(P) and ©1999 Round River Records
"Harley's audiences are families, but it's hard to tell who enjoys him more - parents or children. His material works at both levels?" (Los Angeles Times)
Bill Harley's stuff is awesome. It has quickly become my kids' favorite thing for a road trip. (Ages 13, 11 and 9)
Great stories that recount Bill's exploits as a youth, which both young and old can relate to.
My kids fade away and lose interest in the standard "Books On Tape" - that run for five hours. Harley's stuff is broken up into little 15 minute stories, songs, etc., that leave you waiting for the next one.
Now, before every road trip, my kids ask if I've gotten any new Bill Harley for the ride.
Bill Harley has an amazing knack for capturing the flavor of childhood and family interactions. I have a few of his albums-- some, like this one, are mostly stories ("Dinosaurs Never Say Please" and "Grownups are Strange" are two others). Others are mostly songs ("There's a Pea on My Plate" and "Big Big World"). Some of the songs are priceless (There's a Pea on My Plate), but overall I like the story albums better. My 8-year-old daughter adores them-- I am occasionally chagrined at some of the lines she picks up to use against me, but they are all G-rated and hilarious enough to make up for it. "The Race Down Mammoth Hill" on this album had me in tears from laughing so hard. Highly reccommended!
Bill Harley is a wonderful storyteller, and this collection is my favorite. The stories in this collection are full of humor, suspense, and sweet innocence (in a messy kid kind of way). The storytelling performance could not be better. His use of voice performance techniques - pacing, pitch, pauses, tone, volume, etc. . . are absolutely delightful to the ear.
No offense....but with a 6 hour car trip I was counting on this recording to keep my 5.5 and 2.5 year olds occupied. It worked. They were very entertained and enjoyed the narrative stories and song! Besides what 5.5 year old boy DOESN'T love a little gross out humor.
My daughters, 9 & 5 at the time, listened to this almost every night for 3 months at bedtime and occasionally on the weekends during the day too. It was good for lots of giggles and there was no fighting at bedtime about "I don't like that" which often occurred before we got "The Battle of the Mad Scientists". My husband and I also like listening to it.
Bill Harley has become one of our favorites, we really enjoy having this title and the others that we have. Very clever stories that Mommy and Daddy will like listening to as well as kiddos.
I subsitute teach in seven rural school districts. Battle of the Mad Scientists is one of my "secret weapons" to reward good behavior. Kindergarten through 8th grade LOVE Bill and all of his stories and songs. My own middle-school child has been a Bill Harley fan for years, and his work is our favorite entertainment on long car rides.
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