Sunday, February 26, 2006

The cat came back

The cat came back. Sandwiches are beautiful, sandwiches are fine. Through a hollow log. Word Bird........Who are you thinking of? If you said Fred Penner, you're right! (ding ding ding! You win!)

Another teacher at my school goes to a church in Burnaby who was hosting two Fred Penner concerts yesterday afternoon. Before the concerts, however, he gave a workshop for parents and teachers about "Honouring the Child." I heard about it and couldn't pass up the opportunity! So, yesterday, I got to meet Fred Penner!!!

I loved his songs growing up. It was him, Raffi, and Charlotte Diamond all the way, baby. But Fred Penner had a TV show called Fred Penner's Place. Remember it? He'd climb through a hollow log into this magical place with puppets and the Word Bird and special guests and lots of fun! At the workshop, he talked about how when he was a kid, he had a secret hiding place in a little grove of trees that whenever he was upset, he'd crawl into. It was a cozy, protected place for him, and special because it was secret, only he knew about it. So when he was asked to do a show, he wanted to create that same kind of place for kids to enjoy the show. Did you ever notice that before he crawled through the hollow log, he'd look over his shoulder to see if anyone had followed him? :) You can view the show opener by clicking here (scroll down a bit and click play when the page opens)

Fred (can I call him Fred? Mr Penner? Nope, it's gonna have to a full meal deal on the name)... Fred Penner talked about his journey and how he ended up doing what he's doing. He told all kinds of great stories from his childhood and how they connected to what he has done in his life. I was really impressed with how purposeful he's been with his career, and how he's captured the meaning of honouring children. Hearing the stories behind a lot of the songs, they have such fabulous messages for children. They're meaningful, not just fluffy. After his talk he opened the floor up to requests and we had a singalong! Squeee! So fun!


Barbara said...

I adore Fred Penner! Great music. My favourite song was, "Sandwiches".

Hillary said...

hee hee! Mine too! I was singing it day yesterday, much to the chagrin of my friends. (Aw well, they know me, that shouldn't surprise them!)

Sandwiches are beautiful, sanwiches are fine, I like sandwiches I eat them all the time, I eat them for my breakfast and I eat them for my lunch, if I had a hundred sanswiches I'd eat them all at once!

Rose said...

And he's from Winnipeg...

AfricaBleu said...

If only I could've met Mr. Rogers (From "Mr. Rogers's Hood," as my little guy used to call it).

The cat came back? That reminds me of one of the songs MY favorite kid group - "Trout Fishing in America" sings - all about:

"Old Miss Johnson, lived all alone, she had an old yellow cat that wouldn't leave home...

She tried to everything she could to make the cat go away, but the cat came back, the very next day, she thought he was a goner but the cat came back 'cause he wouldn't stay away..."

The song goes on the describe the horrible ways Old Miss Johnson tries to get rid of the cat - gives it to a boy to drown, drops it in the butchers hopper, drops it from a baloon - but it won't stay away.

Being a dog person, it is VERY MUCH my kinda song. ;)

Hillary said...

Yeppers, that's the song (more or less)! It's not original to Fred Penner, it's from 1892 or something.

Here's one verse (which he sang for us among multiple comments about "what was I THINKING when I recorded this?!?!" Granted, he recorded it in 1979!)

Now the man around the corner swore he'd kill the cat on sight / So he loaded up a shotgun with nails and dynamite / He waited and he waited for the cat to come along / Ninety seven pieces of the man was all they found


Anonymous said...

Penner is such a dork! but I happen to like that dork they call fred, he was a big part of my childhood, aww the memories.