Suzi Shelton wants to be your mom’s cool friend. You know, the one who plans the sleepovers and makes up games and brings her guitar to the cookout so everyone can sing together. On her new CD, HAND IN HAND, Suzi delivers her final children’s music thesis and presents the remaining evidence so listeners can agree – all hail cool mom.
In addition to recording and live performances, Suzi maintains a busy interactive schedule with “Sing With Suzi,” her YouTube channel (15,000 subscribers). And for an even more personal experience, her website lists “Skype With Suzi,” which is a good reason the kids shouldn’t have access to credit cards (or your Venmo account).
Hand in Hand continues the Shelton mix of easy-to-understand lyrics and toe-tapping arrangements. It’s also the rare exception where there is no direct title track. Hand in Hand serves more as an overall theme to the nine songs, from “Put Your Hands in the Air” to CD-closer “We Shall Walk,” written by her daughter, Emma. Instead of simple parental declarations of adoration, Hand in Hand urges kids to learn, grow, develop individual personalities, and embrace what makes them truly special. “Can You Feel the Power” is a preteen-Parkland motivational song:
Live your life with passion and fire
If you don’t feel it now then go get inspired
Don’t wait and don’t hesitate
Hate we can devour, that’s your superpower
Special guests on Hand in Hand include Grammy winner Tim Kubart, Vered Ronen (whose own CD just came out), and Amelia Robinson (Mil’s Trills). But Hand in Hand is more about kid power than star power. A few of the songs, such as “The Grass Is Always Greener” (Tim’s song), skew notably towards toddlers. But current Kids Place Live single “Raindrop” is a definite age-defying earworm. The power of positivity grows in every child and Suzi encourages you to embrace and meet that challenge, hand in hand.
Here is the video for Suzi’s song, “Raindrop”: