Children's Librarian / Musician Joel Caithamer continues to stay really really busy between his full-time job at the library and writing songs. He and his band filmed a live concert at public television studio, CET in Cincinnati this past February. The performance, entitled, Joel's Psychedelic Sock Sessions is available on DVD. The Biggest Everything in the World is definitely Joel's heaviest recording to date. Overdriven guitars, torso-pounding drums and of course that good old face-melting harmonica playing by Kenny Cowden make this twelve song effort tough to beat! Check out Back in Black era, Hug Tight Sticky Glue or the stone cold honky tonkin' feel of Old Hygiene. This collection of songs will put your car stereo to the test. Give it plenty of bass, a splash of treble and crank that mother up! Joel is not responsible for cracks in your windshield that will occur while listening at high volumes. Buy this now! (Review from School Library Journal 1/09) On his third album, Kentucky children's librarian Joel Caithamer sings 12 rock and country songs, some of which fuse the two styles. Several of them tell short stories, accompanied by guitars, keyboard, drums, harmonica, and percussion. In 'Chicken Sandwich,' a hungry child heads for the henhouse for some chicken. The 'Mekong Catfish' is the largest, oldest fish in the river. A young man of eight eschews bathing in 'Old Hygiene.' Caithamer also performs a wonderful cover of Johnny Cash's hit, 'I've Been Everywhere.' Among the other songs are 'Feeling Science Fiction,' 'Guitar Car,' 'Strange Foodstuff,' and 'Under the Bed.' A fun album by a talented performer-Beverly Bixler, San Antonio Public Library, TX (Review from Kids Music That Rocks) Wow! Two of the best kids' albums of 2008 in one post! Convenient!! Northern Kentucky's most rockin' librarian delivers the rock and roll goods again with his third CD for kids, The Biggest Everything in the World. Caithamer and band will make you laugh and want to turn up the stereo to 11, as Jason Erickson's guitar, Kenny Cowden's harmonica, Jim Morris' organ, and Brian Baverman's drums blast from the speakers on songs about the school custodian, a metal-eating kid, a Mekong giant catfish, farmer tans, and guitar cars. Dig the searing rocker (and really weird song) 'Hug Tight Sticky Glue,' and the awesome cover of Geoff Mack's 'I've Been Everywhere,' complete with ACDC coda. Warren Truitt - Kids Music That Rocks (Aug 22, 2008) (Review from the blog, Saints and Spinners) Sometime after I interviewed librarian and performer Joel Caithamer for this blog, Joel kindly sent me a copy of his new album, The Biggest Everything in the World.* While it's easy to fall back onto the usual comparisons with Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash, there's no denying that infectious rockabilly sound. Whether the songs are about midnight munchies ("Chicken Sandwich") or changing into a robot ("Feeling Science Fiction") Joel Caithamer's lyrics have child-appeal served up with lots of electric guitar and backbeat. My favorite songs are 'Strange Foodstuff' and the punchy "Mekong Catfish": Lost an eye in a fight with a cousin from Japan Got a fishing hook collection and a mug to beat the band Someone grabbed his tail on a tourist expedition But he tipped the pontoon over when he made a split decision It's pure coincidence that the last song, 'Under the Bed,' was released the same year as 'Under My Bed,' by Recess Monkey. They are two very different songs (both good!) employing one of the enduring themes of childhood.** As Eric Herman pointed out to me last summer, how many different musicians have sung about 'ants in your pants?' Here is the link to listen to song snippets at CDBaby: The Biggest Everything in the World I've decided that a double-billed concert of Joel Caithamer and Johnny Bregar is definitely on my wish-list. Then again, I'd like to see an entire weekend festival concert series made up of really good but not overly-famous performers for children. Does anyone have any ideas of what to call this festival? Please exclude the prefixes/suffixes "Fest" "Looza" and "Stock" from your answers. (Yes, I know I just ruined someone's fun.) *Disclaimer: I only review CDs I like. **Unfortunately, it's also a continual theme of adulthood, what with those scary, scary dust-bunnies and wretched 'presents' the cats leave behind. Posted by Alkelda the Gleeful at 12:06 AM Labels: children's music October 2008.