On April 1, 2016 Frances England will release her fifth family album, Explorer of the World, which encourages families to experience life by connecting more with their surroundings. Prior to making the album, England spent two years observing and capturing the sights and the sounds of her neighborhood and local areas of San Francisco, CA, with a handheld recorder. Some of the sounds were then integrated into many of the songs on the album.
Today I am excited to share a video teaser and audio clip with you for the track “Ballad for a Beatboxer,” which features vocal percussionist Carlos Aguirre.
The song’s arrangement contains England’s soft melodies laced with Aguirre’s hip hop inspired beats. The two flow very well together, and the style is a welcome addition to England’s repertoire, which has steadily expanded into more rootsy, rhythmic territory. Aguirre really infuses the song with so much of what leaves me in awe about beatboxers: The musical landscape they create is borne from what they feel inside their heart and soul. They are the instrument and the musical language they speak is so genuinely unique. England eloquently expresses this sentiment as she sings “And I can feel all the love he puts into those beat, he gives them to the people / He makes the world all his own / Where the music doesn’t stop / And the beat goes…
England and Aguirre have worked together for many years at StageWrite, a nonprofit in San Francisco, CA, that teaches literacy through playwriting workshops. England helps attending kids write songs for their plays and Aguirre helps with the playwriting and expression exercises through beatboxing.
In addition to the video teaser you, you can take a listen to the full track, as well as other tracks from the album through the Soundcloud widget below.
For updates on the new album, new videos and related news, stay in touch with England through her official site, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram, and don’t miss the release of Explorer of the World on April 1, 2016. It’s a stunning, magnificent, hip, inspiring album and I can’t wait to share more of it with you!
Check out my full album review which also includes music videos and family activity suggestions inspired by the album.