February 20, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Pick of the Day: Ozomatli Presents OzoKids (CD)

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CD cover of Ozo music group- chalk and sidewalkOzomatli Presents OzoKids. CD. approx. 37 min. Hornblow Group/Megaforce Records. 2012. ISBN unavail. $11.98.
PreS-Gr 3–The Grammy award-winning Los Angeles-based Latin fusion group, Ozomatli, continues to defy being pigeon-holed. Never afraid to try new things, they accepted a challenge from PBS television to shed gang-violence and explicit lyrics and record several education-focused songs. Their new album is aimed at youngsters yet maintains a gritty, urban edge that should have wide appeal. Fusing Latino, hip-hop, reggae, techno pop, and rock, these 14 original tunes will teach youngsters and please grownups, too. The sophisticated and engaging arrangements feature a wide variety of musical styles and instrumentation. “Trees” explains what’s necessary for a tree to grow. “Germs” talks about good and bad germs. “Exercise” espouses its importance and various forms. “Water” lists the many forms it takes. “Pirana” encourages facing fears. Among the catchy numbers are “Moose on the Loose” (a techno rap), “Balloon Fest” (a cha-cha), “Like It’s Your Birthday,” “Let’s Go to the Movies” (features a strong percussion beat), “Spelling” (a fusion-infused spelling lesson), and “Changito” (a high-octane song sure to get kids up and moving).  Rock on, Ozo!–Stephanie Bange, Wright State University, Dayton, OH