The Funky Mamas
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The Funky Mamas

Guelph, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 1995 | INDIE

Guelph, Ontario, Canada | INDIE
Established on Jan, 1995
Band Folk Acoustic

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Mar
24
The Funky Mamas @ John McCrae Public School

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Aug
12
The Funky Mamas @ Blue Skies Music Festival

Clarendon, Ontario, Canada

Clarendon, Ontario, Canada

Jun
17
The Funky Mamas @ Tiffany Street Porch Fest

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Jan
21
The Funky Mamas @ Toronto Public Library - Fairview Library

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Jan
21
The Funky Mamas @ Toronto Public Library - Barbara Frum Library

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Jul
23
The Funky Mamas @ Hillside Festival Of Guelph

Guelph, Quebec, Canada

Guelph, Quebec, Canada

Jul
07
The Funky Mamas @ Bobcaygeon Concerts in the Park

Omemee, Ontario, Canada

Omemee, Ontario, Canada

Apr
16
The Funky Mamas @ 10 Carden St

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Guelph, Ontario, Canada

Jan
29
The Funky Mamas @ St James Co-Op Nursery School

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Jul
20
The Funky Mamas @ Home County Music and Arts Festival

London, Ontario, Canada

London, Ontario, Canada

Jul
19
The Funky Mamas @ Home County Music and Arts Festival

London, Ontario, Canada

London, Ontario, Canada

Jul
18
The Funky Mamas @ Home County Music and Arts Festival

London, Ontario, Canada

London, Ontario, Canada

Jul
10
The Funky Mamas @ Friends of the Huntsville Public Library Childrens Performance

Huntsville, Ontario, Canada

Huntsville, Ontario, Canada

Jul
05
The Funky Mamas @ Acton Public Library

Acton, Ontario, Canada

Acton, Ontario, Canada

Jul
05
The Funky Mamas @ Georgetown Public Library

georgetown, Ontario, Canada

georgetown, Ontario, Canada

Jun
22
The Funky Mamas @ Latitudes Storytelling Festival

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Music

Press


"Those Mamas are Funky!"

Move over Sharon, Lois and Bram, the Funky Mamas have arrived, complete with a Funky Kids Chorus. Formed six years ago at a play group in Guleph, Onatio, the Mamas are guaranteed to keep both kids and parents entertained. And these six ladies should know: between them they're the mothers of 15 children.....
The groups 15 song CD features instruments ranging from a mandolin to a musical saw and includes folk classics like "Oh Susannah," children's favourites like "Teddy Bear's Picnic" and original compositions like "Pancake Song."


- Family Magazine


"The Funky Mamas"

Here's something rather fun and refreshing from a group of women ­ dare I say O Mamas, who hail from the Guelph area, notorious for its high density of musical mothers. This disc is not designed to rock your world, necessarily, but it is a delight to listen to with its crisp, clean lead
vocals, simple yet effective harmonies, sturdy instrumental flourishes on a
range of weapons (including banjo, harmonica, fiddle, pennywhistle, mandolin
and guitar), entertaining originals and smart covers. It is clear that this
bunch love what they do and they never lose their focus for their audience,
erring on the lovably goofy side of adulthood for the kids sake. And ­ for
kids sake ­ there is the Funky Kids Chorus, which keeps things grounded in
mini-reality. These 6 homegrown fireballs: Kate, Alicia, Georgia, Chantal,
Pam and Tannis ­ with 15 kids between them ­ have more energy than anyone
might expect from a non-Funky Mama. Yet the bulk of their work is spirited
folk-cum-bluegrass, making this disc a good bet for everything from the
campfire to the ride to the cottage. It encourages singing along and it
provides many a good giggle along the way. Singalong staples like Oh Susannah benefit from Kate's well-brandished banjo, Georgia's harmonica and Pam's mandolin while Woody Guthrie's "Bling Blang" soars thanks to their
tight harmonies. Alicia's animated vocal on "Boogie Woogie Washer Women" is
a barrel of laughs and might change the way you approach the bathtub. The
traditional "Teddy Bear's Picnic" is one of the disc's most tastefully
crafted numbers, as guitar, banjo and mandolin (and somewhat spooky saw!)
create a lush musical base for Tannis' rich vocals. The Carter Family's
"Keep on the Sunnyside" is updated, dramatically, with a kids' chorus as one
young joker after another tells a quick one to keep things hilarious. Cool
originals like Alicia's short-but-sweet "Summer Storm" and Alicia's string
bass-led "Pancake Song" ­ an ode to spring that should be double the length,
demonstrate their ability to create their own quality material. Kate's
"Bedtime Blues" is rooted in blues but can¹t help but combine actual kids'
laughter with Beach Boy-type harmonies in "Barbara Ann" fashion. All in all,
these Mamas are Funky but they are, above all, fun and fresh. They have become popular on the Festival circuit and something tells me that the kids would love to see what them perform this material live. Judging from this release, a good time would be had by all.

