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Turn Up the Music! / I Like Being Me! (music CDs) Review by Cindy West

Lanny Sherwin
Sherwin Communications, Inc.
2180 Alisos Dr.
Santa Barbara, CA 93108

Turn Up the Music! and I Like Being Me! are music CDs featuring singer and songwriter Lanny Sherwin. Geared toward children ages four through nine, both CDs offer a variety of music styles--from peppy to ballad. A couple of the songs are even sung a cappella (and very nicely done, I might add).

Sure to catch the young child's attention are some very silly songs like "Stinky Feet" and "A Cappella, Part 2". On the other hand, some songs deal with serious "kid issues." For instance, "I Need to Be Alone" is about a young child who needs a break from a noisy house, a baby spitting up on him, and a friend laughing at his Lego tower that fell. The song "Monster Masher" will give children courage to face their nighttime fears. The more serious songs are sung in a very lighthearted way, though - not too serious.

Even though I feel sure your children will enjoy these CDs, I'm not so sure you will as the parent. First, some songs are written from the public school perspective--talking about homework and the like. Second, I found a potentially inappropriate word in one of the songs. (Some families may consider the word "butt" a no-no.) And finally, the song "Dad Said a Bad Word" is about a child who hears his parents say bad words, and those words get stuck in his mind. Even though the child knows the words are wrong and tries to "teach" his mom and dad not to say them, I found the song unsuitable.

Overall, I like the original tunes and many of the lyrics. Upon visiting the website, I found that a portion of the proceeds of all sales is given to worthy causes, which melted my heart a little. Would I buy the CDs if I didn't already own them? Probably not. I try to be pretty careful about what I place before my children's eyes and ears. Because I own them, I will probably play them in the car and just skip over the songs I don't like.

Product review by Cindy West, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November 2007