Do you all know Acoustic Rooster yet? We are admittedly late to the game, as the first book in the series, Acoustic Rooster and His Barnyard Band was published in 2011. But, Sleeping Bear Press kindly sent us the newest book in the series, Acoustic Rooster’s Barnyard Boogie Starring Indigo Blume, and it was such a hit with our preschooler that I tracked down the original too, so that we could enjoy both. And, not surprising, she LOVES both of these books and asks for them on repeat. Read on for a bit about each book, as well as the upcoming Acoustic Rooster musical!
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Acoustic Rooster and His Barnyard Band, by Kwame Alexander and illustrated by Tim Bowers, is the story of Acoustic Rooster, a jazz guitarist with a goal of making it big in the music world. When Farmer announces the annual barnyard talent show, through which he hopes to find the farm’s best band, Rooster is determined to find a band so that he can compete. He does find a band and does compete, and though the results aren’t what he hoped, he does find a talent and an enjoyment that will take him places! Alexander has written this in impeccable rhythm and rhyme, but that’s not what stands out about the cleverness of the story… Alexander has also managed to base his barnyard musicians on real-life musicians, such as Duck Ellington and Mules Davis! Young readers can learn about these famous musicians, as well as some of their songs, various musical instruments, and the history of jazz (all covered in more detail in the backmatter).
Acoustic Rooster and his band (this time starring Dairy Parton, which is almost amazing enough to make me love this book solely based on that!) are back in Acoustic Rooster’s Barnyard Boogie Starring Indigo Blume , but they take backstage to Indigo (from another Alexander book, Indigo Blume and the Garden City) herself. Indigo finds herself overcome by nerves the day before she is supposed to sing at the Garden City Community Festival, and that night, dreams a very strange dream… Which takes her inside her favorite book — you guessed it, Acoustic Rooster and His Barnyard Boogie! When Acoustic Rooster’s farm is torn apart by a “hurritrain” (which makes our five-year-old crack up every time we read it), Indigo and the animals decide to have a fundraiser concert to raise money to rebuild. But, when Dairy Parton loses her voice, will Indigo find the courage she needs to step in and sing in her place?
And did you know there’s an Acoustic Rooster musical, which will also star Indigo Blume, coming to the Kennedy Center in Fall 2021? I’m secretly kind of hoping we’re all still locked down and they livestream it somewhere so that those of us not in NYC can enjoy it, too!