many ways.”
The colorfully illustrated I’m Growing CD package includes 16 pages of liner notes, including full lyrics and artist comments, making this a great gift that listeners will want to pore over.
Madsen offers his playful humor and excellent musicianship in every song. He clearly hasn’t lost his sense of childlike wonder. “I still get the biggest thrill from learning new things,” he says. ”I may no longer be growing any taller, but my heart and mind continue to grow and surprise me.” Madsen lives in Berkeley, CA with his wife and 5 year old son. He says nearly full-time parenting has added a new dimension to his songwriting.