New Milk & Cookies Artist: Ralph’s World
Posted on 02/25/2021
This spring, Ralph’s World joins State Theatre New Jersey for Milk & Cookies Online, the storytelling and music series for families! His performance will be available online from now until May 1, 2021.
Ralph Covert is the creator of Ralph’s World, the kids’ indie rock band that wins over children and parents alike. He’s also the vocalist of the indie rock group The Bad Examples, a band with a devoted following in Chicago. How does he approach writing and singing for two different audiences?
Turns out, it’s the same approach—just tweaked a little bit for kids.
When Ralph’s World began producing their first album, Covert recounted to the music magazine Penny Black Music in 2012, their primary goal was to make, first and foremost, a “great album, with great songwriting and great production”— just like any album for adults.
While the lyrics are designed to be family-friendly and resonate with child audiences, the production and songwriting process are the same, regardless of whether it’s an indie rock song for The Bad Examples or a song for a Ralph’s World album. “When I'm writing songs,” Covert explained in a 2007 interview with the kids music site Zooglobble, “my goal is for the song to be all that song can be. I'm trying to shepherd that song into its becoming whatever it's supposed to be.”
Doing so also allows Covert to draw on a wider variety of musical genres and influences. Even punk gets a shoutout in Ralph’s World: “I wanted to write a kids’ punk song, because there are fans that love punk music, and I love punk music,” he explained to Zooglobble. So, on his sixth album Green Gorilla Monster & Me, he recorded an unapologetically punk song called “I Don’t Wanna.” “Energy-wise, emotion-wise, sound-recording-style, chordally, rhythmically, aggressively, it’s as punk as you get”—perfect for both children and their rock-loving parents.
And what about the performances? The pace of a children’s show might be faster than a rock show, Covert said, in order to hold children’s attention. But keeping the audience engaged is a key part of any show: “You’re taking them on a journey,” he said. “You’re taking them to a bunch of different places.”
Your participation is a donation to State Theatre New Jersey’s family programs. Donate What You Can—a minimum donation of $10 gives you access to this Milk & Cookies Show for you and your family, larger donation amounts are greatly appreciated and help support State Theatre’s family programming. We thank you for your support and hope you enjoy Milk & Cookies!
After making your donation, you will receive an email with a link to watch the performance. Watch it right away or save for later. The link we provide you will be active until May 1, 2021. Any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Milk & Cookies Online is supported by Community Access Initiative Sponsor The Provident Bank Foundation.
By Catherine Babikian