The Children’s Music Network is honored and grateful for the support of our wonderful Business Sponsors and Non-Profit Partners. This series is meant to shed a little more light on what they do. Today’s partner is Kathy Byers.
1. What is your mission?
I want to keep writing songs from the perspective of children themselves, creating music that plays out and speaks their natural response to what they see, feel, hear and openly express growing up.
2. How do you apply it practically?
Lyrics come from listening and learning together. The sensation of a child fantasizing “I’m flying!” or always asking “Why?” leads into songwriting. Like the song Why Do Turtles Cross the Road? from the CD; One Earth So Green and Round (Co-written with Lydia Adams Davis). We researched North American Turtles, and learned more than any of us knew about the nesting cycle of a turtle simply following the scent of a pond trying to cross roads, highways or streets only to lay eggs safely in an underground nest.
3. Why did you choose to partner with CMN?
The Children’s Music Network is the best international resource for teachers, performers and songwriters who are truly dedicated to their work with and for children.
4. What song from your own childhood do you still sing regularly?
A lot of folk songs will never leave my memory, since I grew up learning lots of Irish and traditional ballads with my large, extended family. The Water Is Wide (Scottish, 1600’s) comes to mind. Also, songs my father sang to me with my ear to his chest with his loving baritone voice like Jamaica Farewell by Irving Burgee and Sloop John B by The Beach Boys. For children, I guess, a cover song that sticks is “It’s a Small World” by the Sherman Brothers. (It is argued that this song is the single most performed and most translated piece of music on earth. Go figure, Wikipedia.)
5. What is your official dance move?
For most of us, it’s hard to dance and sing with a guitar in hand…and, for me, dancing itself alone does not come naturally. When I’m teaching or performing with kids, I keep good rhythm, watch them move, sometimes choose a leader and let them choose their own expressive choreography.
To learn more about Kathy and listen to her music, click here.