If you're a parent, you've probably been to various music groups from rhyme time at the library to sing along nursery rhymes at organised music groups. I'd be surprised if you don't have a few well listened to CDs in your car with Baa Baa Black Sheep and The Wheels On The Bus driving you crazy.
The music Nick Cope has written and performs for children is different. He writes his own catchy tunes which have both children and their parents tapping their feet and joining in.
Quirky, fun and endearing, alot like Nick himself, his songs range from fun to important lessons like saying thank you very much. I love the one about the dog that swallows some soap. Only the other day, my toddler was singing away happily about his socks, another of Nick's fun songs.
Nick is based in Oxford and if you live in the area then you're lucky enough to to join his music sessions in various locations across the city. Here's a list of where you can see him for Early Years Music Sessions. The cost is very reasonable at £3 for a child or £5 for a family. Check Nick's website for further details or to check on any changes to schedules.
Monday 11-12 Fusion Arts, Princess St, Oxford Tuesday 11-12 Trinity Church, Abingdon Conduit Thursday 10:45 - 11.45 Botley Baptist Church and then at the NOA Community Centre in Summertown 1:15 - 2:15 Friday 10:45 - 11:45 St Albans Church Hall, East Oxford 2nd Saturday each month 10:30 - 11:30 at the Story Museum
At one of his sessions, you'll see a group of transfixed children. Some might be up and dancing, other clapping along and there are always the die hard fans. These are the kids who copy everything Nick is doing. They play their imaginary guitars while taping a foot on their pretend guitar case. Often, a friendly little caterpillar or monkey finger puppet will appear from behind Nick's guitar to entertain and generate screams of delight.
Nick has previously performed at the Edinburgh Festival and also makes once off appearances. Rumour has it he will appear at this years Wood Festival and he'll be at Hull Truck Theatre on 11th February playing at 11am and 2pm.
If you're further afield, then you don't need to miss out. Nick's website allows you to buy CDs and you can also preview some songs with lovely animations by Burt Cope. You can also purchase through Amazon. Nick currently has three CDs and I have favourites on all three so it's difficult to recommend just one. The first CD 'What Colour is Your T-shirt' kicks off with 'As I lie here in my bed' both a restful and upbeat song. His second CD, 'My Socks' is also crammed full of great songs. 'Why is the Sky Blue?' is his latest album with wobbly teeth, a crazy dinner lady and a snowman. Coming soon is also a story and song book.
Nick is obviously skilled at writing and performing and definitely more than a step above your usual children's music performer. Nick Cope was the front man to Indie group Candyskins, contemporaries of Radiohead and Supergrass. Children are probably the most difficult of all critics as they won't pretend to like something unless they really do. Nick uses his professionalism and skills to really engage with his audience both young and old.
Listening to one of his CDs on a car journey, I've often found myself still singing along, long after my kids have fallen asleep. What's your favourite song?
Those days are long gone for me and mine. I still remember listening to Roald Dahl's Revolting Rhymes and the other one (I forget what it's called) where he pastiches fairy tales. I'll never forget hearing how Red Riding Hood pulled a pistol from her knickers...