LAURA DOHERTY "KIDS IN THE CITY"
The Sound: Folk music for city folks. A warm, familiar sounding record perfect for toddlers and pre-schoolers.
In the Cafeteria, They Sit With: Frances England, Little Miss Ann, John and Mark (of John and Mark's Children's Record).
Best Moments: Doherty's covers of Robert Johnson's "Sweet Home Chicago" and Burt Bacarach's classic "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" are outstanding. I think I prefer her interpretations of these songs more than the originals. The last 15 seconds of "Kitty Cat" is nothing but clapping, a few kids singing along and an adorable meow - it's a lovely ending to a very cute song. "Rockin' at the Zoo", with it's pronounced upright bass and horns, would sound sweet inside a kiddie jazz club - should such a venue exist.
Bonus Thoughts: Watch the video for "Hot Dog" and take a tour of Chicago and Wrigleyville. Warning: you may find yourself salivating at the site of a real Chicago hot dog being constructed - have some munchies nearby.
Okay, Time to Wrap it Up with a Nice Little Bow: There isn't anything on "Kids in the City" that will shock or amaze you. After all, songs about animals, colors and trains aren't exactly going to set the world on fire. Usually, they're not enough to warrant a review here but, and here's the important part, Ms. Doherty spins these kiddie music staples into what essentially amounts to a collection of love songs about her hometown of Chicago. As I mentioned at least a couple times on OWTK over the past few years, there's little I love more than a touching ode to one's abode - David Tobocman's "Home", John Prine's "My Darlin' Hometown", Josh Ritter's "Idaho" - all of 'em gorgeous reflections on what it means to have a place to call your own. With "Kids in the City", Laura Doherty has made an entire album that feels as comfortable as your favorite spot on the sofa, in your favorite place on earth - Home.