Julia Plaut - God's Wonderful World

Monday 1st February 1999
Julia Plaut - God's Wonderful World
Julia Plaut - God's Wonderful World

STYLE: Childrens
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 1647-22490
LABEL: Kingsway KMCD939
RRP: £10.76

Reviewed by Trevor Kirk

A first for me, this one – I’ve never reviewed an album aimed at pre-school kids before, and I was pleasantly surprised, having been expecting something totally moronic and utterly cringeworthy. Julia Plaut is Australian by birth, a professional classical musician who’s toured the world with “early music” orchestras. Her forte (pun intended) is music and movement for the under-fives, and this album is a reissue of a cassette only release from 1995, with extra tracks added, and the actions to all the songs included in the sleevenotes. There are several musical reasons why this works for me; the arrangements are in various styles and full of proper instruments (flute, bassoon, saxophone, violin, cello, marimba, etc.) instead of el cheapo programmed keyboards, and instead of a continuous diet of squeaky-voiced kids, several grown-ups get in on the vocals. “Jesus Is My Friend” has a doo-wop bass man backing the child’s solo; “Jesus’ Love Is Very Wonderful” could’ve come off a Ben Castle album, and “Jesus Loves Me This I Know” (yep, the old William Bradbury Sunday School song), is given the full late night jazz treatment, and lasts over five minutes. Even when the youngsters are centre-stage with their jolly songs, there was no danger of me being driven up the wall, as Julia can write a fun song that doesn’t insult anyone’s intelligence, not least the singers, who sound as though they’re having a whale of a time, adults and kids alike. Kingsway should be congratulated on this release – it’s good to see a talented musician such a Julia making an effort to give our tinies good quality stuff.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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