In 2006, with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, I released a CD of stories set to music called "Miracles, Kings, & Banana Peels." The response and feedback have been tremendous. If you would like to purchase a CD and/or hear a sample, you can follow this link: http://cdbaby.com/cd/jamesfunnyhat.
"Miracles, Kings, & Banana Peels" is a fresh and entertaining approach to the ancient art of storytelling. These seven original tales will captivate children of all ages with wry humour, unexpected twists, and quirky yet endearing characters. An evocative musical score composed for each piece and a beautiful 20 page illustration booklet create a compelling listening experience that will be played over and over again.
Ride the Magic Carpet of Storytelling on an adventure of the imagination! We'll go on a mountain trek to discover the mystery of the Temple of Miracles, and down a jungle path where two stubborn kings stand off. We'll fly back in time to watch the genius artist, Lorenzo, make a statue, and forward to the present where a miserable grouch has a brilliant plan to become happy. We'll meet the plucky Princess Karina, who may be more valiant than the knights who are supposed to save her. We'll see how a 6-year old re-invents the circus, and how a peasant girl's protest reveals the secret of the mighty King Bold.
"My son won't stop listening to it. He is trying to figure out which instruments go with which characters. He wanted to bring it to his daycare to show all his classmates"
"My Kindergarten class want to listen to it constantly"
"My twins find the stories compelling and so do we."
"Everything about it is amazing, from the storytelling to the illustrations, to the music. It will be famous!"
"Anand LOVES LOVES LOVES the CD and the beautiful little booklet...He listens to it, all the way through, probably about three times a day. He has his favorites, though they keep changing. He started out OBSESSED with the Temple of Miracles, but his overall favorite is story number 2, the one about Princess Karina. He's pretty much memorized that one, and yells out HAH! at the appropriate times, and sometimes mimes catching the apple slices as they fall. And he LOVES LOVES LOVES the drawings, and insists on having the booklet and CD case on his snack table as he listens to the CD - the whole story ritual often goes along with his snack.
James Funnyhat is a lively and captivating story teller and he's got himself a big fan in Anand."
Review from City Parent Magazine Arts & Entertainment
James Funnyhat: Miracles, Kings, & Banana Peels (World Play Theatre) -- Most of the seven tales on this CD have familiar settings (long-ago kingdoms populated by princesses, an old-fashioned circus) and a common-sense underlying lesson (hold onto your dreams, don't be a bad leader, optimism leads to happier life). But James Patterson -- who goes by Funnyhat because that's what he wears at Toronto schools, daycares and parties when he performs -- delivers his classic parables with a fresh flair. The background sounds and music provide just the right atmosphere and punctuation to the stories. Patterson's got great vocal control and does voices just uniquely enough to add variety without being too showy. And the stories themselves are written in a simple style with clever plotlines that pull you in and keep you listening until each tale wraps up. Visit worldplaytheatre.com to find out how to purchase the CD. - D.P.
Review from CD Baby
Put simply, James Funnyhat presents kids' storytelling at its best. With a remarkably clever and entertaining approach to storytelling in conversation with a fresh, expressive and creative musical score which responds to the plot and characters throughout, these seven original tales will keep kids and their parents fully engaged. Employing humor and playfulness, the mix of quirky and endearing characters, surprises and fun musical interludes makes Miracles, Kings, & Banana Peels one of the best storytelling albums we've seen yet.
A copy of "Miracles, Kings, & Banana Peels" can make a great loot bag. Not only is it a beautifully packaged CD and storybook that your guests will listen to over and over again, it is also a memento of the event, and a labour-saver for you! There are price breaks available depending on how many you buy. Please call for details.
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