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It’s been a protracted day’s inch into the delta for Randy Kaplan. For more than a decade, Randy has mixed and merged silly storytelling with an affection for vulnerable delta blues. Which is no longer going to appear as pleasing a snack combo as peanut butter and chocolate. But the distinctive Kaplan touch permits adults to giggle at references to Joan Didion while young of us giggle at trek whistle sound results (in a modernization of “Itsy-bitsy Brown Jug,” a song that dates encourage to 1869).
Randy’s fancy of the blues is tangible, his persona is affable, and the outcomes are silly – for all ages – on Shake It and Shatter It, his most up-to-date originate. The educator in Kaplan (a a lot-credentialed teacher) can’t resist giving deep background on the origins of his songs (giving shout-outs to Charlie Patton on the title notice and Blind Blake of “Doing a Stretch”).
Randy is flexible at adapting self-discipline subject for younger listeners. “Doing a Stretch” modified into once before all the pieces about serving time in penal advanced. In this contemporary incarnation, narrator Kaplan does a series of physique-contortion workout routines, accompanied by the aforementioned sound results. Blind Boy Fuller’s “Been Your Dog” comes straight from the pooch’s mouth – with a dogs-voiced verse, to boot. It’s an acceptable song to listen to on a vehicle fling from Contemporary Jersey to Queens – heading for the Lengthy Island Miniature-salvage entry to twin carriageway as you hear it described in song. Household dynamics are investigated in comic part in “From Four Till Late,” as Randy recounts spending weeks alongside with his grandma when his parents would leave on reputedly never-ending trips. And the stripped-down model of the classic “Swinging on A Well-known particular person” gains singing donkeys and fish and a Google-gracious command of Carol Dweck (I did it for you).
My of us had been serious about introducing me to classical and of us song the spend of TUBBY THE TUBA and WOODY GUTHRIE FOR KIDS. Randy follows thru on this template for delta blues, renewing the works of Mississippi John Damage (“Candy Man Blues”) as wisely because the higher-identified John Lee Hooker. Segment of the stress-free is making an are attempting to acquire the contemporary intent (and lyrics) that Kaplan appropriates to salvage all the contrivance in which thru his versions. A six-minute “Itsy-bitsy Brown Jug” closes the sequence with a literal cavalcade of references that require the support of Siri, Alexa, or your marvelous neighborhood student. And yes, an acknowledgement of Mance Lipscomb, who started recording delta blues in the Sixties.
Shake It and Shatter It is a throwback to early Kaplan releases treasure Five Cent Piece, with sparse arrangements showcasing an acoustic guitar and vocals, and a stray harmonica solo offering counterpoint. Listeners salvage colossal aural and leisure fee, plus a silent offering of information about why the delta blues remains so enticing to performers treasure Randy. And why the model aloof has the skill to entrance a recent expertise of listeners.
Shake It and Shatter It is available on Can even 10 from Randy Kaplan’s websites, CDBABY, Apple Tune, and Amazon.
Here is the video for Randy’s song “Crew Reduce”:
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