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Groovy Dads for dinnertime dance parties: Meet Will Stroet & Daniel Ingram

Groovy Dads for dinnertime dance parties: Meet Will Stroet & Daniel Ingram

Dinner-prep music is always a discussion in our house and poor Alexa rarely makes it through a full song with request after request thrown her way. When we happen upon a song or an artist we all enjoy it’s magic, at least for the first 17 times the song is on repeat. 

Groovy Dads has been our theme lately and luckily there are two local music-makers we agree on. Will Stroet, of Will’s Jams, got my vote when I heard his duet with Charlotte Diamond, ‘Grandma on the Move.’ Will’s catchy rock ’n’ roll style gets us dancing and we love that many of his songs are bilingual. 

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New on the local Groovy Dads scene is Daniel Ingram, known for his songwriting on My Little Pony. Daniel has created The TreeBees, a loveable trio of colourful characters who sing catchy, adult approved songs about diversity, nature, creativity, and family. ‘I’m a Dinosaur,’ is my personal favourite as I love watching my kids act it out. 

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Daniel has a toddler son and Will is Dad to two school aged daughters so all songs are audience tested at home. I asked Daniel and Will a few questions about the magic of their music and why Dads have a knack for rhythm. Here are their answers: 

Daniel Ingram

What’ it like to test your music on your kids?

Super rewarding! It’s so much fun both as a parent as as a songwriter to see a child respond to music. Whether or not it’s dancing, moving their arms, laughing, smiling, or even singing along depending on their age, it’s a great way to connect across the generation gap. 

What is the secret sauce that makes a song enjoyable for both kids and adults?

It’s a complicated recipe! First and foremost it’s the voices. We don’t default to overly “kiddy” singing voices. Kids respond well to great singing. The next is the instrumentation and arrangements. I use real instruments for much of The Treebees, and arrangements that are simple enough to kids to groove to, but parents can appreciate. Lastly, content! We know kids music is going to be repetitive, that’s how they learn, but I still feel there’s room for content that parents will find charming: simple but clever metaphors, cute rhymes, and fun stories can all be part of successful kids music. 

Best song for a dance party? 

“Do The Kangaroo Hop” is a pretty bopping song! That and “Drums” get my kid going!

Will Stroet

What is it like to test your music on your kids?

I love testing my new songs on my kids and I’ve found as they’ve grown older they’ve developed a more discerning ear. I really have to up my songwriting game to get their approval. During the past year, I have been writing a bunch of new songs in English and French and I’m pleased to say that I have received the thumbs up on most of the ones I hope to record at some point this year. 

What is the secret sauce that makes a song enjoyable for both kids and adults?

See Also

When I write music, I always consider both kids and parents as my audience. My general rule is to try to write songs that are about themes relevant to kids that are upbeat and fun and often include actions to deepen the engagement factor, while also lyrically including wordplay and little hidden jokes that will appeal to parents. I also try to offer a variety of musical styles and top notch musicians in my recordings to really allow the songs to live up to their full potential.

Best song for a dance party?

Definitely my song: “Rock n Roly Guacamole.” 

Where To Listen

Daniel and The Treebees have two new albums featuring 40 songs. Find The Treebees ONE and The Treebees TWO on Spotify. Check out www.thetreebees.com and follow @thetreebess on Instagram  Facebook and Twitter

You can listen to all Will’s music on Spotify, Apple Music, Bandcamp or any digital platform. Check out www.willsjams.com/ for new music coming soon and follow @willsjamsmusic on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.

Will has also launched new online courses, “Wordplay With Will” or “Chanter avec Will.” These arts-integrated courses use music and other activities to support French and English language learning through monthly interactive lessons. 

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