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Raffi Cavoukian,‘Baby Beluga’
 
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MessagePosté le: Sam 19 Nov 2016 - 11:30
MessageSujet du message: Raffi Cavoukian,‘Baby Beluga’
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Raffi Cavoukian,‘Baby Beluga’






‘Baby Beluga’ and more: Raffi brings his kid-friendly tunes to Seattle

Raffi Cavoukian, once called “the most popular children’s singer in the English-speaking world,” will play at the Moore Theatre on Nov. 20.



Seattle Times music critic

Back when my daughters were quite small, Christmas wasn’t Christmas without the gentle, lilting voice of Canadian singer-songwriter Raffi, whose “Must Be Santa,” “Up on the House-Top” and “Le Petit Papa Noel” were as indispensable to the holidays as “Deck the Halls” and “Good King Wenceslas.”

Our household was not unusual. Raffi Cavoukian — who appears at the Moore Theatre on Sunday (Nov. 20) — has sold more than 15 million albums over his 40-plus-year career and was once called by The Washington Post “the most popular children’s singer in the English-speaking world.”

The kids who grew up with him are still loyal.
CONCERT PREVIEW
Raffi

1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20, Moore Theatre, 1932 Second Ave., Seattle; $30 and $57.50 (800-745-3000 or stgpresents.org).

“The people I’m seeing at the shows these days are what we call Beluga grads,” said the singer in a phone interview, referring to “Baby Beluga,” one of his most popular songs. “They are between 20 and 40 and bringing their own kids with them.”
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The next-generation fans may well have learned “Baby Beluga” — about a gamboling whale — or “Down by the Bay” — a template of innocent fantasy — in preschool or day camp, where Raffi’s songs are as ubiquitous as Woody Guthrie’s “Riding in My Car” or the traditional “If You’re Happy and You Know It (Clap Your Hands).”

Landing a song in that canon is no mean feat.

“You have to know your audience,” said Cavoukian, modestly interspersing his comments with chuckles. “They respond well to humor. As a social group of budding beings, I think they enjoy that most of all. But it’s not just the things that make up a great song — like repetition, offered in playful way — but that they get that there’s a friend singing, not someone who’s trying to didactically teach them something.”

Cavoukian, 68, did not start out as a children’s entertainer. As he details in his fascinating memoir, “The Life of a Children’s Troubadour,” he was a coffeehouse folk singer, but a chance invitation in the early ’70s to sing at his mother-in-law’s Toronto preschool changed his life.

Back then, he didn’t even know the words to “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” Of Armenian heritage (his given name really is Raffi, after a famous Armenian writer), he spent his first 10 years in Cairo, Egypt. But children, he found, were his métier. In 1976, he recorded “Singable Songs for the Very Young” and never looked back.

Raffi albums from the start were characterized by high production values, musical variety and a refusal to talk down to kids. On his recent one, “Love Bug” (2014), a Caribbean cadence drives “To the Park,” and a South African rhythm percolates under “Turn This World Around,” an anthem honoring Nelson Mandela.

Though Cavoukian’s child’s-eye-level outlook is often playful, it is driven by quite seriously activist ideas he calls “child honouring.” In 2006, he asked the Dalai Lama to write a foreword to an anthology on the subject.

“His answer came through on a fax,” recalled Cavoukian. “You saw the insignia first, then: ‘I agree entirely with Raffi Cavoukian.’ Pretty good opening.”

In 2010, Cavoukian launched the Centre for Child Honouring on Salt Spring Island, one of British Columbia’s Gulf Islands, where he now lives.

Since he lives so close to Seattle, it is perhaps no accident that the Emerald City has been the site of two important relaunches — his first stop on a 1992 return to touring and the third, in 2012.

“Seattle seems to be bookends for certain stages of my career,” he said.

But whether he’s on stage or off, “Up on the House-Top” has always wafted through the air when the holidays roll around.
Paul de Barros: 206-464-3247; pdebarros@seattletimes.com; or follow him on Twitter @pdebarros


Paul de BarrosBy

http://www.seattletimes.com/entertainment/music/baby-beluga-and-more-raffi-brings-his-kid-friendly-tunes-to-seattle/




https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClahmTkuZZ3VMrBxnOZ1NgA/videos


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MessagePosté le: Sam 19 Nov 2016 - 11:30
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