Diggin The Adventures of Fredi and her Lilypad Band
In January I had a lovely right up in Hot House Magazine from Elzy Kolb.
Here is the Article if you were not able to get a copy of Hot House…
One Door Opens
A lifelong appreciation for music usually begins with early exposure, and Marsha Heydt is doing all she can to give youngsters a jumpstart. A teaching artist in New York City for 20 years, this saxophonist, composer and author saw that most children don’t get a grassroots level of exposure to music in school and resolved to do something about it. “People don’t know about music; they do not know what a saxophone is. But children get excited when they see instruments and think they might want to play,” Heydt points out. “People think music is just for fun, for recess time. But teaching someone to play music has a whole grab bag of benefits; they get confident, discover things, build joy, learn to work in community, socialize, work together. These are all tools to being successful in life.” To present music basics to five- to eight-year-old readers, Heydt has written a new book, The Adventures of Fredi and Her Lilypad Band. Its colorfully illustrated characters—all frogs—introduce musical instruments and explain how each generates sound. The accompanying workbook, Connect the Dots with Fredi, includes age-appropriate information about science, culture and related topics. Since many schools don’t devote much time to music, Heydt designed the books to work in other situations, like science and math classes. “There’s a layering of use, so the book can cross over into other classes. And it has classroom ideas for doing rhythm exercises, body percussion, hand percussion, playing recorder or other instruments and improvising. You can use it on many levels,” Heydt explains. Lest you think the adventures of Fredi and friends are all work and no play, the book includes puzzles, games and instructions for dancing the cha cha. The idea of creating the book has been percolating in Heydt’s mind for a while, so much so that her most recent CD, Diggin’ the Day (BluJazz), includes an original tune called “Fredi’s Cha Cha,” inspired by the title character. Her goal is to produce a series of publications for kids and, ultimately, a cartoon. Heydt plans to play “Fredi’s Cha Cha” at an informal book release celebration at the family-friendly brunch at Garage on Jan. 3 where listeners can count on the saxophonist to serve up some originals along with standards by Thelonious Monk, Horace Silver, Herbie Hancock and even some Stevie Wonder. As excited as she is about the release of The Adventures of Fredi and Her Lilypad Band, Heydt is saddened that Jan. 3 is also the swan song for Garage, where she’s often performed over the past decade. She’s planning on incorporating the classic “Blue Skies” into her set, keeping an optimistic eye on the future and sending best wishes to everyone in Garage’s extended family.
I appreciate the energy that Elzy took to write about me. I am very grateful.