There are our childhood favorites from Shel Silverstein and Maurice Sendak, and classics like Goodnight Moon (along with parody book Goodnight Keith Moon, that was a hilarious gift from friends), but we're also always looking for new contemporary favorites to share with the baby. I Went For A Walk is one of these new favorites.
The product of a collaboration between writer/musician Shanti Wintergate and her husband, Bouncing Souls frontman Gregory Attonito, I Went For A Walk is the story of going for a walk that doesn't end there. The walk goes all around the world, and then on into the sky, through the solar systems and onto the mythical places of Moove and IZ. It's a bit silly, a bit Seussian, and a lot of fun.
And without giving away too much of a spoiler, I'll mention that the story wraps up with a simple mantra:
Always LISTEN to your HEART!
Always BELIEVE in YOURSELF!
It's a mantra that speaks to children and punks alike, and there might lie the the idea that bridges the gap between the two.
The fact that the story itself is a journey parallels its creation. The story of creating I Went For A Walk is one as lush and rich as the story itself.
It begins with Wintergate in the Rose Cafe in Venice, CA, where she was having a snack. As she describes it, “I was sitting there when this little poem just had to come out!” So she penned the first few lines to what would become I Went For A Walk.
Her lines are fun, full of the silliness that appeals to little ones, and it's a fun read for mom and dad. It's lyrical, with the flow that comes from someone skilled with song lyrics, and magical, from someone with a vivid imagination.
The story's creation happened quickly, but finding the right artwork was a quest, that lead her to Bouncing Souls frontman Attonito, their marriage and Attonito's quest to create the right artwork.
This quest went along with his personal journey with Bouncing Souls, visiting places around the world on tour, where he carried Wintergate's story, a sketchbook and a bunch of paint pens. His illustrations are rich and varied, tempered by experiences on the road. They pop to life with youthful exuberance and bold colors, with a simplicity that will appeal to little eyes.
Just like parents enjoy playing punk rock kids' music for their children from the likes of Mike Park and Billy Jackfish, punk rock parents are going to enjoy sharing I Went For A Walk with their little ones, not just for its fun whimsical story and lush illustrations, but also with an eye that somewhere down the road they'll be able to fire up something like The Gold Album and say, "You know what? the guy singing "The Pizza Song" is the same guy who drew all the pictures in that book we read together."
The journey that created I Went For A Walk was a long one, and just like the story itself, it was created from adventures had while Attonito was out and about exploring the world. And just like the best adventures, it doesn't end here. Attonito and Wintergate are continuing their creative process with the children's music group Play Date, with an expected full-length release entitled Imagination due out in August of 2012. Hopefully their collaborations will be many, with more smart entertainment for children that shies away from bad pop and merchandise over-exposure.