Being a kid can make you want to scream. Or bounce up and down. Or bang your head (into a pillow, let’s not get carried away here). Jumpin’ Jamie (Jamie Theurich) knows how your kids feel and conveys their sentiments with the hard-charging, power pop tunes on his latest collection, “Never Mind the Blocks, Here’s Jumpin’ Jamie.” And yes, bonus points if you think “That cover looks familiar.”
The album roars to a start with an audio clip of esteemed teen influencer Greta Thunberg, leading into “Greta Says,” which sets the tone for fun and games with almond milk, cookies, and enlightenment, with a chorus of “Wake up, stop stealing our future! We haven’t enough time! The planet’s on the line!” The following track, “I Don’t Wanna Dance” kicks out the jams for individuality and not being ashamed of how the music makes you move.
As an activist, Jamie wears many hats. The country-flavored “Same As You And Me” is about how cow’s milk is for cows and there are plenty of dairy-free alternatives. I defy you to stand still during the straight-out raving “Honesty Is the Best Policy.” He channels Devo and Men Without Hats on “Stand Up,” quoting some Patti Smith “People Have The Power” at the end of the song. And “Whistleblower” indirectly addresses current Washington, DC
When something isn’t right, blow that whistle blow
Let it out and fight the good fight, blow that whistle blow
You should just know there are consequences, blow that whistle blow
When you let it out, it’s the only defenses, blow that whistle blow
Jamie continues the trend of promoting female role models. Joanie Leeds celebrated Ruth Bader Ginsburg on her 2020 release, “All the Ladies.” Jamie sings the story of “Susan B. Anthony” and the women’s voting suffragette movement. A big booster of free thinking and social justice, Jamie channels the rage of his punk and hard rock role models into messages of affirmation and personal growth. Kids will like Jumpin’ Jamie because the music fun and loud and they can sing the hooks. There’s an underlying dynamism that propels “Never Mind the Blocks” to unanticipated, spirited heights. You’re gonna rock out with your juice box out.
Here is the video for the debut single, “I Don’t Wanna Dance”: