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Monday, March 16, 2009

Review: Pat Flanakin - In The Land Of Make Believe

Pat Flanakin - In The Land Of Make Believe
2003, Pat Flanakin

Pat Flanakin is a singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who often gets compared to James Taylor (their voices are somewhat similar). Flanakin has over 400 songs to his credit and has been playing both solo and in bands most of his life. His children's album, In The Land Of Make Believe, was released in 2003 and is flavored primarily by pop and country styles. Full of bouncy, upbeat music and Flanakin's understated vocals, this is a great listen for the younger set.

In The Land Of Make Believe has an almost surreal feel to it. Flanakin creates music with a child-like wonder that can be so difficult to capture while still appealing to adult listeners as well. The songs speak to young listeners without ever speaking down. Flanakin is a top-notch songwriter, crafting sweet and sincere melodies in uplifting songs and delivering them all with the minimalist nature practiced by the likes of James Taylor, Jim Croce and Harry Nilsson. All I Want To Be Is Tall perfectly captures the desire of children to grow up quickly than parents may want them to, and Bumblin' Billy will have the little ones (and their folks) dancing all over the room. Nonsense is very memorable, and Rumble Fish is a treat with young April Anyse on lead vocals. Flanakin even gets a little early Rock N Bop sound in on Jammy Jammin' Time.
In The Land Of Make Believe is the sort of album that makes children's eyes light up, and the parents will dig it too. Pat Flanakin comes across as slightly reserved on CD, ala Raffi, although I suspect he's a bit more dynamic in person. This is a definite find in the children's music category; I highly recommend it.

Rating: 4 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about Pat Flanakin at You can purchase a copy of In The Land Of Make Believe through CDBaby. Radiohead

1 comment:

Stella said...

You are so talented, and have the wonders of Joy to assist in getting your music heard. And yes, you are "dynamic in person"!!
Your friend,