Jack Johnson - Sing-A-Longs and Lullabies for the film Curious George

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Album: Sing-A-Longs and Lullabies for the film Curious George
Artist: Jack Johnson

Jack Johnson has perfected the surfer style acoustic funk. His songs are simple, catchy, and work well as sing-alongs. All of these qualities make Jack a perfect person to pen songs for a children's album backing the new Curious George film.

Originally Jack decided to record songs for this project so his son could hear his music in a medium he could like. Not too many toddlers are going to chuck on dad's disc and acousticly rock out, but a lot of kids will make a parent let them watch a movie time and time again. So, to support this project, Jack recruited some of his best friends to contribute to the LP, including Ben Harper, Zach from ALO, Matt Costa and G. Love.

The combination of songs Jack picked for this album includes some classic Jack sounding tracks, so new versions of older songs (My Own Two Hands and Lullabye were both released on Ben at Matt's previous albums and We're Going to be Friends is a White Stripes cover that Jack started playing on tour many moons ago), and some songs aimed directly at the kids.

The first two songs, Upside Down and Broken, are the strongest tracks on the album. The structure of these upbeat sing-alongs will be easy to recognize for Jack fans. Upside Down features Adam Topol's bongos & Merlo's simple bass lines, some Flake-esque chords patterns and an infectious chorus. Broken fits perfectly into the songs Jack put out on the last album, In Between Dreams. The gentle piano makes the track fuller and honestly, this is one of the best songs Jack's every written. Even Wrong Turn seems like it could have found a home on the On and On release. So I guess the best way to put it is - if you like Jack's other albums, you will like these songs. It almost seems like these tracks are some b-sides that were never released or Jack had been working on and never quite finished until now.

Songs like People Watching and Supposed to Be are a little weak in my opinion, but I think that is probably just because all his other work has set the bar ridiculously high.

The songs penned for kids obviously aren't as catchy, and focus more on putting out some good messages for kids. The Sharing Song, the 3R's and Jungle Gym sound like any of the songs artists put out for kids albums. Fun, upbeat and talk about something positive. While some people might not be into these, you have to remember that the album is for kids – more or less.

The tracks Ben and Matt contribute are nice. A stripped down acoustic/ukulele version of the reggae-esque opener from Ben's Diamonds on the inside album is a nice song. Anyone who ever heard the Carson Daly or KRCW performances will know how great these two sound together. Matt and Jack harmonize well on Lullabye, a song grabbed from Matt's latest EP. Both are nice tracks, and add some variety to the album.

Overall, I think this is an album fans should buy. If you are new to jack, the kids' songs might turn you off, but the singles on the collection are worth the price tag.

Check out :: Broken

1 Responses to “Jack Johnson - Sing-A-Longs and Lullabies for the film Curious George”

  1. rooney 

    i love that version of 'two hands' . granted, it's infinitely better when you have ack accompanying the song with his own brand of interpretive dance.

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