Friday, July 15, 2011

A Curious Glimpse of Michigan CD review and giveaway

I'm a Michigan girl, and I'm raising Michigan kids.

To me, that means sharing with my children my deep love for the beautiful state in which we live and travel. We appreciate so much of what this state has to offer, both in terms of history and nature. We buy Michigan-made products and take most of our vacations around our home state.

Recently, I came across a CD called A Curious Glimpse of Michigan, which was done by a guy from Grand Rapids named Kevin Kammeraad (and his friend Ryan Hipp and a whole bunch of other people!).

It's based on a Michigan poetry book of the same name that Kammeraad and Hipp put together a few years ago. The titles of the 49 tracks on the CD caught my eye because a lot of them were things I love about this state, such as:

a Day on the Mighty Mac

the Petoskey stone

the brook trout

the dwarf lake iris

the painted turtle

and LOTS more.

So, I contacted Kammeraad and he agreed to send me a copy of the CD to review. It arrived quickly, and the boys and I popped it into the CD player to listen to on a drive. Right away, several songs stood out as Logan's favorites.

He LOVES "Cousin Jacks," which is a tribute to the mining men of the past and their delicious legacy: the PASTY (the first fast food, dontcha know?)

"The Fur Trade?" is another favorite. It's got a punk rock feel to it, and both my kids love singing along to the song about the different animals trading fur with each other. OK, I admit it, I often find myself singing this one, too, as I do the dishes or go about my day. It's really catchy.

"Curious Questions" and other "Man on the Street" tracks like "Brook Trout" make my kids giggle, too. They LOVE it!

Another cool thing is that Logan is actually learning real facts about our state from listening to this CD. I'm sure Jordan is, too. He just can't really tell us about it quite yet.

Here's Kevin on how this CD came about:

"The idea of this CD began to develop while we were making the book. The book began as an opportunity when EDCO asked me about making a book of poetry all about Michigan. I wasn't sure what they had in mind, but they allowed us to write about anything, as long as it was about something to do with Michigan. It became "A Curious Glimpse of Michigan" since we wanted it a little odd and we knew it would be random (a glimpse).

After finishing the book, we started to create musical interpretations of the poems and ideas. It surely was a lot of work to put it all together, but it was a lot of fun to see it unfold. At first, we thought it would be just some of the poems done as songs, but we kept coming up with more ideas and because of the many artists involved, it all came together!"

Kevin's favorites:
Super State. "This was one of the first poems we intended to create musically."

The Fur Trade. "This was one of the last songs made. ScribbleMonster presented the idea of this one and it came together very quickly. I never heard a demo of the song; they just went into the studio and recorded it in one night!"

Over 635 Cities. "It's just a fun, funky song."

"I like each song for one reason or another though!"

I found out that just one week after I received my CD, Kammeraad was going to be in town doing a children's program at the local library. That was yesterday, so the kids and I headed up there to meet Kevin in person and see what he was all about.

It was a great, entertaining show and Kevin is a really nice person who knows just how to connect with kids. He had his young son, Carlos, along, too and it was a pleasure to meet him as well. I'd had to wake Jordan up early from his nap to go to the show, and he was rather crabby during the performance, but somehow afterward, when Kevin got down and spoke directly to him, Jordan was smiling and supplying the correct words for the songs.

Here are a few shots from the show. I should've used my flash, so they're a little dark.

We really enjoyed it and after realizing there was a Curious Glimpse of Michigan book that the CD was based on, we came right home and managed to find a copy to order. (It's out of print, but a limited number of them are available--new and used--at We just HAD to have one!

When he sent my CD, Kevin was nice enough to send an extra copy for me to give away here on my blog. If you're a Michigan parent who would like to share fun and interesting facts about this wonderful state with your kids (or if you just like visiting Michigan, or if you just want it for your own listening enjoyment) then here's your chance to win one!

Simply leave a comment on this post (don't forget to include your e-mail address) telling me your favorite thing or things about Michigan. That's it. Easy peasy. Share this giveaway on facebook with your friends and I'll give you another entry (Paste the link in a separate comment for it to count).

I'll randomly choose a winner a week from today. That's next Friday.

Good luck!

Oh! I knew I was forgetting something... This is Kevin's website. Go check him out. He's neat!


Natalie Wright said...

Hi, my name is Natalie Wright, my email is I love Michigan and we are so blessed to live in this awesome state, one of my all time favorite things is go up north to Gods country.We love Boyne and Traverse City, the kiddos absolutely love it!! Thanks Krystal, awesome blog :)

carlyhan78 said...

I call this "Kid music that won't make your eardrums explode." Glad you liked the CD & book! Have you checked out Scribblemonster? We're huge fans here. Anyway, I don't need the book or CD - you know why :-) Love the pics!

Anonymous said...

There is always something to do here in Michigan. I love living in Grand Rapids - all of the other cool cities are close by!

Sarah M said...

I love the seasons (even though spring was MIA this year)!

Krystal said...

entry for Mindi, since she couldn't do it.

Maggie Smith said...

Oh man! My favorite part of Michigan I guess would have to be the majestic Great Lakes....everything else pales in comparison!

I also love that you live here <3
newmommyin08 AT Yahoo DOT com

mary smith said...

My favorite thing about michigan is snow at Christmas:)