Wednesday
Jul212010

Review of Gustafer Yellowgold’s Mellow Fever

May 2009

 

Cute artwork and simple animation illustrate 11 original songs in Morgan Taylor's third DVD/CD set about Gustafer Yellowgold, a cone-headed native of the sun who travels to Earth in a sunpod and lands in Minnesota. The illustrations are in wood-style frames, with the words to each song displayed underneath. Taylor's songs are mostly in a soft, mellow rock style, and are formatted for both normal and karaoke play. "Sunpod" tells the story of Gustafer's arrival on Earth. In "Melter Swelter," Gustafer easily melts the winter snow and warms up his friends. Forest Applecrumbie, a pterodactyl who is one of his friends, mourns the loss of his fancy bellbottoms in "Panther Stamps Pants." Gustafer's pet eel, Slim, introduces him to her ocean home in "Underwater Stars." Among the other songs are "Getting in a Treetop," "Sugar Boat," and "Quite Easily Lost" (featuring guest artist Lisa Loeb). A bonus feature, "Looking for Gustafer Yellowgold," documents several sightings of the sun creature in the Minnesota woods and even at a birthday party. An enjoyable musical experience for young children.

Wednesday
Jul212010

March, 2008

‘Have You Never Been Yellow?’ Review

 

In his follow-up to Gustafer Yellowgold’s Wide Wild World (Apple-Eye, 2005), singer/songwriter/illustrator Morgan Taylor offers another glimpse into the world of Gustafer, a son of the Sun living on Earth. Taylor’s vocals are showcased on these ten simple, soft rock tunes. Back vocals add harmony. Instrumentation is spare; guitar with judicious use of percussion and brass instruments embellish each song. Standouts include “The Bluebird Tree” (a song about finding your comfortable place), “The Cactus Calls” (an imagined cowboy adventure), and “Dream in Green” (perfect to teach the color green to preschoolers). Each song opens and closes with its title in a picture frame. Song lyrics appear along the bottom of the picture frame, which is stationary throughout the production. Viewers will enjoy finding the visual puns and plays on clichés. The bright and cheery illustrations are sure to appeal to kids. The feel of animation is achieved by panning around the pictures or moving an item in, around, or through an illustration. The DVD can also be viewed without vocals or with Taylor providing commentary on the songs. The bonus CD includes the songs from the DVD.