Leeny & Tamara | Sharing the Same Stars

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Kids/Family: Children's Pop Kids/Family: Educational Moods: Mood: Fun
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Sharing the Same Stars

by Leeny & Tamara

Fasten your seat belts for the first collaboration between award-winning children’s music artist Ilene (Leeny) Altman and NYC singer/songwriter Tamara Hey. Funny, intelligent, and catchy songs about ladybugs, epidermis, shyness, the USA, and kindness.
Genre: Kids/Family: Children's Pop
Release Date: 

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1. Put On My Seat Belt
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2:20 $0.99
2. Taking Turns
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2:20 $0.99
3. I Used To Be Shy
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2:04 $0.99
4. Hold It
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2:09 $0.99
5. Ladybug, Ladybug, Ladybu-u-ug
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3:07 $0.99
6. My Baby
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3:06 $0.99
7. Your Epidermis Is Showing
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2:40 $0.99
8. Little Sister
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2:42 $0.99
9. It's Cool To Be You
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3:03 $0.99
10. Vitamin C
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2:35 $0.99
11. Singing Beach
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2:58 $0.99
12. I Came Out Backwards
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13. Dinah Sore Loser
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3:09 $0.99
14. Across the USA
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5:52 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
AWARDS
Winner of a 2010 Parents' Choice Recommended Award
Honored as a 2010 National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA) "Rising Star"
Winner of a 2009 Preferred Choice Award from Creative Child Magazine

REVIEWS
"It's hard to believe that this is a first joint effort for Leeny and Tamara. From '50s doo-wop to pop country, their fresh, unexpected vocal lines weave through all types of music to make this album a fun ride for the ears. Musical arrangements call to mind the epic partnership of Lennon & McCartney. There are a lot of funny lyrics that are actually educational for your preschoolers and young grade-schoolers. Songs send great messages about taking turns, buckling up, and being comfortable in your own skin. Catchy, quirky lyrics touch on a spectrum of kiddie topics. Parents and children will love learning, giggling, and singing along." (5/5 stars)
- Jessica Dawson, Common Sense Media

"A fun, funny and educational CD for the under 10 crowd. This is an album that kids and parents alike will enjoy listening to over and over again. Leeny and Tamara have killer voices and sing in every style imaginable. The music will brighten your day and help the little ones learn a few things while they sing and dance to the music and have a rocking good time. Adults will be having the same rocking good time as the kids. This CD should be in the collections of any parent with young kids." (5/5 stars)
- Andrea Guy, Ariel Publicity, ReviewYou.com

"Leeny and Tamara have created a really fun, really catchy set of songs that actually teach us things. I ve found myself saying things like, 'Did you know there are over five thousand species of ladybugs? And some of them are blue!' or 'Did you know that other animals can produce their own vitamin C, but humans have lost that ability and that's why we need to eat oranges or we may get scurvy?' Yeah, I'm a riot at parties. Their song, 'It's Cool To Be You' highlights the fact that we all have our own talents and we're all different. My son Ivan is blind and can't walk and I can't remember ever hearing a song that actually admits that 'Some wheel around in chairs; Some can't hear and some can't see.' It's refreshing."
- Amber Bobnar, BostonChildrensMusic.com

Please visit our website to see more Reviews for "Sharing the Same Stars"
www.leenyandtamara.com

THE MAKING OF "SHARING THE SAME STARS"
“Don’t worry, nothing happened to Steve!” Leeny (Ilene Altman) replies when asked about her previous musical partner. Leeny and Steve’s debut children’s CD, "Be Nice", garnered several honors in 2008, including a Parents’ Choice Award and a Children’s Music Web Award as Best Recording for Preschoolers. “As we were releasing the first album, I just couldn’t stop writing new songs, so I figured I better take full advantage of this boon of creative juices (not from concentrate). Since Steve was up to his ankles crushing grapes, pursuing his dream to be a winemaker, I thought it would be fun to try to write with another longtime friend, Tamara Hey.”

Called “one of the best songwriters in town,” NYC singer/songwriter Tamara jumped at the opportunity. “When Ilene asked me if I would be interested in writing kids’ tunes, I thought it would be a cool challenge,” Tamara says. “I really liked Leeny and Steve’s album – the sense of humor, the lyrics that were educational while still being fun. The music seemed like it would a blast to perform, and appeal to adults as well as kids. Plus, I learned new things from those songs!”

The result is Leeny’s sophomore release, "SHARING THE SAME STARS" by Leeny and Tamara, an album of duets and shared lead vocal duties. “The title comes from a lyric in our song, ‘It’s Cool To Be You,’” Tamara says. “‘We are all just people who are different, but all of us are sharing the same stars. How we treat people who are different makes us the kind of people who we are.’ That pretty much sums up what we were trying to get across with that song and this record in general. We weren’t trying to make a political statement or anything like that...” Leeny continues “...but really just to convey a message of acceptance. Different is good, so just be yourself. It all starts when we’re kids – learning social behavior, figuring out right from wrong. But it’s also about respecting animals and the Earth, appreciating what you have and sharing. We’re all in this world together so we’d better make the best of it!”

The pair first met when they attended Berklee College of Music in the early 90s as songwriting students. Tamara recounts their initial meeting: “I introduced myself, and I must say, she totally blew me off!” “So not true!” Leeny counters. “Tamara doesn’t know this, but I may have been a little intimidated by her. Oh man, now I’ll never hear the end of it!” Tamara adds, “We shared a love of the Odd Couple and Seinfeld, The Beatles, and Raising Arizona. We were fast friends and admired each other’s different songwriting styles.” Leeny continues, “And it turned out that Tamara had gone to high school (The School of Performing Arts in NYC) with one of my cousins. I love ‘small world’ stuff like that. Funny, it only took 20 years for us to write together again!”

Leeny and Tamara enlisted the help of friend, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and arranger, Art Hays, who produced Tamara’s previous CDs, "Miserably Happy" (2008) and "Right This Minute" (2005). The two positively gush when speaking about Hays. Tamara says, “Art has so many great ideas about arrangements, background vocals, and parts, and he hears things that nobody else picks up. He also comes from the same era as we do and appreciates Sesame Street, The Electric Company, and Schoolhouse Rock and understands why they were so special.” Leeny notes, “It seems like he knows every single song ever recorded. Art really wanted to make sure he captured the sound of specific genres very authentically (i.e. reggae, girl groups) – you mention a style and he just gets it. And he can play so many instruments so well. I think if we’d given him time, he probably could have learned to play the fiddle!”

“We were also very fortunate that an amazing pianist and trumpeter just happened to be married to Tamara, and added his handiwork to a few tracks,” says Leeny about Henry Hey, who has toured and recorded with artists including Rod Stewart and Harry Belafonte. Virtuoso contemporary violinist Christian Howes (Les Paul, Bill Evans) played fiddle on “Across the USA” and the talented Colton Weatherston (Hot Club of Detroit) played electric guitar on “Put On My Seat Belt.” Key Wilde created the artwork and design for the album. “Key is an amazing artist and children’s musician, and his illustrations are like little perfect works of art for each song,” says Tamara. “And mastering engineer Duncan Stanbury (formerly of the legendary Frankford Wayne in NYC) gave our album the clean, vibrant sound we were looking for.”

Leeny recounts the first day of recording at Art’s studio in New York on January 15: “I remember how peaceful and beautiful it was waking up that morning with snow falling. Tamara was a little bummed out about the snow and frigid temperatures, but I said, ‘Snow is good luck!’ At our recording session that afternoon, we heard that a plane had crash-landed into the Hudson River, just a couple of miles from us. Later we discovered the heroic story of Captain Chesley B. ‘Sully’ Sullenberger III and the miracle of US Air Flight #1549. It felt like this album would be inextricably tied to that event.”

The songs are geared toward children ages 12 months to 10 years. But Tamara mentions that, “Even infants as young as five months in my Bouncing Baby Music Class react positively to the music, and parents appreciate stuff that’s cool musically and lyrically. These songs will last a long time through somebody’s life because as a child grows with the songs and understands more things, the songs also grow with them.” “And we’ve used a lot of our own childhood experiences, about overcoming shyness or dealing with an incorrigible little sister, to relate to what kids are going through,” Leeny says. “One of the most important songs on the CD is ‘Put On My Seat Belt.’ If we can help increase child passenger safety, and maybe even get kids to remind their parents to use seat belts for themselves, then we really can’t ask for much more than that.”

One of the more ambitious songs on the CD is “Across the USA,” a marathon of a song with lyrics that include facts about every state. “I had this vision that next July 4th, Tamara and I would kick off a ‘50 States In 50 Days Tour!’” Leeny says. “It’s always been a little dream of mine to visit all 50 states and this seems like a perfect opportunity!” Tamara chimes in, “Maybe for the next album we should do a song about Italy or Paris… I’ll sign up for that tour right now!” In the meantime, keep an eye out for live performances in the northeast where they are based (Tamara in NY and Leeny in MA). They are also available for school and educational programs, and writing custom songs for special projects.


Reviews


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Andrea Guy

Sharing The Same Stars
Review Summary: Leeny and Tamara have created a fun, funny and educational CD for the under 10 crowd with Sharing The Same Stars. This is an album that kids and parents alike will enjoy listening to over and over again.

It's hard to find music for those kiddies that aren’t quite ready for Hannah Montana and The Jonas Brothers but have outgrown the more childlike melodies. Well, that’s where Leeny and Tamara and Sharing The Same Stars come in. These ladies are bringing this fun rock and pop album to the little ones and they are bringing along a good message or learning experience for the ride, and the best part is that the kids won’t even notice the educational bits as they listen to the catchy tunes.

Take the song Your Epidermis Is Showing, for instance. Not only are your kids going to be able to sing out E-P-I-D-E-R-M-I-S, they are even going to know what it is before they get to health class! It's Cool To Be You reminds us all that it's good and cool to be unique. Ladybug, Ladybug Ladybu-u-ug has a fun 60s pop feel to it that will have everyone singing and clapping along and don’t think you won’t come away from that song not knowing a little big more about those cute little insects, because you will! Were there any sore losers in your play group? Dinah Sore Loser will make you giggle, and not just at the clever pun.

Sharing The Same Stars is an album of 14 songs and every one of them will bring a smile to little faces. What makes the album so good? It's really a combination of things. At the top of the list is the fact that all the songs have a sound that isn’t like your run of the mill children’s record. The songs are truly pop songs for kids and kids' issues. Little Sister is one that any big sister can relate to, and with the 50’s girl group vibe it will have mom’s and grandmom’s singing along to. But the best track is for the “potty training” crew. You can’t listen to Hold It without cracking a smile, especially as you envision a child wishing they were a bird just so they could…well, go. Another thing that sets Leeny and Tamara apart from so many other children’s artists is that they don’t sing in that happy-go-lucky sing-song style that makes moms and dads run from the music. These two ladies have killer voices that are truly a pleasure to listen to no matter what your age. They sing in every style imaginable on this album so you’re bound to find at least one song to suit you fancy on Sharing The Same Stars.

So if you have some little ones that are longing for some new music, look to Leeny and Tamara and start Sharing The Same Stars with them. The music will brighten your day and help the little ones learn a few things while they sing and dance to the music and have a rocking good time. We even promise not to tell the adults that they will be having the same rocking good time as the kids. This CD should be in the collections of any parent with young kids.

Danny Matsukawa

Awesome Disc
This is a wonderful and fantastic CD. it has so much colorful music and lyrics and I enjoy this very much with my two kids. You can take it anywhere and enjoy it in the car or at gatherings or play dates and it is really fun and captures you from the start. I would recommend this to anyone and their relatives and their friends and their friends' relatives and neighbors and don't stop there, it is simply terrific and I'm so glad that they made this original CD. It is refreshing and a delight.

Nick

Great Family Fun
Wow. We had so much fun listening to this CD. It is great when the whole family can share something other than a movie or a TV show. We could actually sing along together and interact with each other. The songs are thoughtful and intelligent and not silly and trivial. I enjoyed it with my kids. I couldn't say that about most of the other stuff we have heard. They don't " sing down" to the kids. So much fun....we want more!!!!!

Andrea Guy

Sharing the Same Stars
Leeny and Tamara have created a fun, funny and educational CD for the under 10 crowd with Sharing The Same Stars. This is an album that kids and parents alike will enjoy listening to over and over again