Two Double-Header Reviews of Album+Live Show

Within the past few weeks, two local parenting bloggers have (independently of one another) found a way to write about the whole Jungle Gym Jam experience. They first received a review copy of our CD Lollipop Motel and then attended out live show with their families. Both NJ Mommy Blog writer Nicole and Silly Fun Momma blogger Nikki took the time to share that all-around experience of first listening to the record and then taking in the live performance.

Photo by Nicole at

Photo by Nicole at

In Nicole’s case (NJ Mommy Blog), that live show was our Album Release Party/Family Beach Party at the Old Mogul Theatre in Montclair with the full band (plus a horn section!) where we put together an event that included boardwalk style games & food, face painting and crafts.

Then Nikki (Silly Fun Momma) came out to catch an acoustic performance by Amy and me at Palisades Center in West Nyack, NY as part of the mall’s Munchkin Mondays summer family concert series. Nikki’s personal story found elsewhere in her blog is particularly compelling and helpful to other parents. She’s an Afghanistan War vet who considers parenting to be therapy for her case of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Jason and Amy Didner-the acoustic Jungle Gym Jam with Bruce the Jersey Dinosaur puppet

Photo by Nikki at

Both bloggers took great pictures of the respective events; each offered their personal take on how their families enjoyed the experience of listening to the album together and which moments stood out when seeing those same songs performed live.

For Nicole with NJ Mommy Blog, the Jersey Shore beach references were key, tapping into memories both from her own childhood and new memories she’s making with her family today. She writes in her review of the album that “Jason Didner and the Jungle Gym Jam really capture the golden moments of being a carefree kid having a blast at the beach.”

Nikki’s observation in Silly Fun Momma also picked up on the perk of having music the whole family could genuinely enjoy and bond over. “While listening to the album by the pool, with my son, we found ourselves bopping our heads along and giggling to the lyrics.”

In describing the live event experience, Nicole at NJ Mommy Blog showed how our intentions of creating family beach trip moments came across exactly as we’d hoped. “With help from the band and our imaginations, the historic dance hall in Montclair was transformed into a boardwalk scene with music, face painting, crafts, games, and food.” She went on to describe our “fresh, beachy beats” and illustrate in words and pictures her favorite moments from both the live show and album.

Nikki’s write-up about our acoustic live show validated for me that even when you take away the extras – the face painting, crafts and the 8-piece band, the essence of our show is there to be enjoyed by all. “With puppets, diagrams, interactive activities and lively performances, Jungle Gym Jam excites the audience.” That was very gratifying to read, and I love that we’re able to offer both the acoustic duo and full band experience and have them both delight kids and their grown-ups!

Nikki also wrote about the #SummerOfSharing fundraising efforts we’re making for good causes alongside our album sales this summer. In June, for instance we’re sharing 50% of album download proceeds with 5-year-old heart patient Xavier and family. This effort captured a significant amount of her attention in her article.

Both reviewers have also run a CD giveaway in conjunction with their review. Nikki’s giveaway will open to contestants on June 11 and run until June 24 at 11:59 PM when a winner will be selected and announced.

Thanks to both Nicole and Nikki for taking the time to focus their attention on the Lollipop Motel album and then a live Jungle Gym Jam performance and integrate them each into an interesting, insightful review of the whole Jungle Gym Jam experience!

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