OWTK Kindie Music News

22 Memories of Kindiecomm 2014

The first ever Kindiecomm family music conference wrapped this past weekend and overflowed with beautiful moments, big and small, quiet and loud. The nature of conferences is such that every attendee has a different experience, engages in different conversation, and takes away different bits of inspiration and points to ponder from the same speeches.

Here are 22 beautiful personal memories of Kindiecomm 2014 that I’ll carry with me forever.

  1. Listening to WXPN Kids Corner host and Kindiecomm co-founder Kathy O’Connell’s opening remarks on Saturday morning as the eager crowd wiped the sleep out of their eyes with cups of joe in one hand and a bagel in the other. Her humor, passion and honesty during the 20 minute talk set the stage for the entire weekend.
  2. My 20-minute Friday night chat with the dashing and brilliant Tyler Bickford, a talk which touched on Starbucks’ college tuition plan, the state of Oregon’s own progressive idea to help residents attend school, and a reason for optimism that middle America will someday see that a nation which takes care of its people is not something to be feared.
  3. Scheming with Dave Loftin of the Saturday Morning Cereal Bowl about launching a kindie commentary video series, and and then recording a pair of chats with Billy Kelly and The Whirlygigs’ Keith Wasserman. I only wish we managed to do more over the weekend while we were together (Dave lives in Chattanooga, TN) and while all those artists were in my town.
  4. Discussing with many laughs, many a thing with Keith Wasserman, including but not limited to corn starch, Cuban sandwiches, and a fictional journey over many rivers on foot from central PA to central OH.
  5. Having the privilege of hearing the debut performance of Molly Ledford and Billy Kelly’s new project during the industry showcase. I want to hug a tree and curl up with a ‘dumb old stick’ of my own.
  6. Meeting for the first time and speaking with attorney Angela Martinez after the breakout session discussion I was a part of, and quickly realizing that there is a higher level of marketing and cash flow potential in the kindie rock scene, in areas that are not dissimilar to that of a dad blogger. I hope this flash of inspiration will be a 200 level marketing breakout session at Kindiecomm 2015. I hope my memory lasts that long!
  7. Speaking of conversations had immediately after my media cultivation breakout session…meeting Nick Bayard and his sweet, kind, polite and incredibly charming 11-year-old stepson Ukweli.
  8. Speaking of Nick Bayard and his 11-year-old stepson Ukweli, seeing them perform a joyous and harmonious set of music at the industry showcase just as Ukweli’s bedtime was approaching.
  9. Spending quality time with Rebecca Alison of Kids Can Groove and Little Cloud Management, even if she did ditch me with a 1/2 full plate of hummus and feta cheese at 1:30 am in the New Deck Bar.
  10. Discovering that The Pop Ups’ Jason Rabinowitz will become a dad for the 2nd time this fall, welcoming him in advance to the two daughter club, and assuring him that no matter what anyone says, there is nothing to fear, that it’s all beautiful and that the experiences and snide remarks of other parents mean nothing at all.
  11. Sneaking out on the free Kindiecomm boxed lunch for a tasty brunch at St. Declan’s Well with The Deedle Deedle Dees’ Lloyd Miller to watch the first half of Brazil v. Chile.
  12. The Not-Its. I mean, c’mon, those handsome people are always a good time. And they didn’t even melt faces on stage. I could spend days cavorting with those pink & black clad crazies.
  13. Watching Danny from The Not-Its demonstrate his sleeping position on a crowded West Philadelphia sidewalk in the middle of the day.
  14. Late night Shake Shack burgers with Matt Siden, Keith Wasserman, Dave Loftin and his wife. To be fair, a Shake Shack burger and a chocolate caramel milkshake would make this list if eaten alone, but the company WAS lovely.
  15. Meeting the dudes behind two of Portland’s finest kindie ambassadors, Red Yarn and the Pointed Man Band.
  16. Play Date, Zee Avi, Jazzy Ash and The Diggity Dudes at the industry showcase. Four acts that have nothing in common save for being a part of the same big, weird kindie family, and four acts I’d never seen live, but four acts I cannot wait to see live again.
  17. Becoming a believer in the Joanie Leeds live experience. I’m not always floored with the recordings, but she kicks serious ass on stage.
  18. Bearing witness, and somewhat taking part in, a dance-off during the showcase with Amelia Robinson (of Mill’s Trills), Jason Rabinowitz, ‘Peanut’ (who I unfortunately did not properly meet), Jazzy Ash, and someone else who I did meet but cannot remember her name…because I am terrible like that.
  19. Bearing witness to a spontaneous freestyle rap jam between The Alphabet Rockers and Secret Agent 23 Skidoo on the street at 2:30am.
  20. Debating the stickiness, worth, and place of modern kid’s music with much gusto and the intensity of a knife fight until 3:30am with Secret Agent 23 Skidoo and Jack Forman (of Recess Monkey and Sirius XM Kids Place Live).
  21. Catching up with more people than I can remember right now, as I recover from a serious lack of sleep.
  22. Hugs. So many big, tight, meaningful hugs.

And now, scenes from the Kindiecomm 2014 Industry Showcase, where I was:

  • Blown away by Nick Bayard and his step-son Ukweli.
  • Enchanted by Zee Avi who’s CD I didn’t give much thought to because it is all covers, but wow!!! can she reinvent a classic.
  • Cheered up by Play Date, with Bouncing Souls frontman Greg and his wife Shanti.
  • Encouraged to use up my last bit of energy at midnight by The Diggity Dudes who blasted us home.
  • Impressed as always by Recess Monkey who did their Recess Monkey thing and proved to all that they are simply the best.
  • Standing in awe of Molly Ledford and Billy Kelly who joined forces with so much endearing cuteness and pop songwriting mastery.
  • Dazzled by Jazzy Ash who brought New Orleans to West Philly, if only for 15 minutes.
  • (Body) Rocked by the palatable energy of The Alphabet Rockers.
  • Blissing out to the closed-eyed-quiet of The Walkmen’s Walter Martin performing a solo set of songs from his debut We’re All Young Together (plus a new tune about art in Amsterdam).

With 2015 conference dates already announced (March will be here before you know it!), there is every indication that Kindiecomm will continue to evolve (breakout sessions on advanced marketing techniques, brand partnerships and more would be extremely engaging topics and 200 or even 300 level information sharing for vets of the family music scene is needed) for years to come. Make plans to be in Philly in March 2015 to make some beautiful memories of your own.

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