We laughed, cried, sang, and danced. My heart was full listening to Heart Parade, the latest album from Canada's own Nick Adams and Taes Leavitt -- better known as the beloved musical duo Splash'N Boots.
Splash'N Boots hit my radar back in the Spring of 2015 when I was a brand-new mother trying to navigate this new way of life. Treehouse TV was quickly morphing into our daily background noise, and every so often a 15-minute clip featuring two brightly-coloured, cheery, energized, incredibly talented artists would pop up on my screen. Even though I was busy with my son, I loved their contagious energy and found myself diving in front of the television to finally catch a glimpse of the name of this band that was playing music to my ears: Splash'N Boots.
"You have got to listen to this album," I told my husband when he got home from work one evening. “It’s kitchen music!”
Growing up on the East Coast of Canada, you quickly learn that a kitchen party is the height of parties -- and here was a band playing songs that were appealing and appropriate for children while also being fun, catchy, and relatable to adults.
"They're playing a show in Grand-falls Windsor next month," I added. "I think we should go!"
We attended that concert as a young family of three. It was one of our first special outings together, and what we experienced was nothing short of magical.
From the moment Splash'N Boots walked on the stage, they make sure you know you're as much a part of the show as they are. We were laughing at Nick reciting an endless list of animal noises suggested by the kids, dancing around clapping our hands in an N'Sync-style BYE, BYE, BYE wave, and belting out the chant from Queen's "We Will Rock You." They interacted with people in the audience, chatting and saying hi to people they remembered from past shows. It was an amazing experience and we didn't want the show to end.
Our love affair for Splash'N Boots was just beginning. Since that very first show, we've attended five more concerts and added two more children to our concert-going crew.
Now that we're in late 2020 and the world has changed so much, we ache for the tradition of our Splash'N Boots concert, but we continue to follow along with them on Instagram and Facebook -- smiling as they bring light and laughter into our home. We jumped for joy when we heard of their most recent album: Heart Parade. It's an entire album of collaborations, featuring everything from folk and country to pop and rock, with a little sprinkle of nostalgia.
Splash'N Boots truly pushed the boundaries of what they can do with this album, delivering partnerships with artists like Sharon and Bram, Brett Kissel, Johnny Reid, and even Alice Cooper -- YES, the Alice Cooper!
So much raw emotion exposed, Heart Parade is collection of songs about love, family, and living life to the fullest. It offers something for everyone and is a catalyst to connect generations; working with artists across different genres and ages was an important part of creating this musical love language.
The first track, Great Day, is a reminder to seize the day with the low, gorgeous gospel vocals of Rebecca Tesfagiorgis. This collaboration offers joyous lyrics in combination with Rebecca’s deep souled and spiritual upbringing. It’s the perfect song to wake up to, a happy way to start the day with love in your heart.
Another Favorite is "Lily Pad Bop" - it will make you dance until you drop! An earthy tune featuring Jill Barber about a frog community working together to lift the spirits of others. A lesson in living, and embracing that sadness is totally normal, but happiness can too be found just beyond the Lilypad.
"Big House" featuring Simon Ward, was incredibly moving for me partnered with memories from all the time locked down at home this year. Loving who you are and embracing your unique qualities, big or small, a house becomes a home with love as its foundation.
I couldn't help shedding a few tears when listening to the track "My Family." "My Family’s made of people I love. Your skin might not all look the same or maybe you have a different last name. My family’s made of people I love", they sing.
Followed by "Big, Big Heart" with Peter Katz, a beautiful song that provokes peaceful and calming tones while tackling those BIG life conversations. Sometimes those big moments can have you feeling scared and vulnerable but there is always a safe place, "Big Big Heart" lends a supportive musical shoulder to cry on.
When Nick went on tour with the Wiggles last year, he and Lauchy teamed up to write a song featuring the word love. The Wiggles had not written the word love into their music up until this point, but with Splash' n Boots being the seasoned "love" experts, they came up with "Big Heart Train" a soothing trip toward love and friendship.
"Little Heart" showcases how limitless a parent's love truly is and of course, "Heart Parade" itself, featuring Alice Cooper an epic chant of love, community, and getting LOUD!
You'll tap your toes, shake your hips, and feel your eyes tear up as Splash'N Boots sing lyrics that touch just so close to home. You should not delay, download "Heart Parade"! It is truly incredible and you'll keep coming back for more -- just as our family has since 2015.