The Carolinas are just one region of the United Stated where independently produced children's music has moved to the forefront of the genre. Here are a few of the best kids' performers from North and South Carolina.
Columbia, South Carolina's Lunch Money is a three-piece band led by Molly Ledford, who also sings with grownup band The Verna Cannon. Bassist J.P. Stephens and drummer Jay Barry, also a member of The Verna Cannon, contribute to Lunch Money's simple, catchy, and fun tunes about tricycles, rhythm, and roller coasters. Their debut CD, Silly Reflection, is perfect for preschoolers and kids in the early elementary grades.
Joel Sullivan, aka Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, has created what may be the finest example of kidhop to date, certainly one of the best kids' albums of 2008. One of the leaders of the Asheville, North Carolina, hip hop scene, Sullivan uses his skills as an MC and his expertise as a producer to make quality rap songs about dragons, self-confidence, a banjo-playing grasshopper, and friendship. Great kid-friendly hip hop for the 6 - to 10-year-old crowd.
Chuck Folds (Ben Folds' younger brother) and bandmate Steve Williard took a break from performing in their grownup band Rubberband in and around Greensboro, North Carolina, to form Big Band Boom with drummer Eddie Walker. Their first album, B3, is full of funky, poppy, and silly songs about siblings, under-the-bed monsters, and dancing. Preschoolers and early elementary kids will love it.