- Toronto Families


"Gettin' Funky"

What started out as a hip group of women getting together to jam for friends and family has turned into a real success story for six funky mamas from Guelph.

The Funky Mamas, hailed as Guelph’s best children’s band are Pam Harrison, Tannis Maynard-Langedijk, Alicia Miecznikowski, Georgia Urban, Chantal Von Maydell, and Kate Vsetula.

Together they blend their voices and talent, having entertained children from Southwestern Ontario to Lethbridge, Alta., and many points in between, with a mix of blues, bluegrass, folk, and pop.

Their lively show offers traditional children’s standards combined with a host of fantastic original numbers inspired, and at times partially co-written, by their own kids.

“My kids have sat at the table with me when I’m making a song and I’ll ask ‘do you want to help me with it,’” says Miecznikowski who believes that music provides a fantastic opportunity to communicate with children on their level.

“Their immediate input and their excitement in helping create something and complete something that they feel really involves them is important.”

Plus what better way to keep your finger on the pulse of kids than by picking the brains of their peers.

They band admits they didn’t really know where their friendship and love of music would take them, but six and a half years later they have sold out the first run of their self-titled debut album “Mamas’ Fishing”, and are recording their environmentally themed, sophomore release titled “Dig Your Mama.”

As mothers to 15 children, they have to be very organized and at times logistic wizards when juggling and arranging suitable times for rehearsals and caretakers for the kids during their shows, which are growing in size and frequency each year.

“A big part of our challenge has been our show has gone from being community based with mainly friends and family to well produced shows at big events,” Vsetula explains.

“The whole feel of The (Funky) Mamas has changed.”

The women laugh as they reminisce about the days when it was commonplace for their kids to run up on stage, ask for a juice box in the middle of a set, or to perform with babies on their hips.

Today their children, who range from ages 2 ½ to 12, don’t require the same amount of personal attention. This has allowed the band to work toward a new level of focus and professionalism.

They have recently found the need to hire a booking agent to take care of scheduling, and Vsetula has stepped up her role to take on promoting the act and distributing their CD.

Their album is being sold locally, through their website, and is now being distributed throughout the Canadian library system by Library Services Centre and Library Bound Inc., and American libraries through BWI Books.

Magical, lively, unpredictable and always ready to have a good time are how the women see their young audiences.

But the kids aren’t the only ones leaving the shows on cloud nine.

“I enjoy seeing the parents so pleased to see their kids happy,” says Harrison.



- City Parent


"Funky Group on their Way!"

In my next life, I’m coming back as one these women!
These six moms from Guelph have it all talent, creativity, energy, humour and 15 children between them and they are indeed funky. For almost six years, they’ve combined their vocal and instrumental talents to perform original and traditional songs for children, largely through the
folk festival circuit. Now they¹ve released a CD of their infectious, spirited music-making. The Funky Mamas CD is a delightful combination of laughter and silliness on the one hand and well-produced musicianship on the other. Banjos, mandolins, musical saws, juice harps, and harmonicas are joined by the Mamas’ harmonizing vocals and children’s giggles to make you
feel like you’re sitting around a campfire listening to them jam with their kids. Their parenting experience shows as they write and perform songs about things kids like from the imaginary ("The Alligator Romp", "Dinosaur Song") to the stuff of daily life ("The Bedtime Blues", "Pancake Song").
Deanne Fisher Arts & Entertainment Editor

- City Parent


"The Funky Mamas' Music makes them Dance!"

This is a "toe tappin', finger snappin' and belly laughin'" CD that includes many original and familiar folk songs with loads of appeal for young children! The instrumentation, including banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, recorder, juice harp and musical saw, truly demonstrate the diverse talent of this group! At my day care the children growled, hissed and quacked along with "Animal Says", bounced in their seats to "Mamas' Fishing", shook egg shakers to "Foolish Frog", and then shook it all about to their all-time favourite "Hokey Pokey". Anything my kids love, I love! And so will you and yours!
Angelique Davies, editor - Music Time


"Mom's the Word"

The celebrity's cliche about being grateful to all the little people was never more true.
The children's group The Funky Mamas is poised to hit it big with the release of its first full length CD, and they owe it to thier biggest fans, little Guelphites.
The CD of 15 songs is selling all over North America through cdbaby.om and has just been signed on to a number of Canadian distributors. - The Guelph Tribune


"Funky Group on their Way!"

In my next life, I’m coming back as one these women!
These six moms from Guelph have it all talent, creativity, energy, humour and 15 children between them and they are indeed funky. For almost six years, they’ve combined their vocal and instrumental talents to perform original and traditional songs for children, largely through the
folk festival circuit. Now they¹ve released a CD of their infectious, spirited music-making. The Funky Mamas CD is a delightful combination of laughter and silliness on the one hand and well-produced musicianship on the other. Banjos, mandolins, musical saws, juice harps, and harmonicas are joined by the Mamas’ harmonizing vocals and children’s giggles to make you
feel like you’re sitting around a campfire listening to them jam with their kids. Their parenting experience shows as they write and perform songs about things kids like from the imaginary ("The Alligator Romp", "Dinosaur Song") to the stuff of daily life ("The Bedtime Blues", "Pancake Song").
Deanne Fisher Arts & Entertainment Editor

- City Parent


"Mamas rollin' along nicely! Guelph's First Ladies of Children's Music"


by JOANNE SHUTTLEWORTH


Almost every day is Take your Kid to Work Day for the Funky Mamas. With 11 children ranging in age from six to 15 among the five musical Mamas, professional discussion about the achievements and goals of the popular children's entertainers invariably become domestic.

And why not? The women met each other through their kids, joined together in song to entertain their kids, test their material on their kids, and have even included their kids in their concerts.

"We formed a strong network for ourselves and built this amazing community for our families," said Kate Vsetula -- Banjo Mama to her fans -- and spokesperson for the group. "Our kids grew up like cousins.

"It's always a challenge to juggle who will mind the kids, but this is different than a regular day job. We often had a baby in tow when we went to performances. We call them the Funky Kids."

The Funky Kids' Choir has joined their Mamas on stage, too. Some do Irish dancing, some play the fiddle, some play piano, and at one concert at a seniors' residence, the kids were square dancing with some audience members.

"That was such a heartwarming experience," Vsetula said. "The kids get tons of perks."

The Funky Mamas began performing together in 1998 and have rapidly risen in popularity and acclaim in the children's entertainment world. Their high-energy concerts are child-appropriate and adult-friendly -- something parents don't always say of the big purple dinosaur Barney, for example.

As they enter their second decade together, The Funky Mamas recently launched their second CD, "Rollin' Along," and are talking with a TV producer about hosting their own television show.

About 800 people showed up late last month at St. George's Anglican Church in Guelph for the CD launch party. They are holding a second launch party in Toronto next week.

"We really wanted to launch the CD in Guelph," said Vsetula. "This is our family, these are our fans and this is our community."

About half the songs are original; the other half are probably familiar, although with their unique assortment of instruments -- musical saw, pennywhistle, mandolin, banjo, fiddle, guitar among them -- it's unlikely you've heard these arrangements before.

They describe themselves as being kid-friendly, Earth-appreciating mothers who understand that parenting is as difficult as it is wonderful. What they pull off on stage, and what's audible on the CD is their love of creating music and their respect for their audiences.

"We're so thrilled, so lucky, to be paid to do this," Vsetula said.

Alicia Miecznikowski, who plays bass, vox and percussion, did the cover art for the CD -- a plasticene likeness of the women rollin' along a riverside landscape. The actual art piece is on display at Wyndham Art.

The other Mamas are Tannis Maynard Langedijk (guitar, ukulele, percussion and vox), Chantal von Maydell (fiddle, drums, bass, vox), and Georgia Urban (musical saw, guitar, pennywhistle, bass, mandolin, vox).

The CD is available online at cdbaby.com and thefunkymamas.com, Chapters, and in Guelph at Ground Floor Music, Community Roots, Merry-go-Round, Diaper Days, Duncan McPhee and Wyndham Art Supplies.

jshuttleworth@guelphmercury.com

NEW IN MUSIC

What: Funky Mamas' second CD, "Rollin' Along"

Available at: Ground Floor Music, Chapters, cdbaby.com and various other Guelph retailers

On the web: thefunkymamas.com - The Guelph Mercury


"KIDS ROCK!"

We parents love it when our kids respond to music, but our first mistake is to think their unsophisticated taste should begin with saccharine sing-along lyrics....
Fortunately things are looking up on the kid's music front and there's plenty to choose from to please you and your kids.
There are great Canadian acts that understand that parents are listening too. Eric Nagler, Jack Grunsky, Connie Kaldor, Fred Penner, Raffi and The Funky Mamas are among the best. - New Pharmacist


"Funky Mamas release second CD titled Rollin' Along"



The Funky Mamas have just released their second CD, Rollin’ Along, playing to two full-house crowds in Guelph on Nov. 24.

Almost 800 parents and children, friends and relations danced, clapped hands, snapped fingers, and generally grooved with the Mamas at a free, community-based family event at Mitchell Hall, St. George Church.

The enthusiasm of the crowd for the highly interactive performance, plus strong CD sales, speak to the loyal following the Funky Mamas have gathered over the years.

The Guelph-based group of five musical moms has played tunes for children and their families since 1996. The musicians include Huntsville’s own Georgia Urban on musical saw, guitar, mandolin, pennywhistle, bass and percussion; Tannis Maynard-Langedijk on guitar and percussion; Kate Vsetula on banjo and banjo-uke; Alicia Miecznikowski on bass and percussion; and Chantal von Maydell on fiddle and drums.

All the Mamas harmonize and sing lead vocals and have composed and arranged material for the group.

The Funky Mamas have appeared at events and festivals around Ontario and Canada, including the Huntsville Winter Carnival (2003-05), Hillside Festival, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Burlington’s Sound of Music Festival, Lethbridge Children’s Festival, as well as numerous public libraries, schools, corporate and fundraising events, and TV spots on TVO and Rogers.

The Funky Mamas’ self-titled first CD was released in 2003.

Anyone who has heard the Funky Mamas knows how infectious their music is. Rollin’ Along continues that tradition with a selection of both original and traditional songs (10 of the 16 are original works) in both English and French. The bluesy first (and title) song gets the fingers snapping and toes tapping and, in performances, always features a long “choo-choo train” of children and parents snaking around the hall.

Bluegrass and folk influences are strong in arrangements of traditional songs such as Shortnin’ Bread, Alouette (powered by Mama Chantal’s rollicking fiddle), Raccoon and Possum, and Rattlin’ Bog. Anyone who has ever had a mouse in the house can relate to Mama Tannis’s Hommage au Fromage.

Rap rhythms drive Mama Kate’s composition Blast Off into Reading, performed with the Funky Children’s Choir (the Mamas’ 12 children). Mama Georgia’s Go Bananas encourages everyone to act like monkeys – “I don’t eat bread and cheese, I eat things that grow on trees.”

The Mamas’ strong commitment to environmental causes inspired the group composition, Breath in the Air. You can see this one as well as Go Bananas on Youtube. Mama Alicia’s Tooth Fairy Twirl tells a familiar tale of dismay – the loose tooth that just disappeared.

The spirited recording features crisp vocals, simple harmonies and a range of instrumental support. In performance, the Mamas seem to switch around instruments for every number, sometimes tag-teaming mid-song. Rollin’ Along is a recording the whole family can enjoy. It’s music that makes you move and smile.

The Funky Mamas CDs, Rollin’ Along and The Funky Mamas, are available in Huntsville at the Bookcase and the Great Vine or online at www.thefunkymamas.com.

- Huntsville Forester


"Funky Mamas release second CD titled Rollin' Along"



The Funky Mamas have just released their second CD, Rollin’ Along, playing to two full-house crowds in Guelph on Nov. 24.

Almost 800 parents and children, friends and relations danced, clapped hands, snapped fingers, and generally grooved with the Mamas at a free, community-based family event at Mitchell Hall, St. George Church.

The enthusiasm of the crowd for the highly interactive performance, plus strong CD sales, speak to the loyal following the Funky Mamas have gathered over the years.

The Guelph-based group of five musical moms has played tunes for children and their families since 1996. The musicians include Huntsville’s own Georgia Urban on musical saw, guitar, mandolin, pennywhistle, bass and percussion; Tannis Maynard-Langedijk on guitar and percussion; Kate Vsetula on banjo and banjo-uke; Alicia Miecznikowski on bass and percussion; and Chantal von Maydell on fiddle and drums.

All the Mamas harmonize and sing lead vocals and have composed and arranged material for the group.

The Funky Mamas have appeared at events and festivals around Ontario and Canada, including the Huntsville Winter Carnival (2003-05), Hillside Festival, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Burlington’s Sound of Music Festival, Lethbridge Children’s Festival, as well as numerous public libraries, schools, corporate and fundraising events, and TV spots on TVO and Rogers.

The Funky Mamas’ self-titled first CD was released in 2003.

Anyone who has heard the Funky Mamas knows how infectious their music is. Rollin’ Along continues that tradition with a selection of both original and traditional songs (10 of the 16 are original works) in both English and French. The bluesy first (and title) song gets the fingers snapping and toes tapping and, in performances, always features a long “choo-choo train” of children and parents snaking around the hall.

Bluegrass and folk influences are strong in arrangements of traditional songs such as Shortnin’ Bread, Alouette (powered by Mama Chantal’s rollicking fiddle), Raccoon and Possum, and Rattlin’ Bog. Anyone who has ever had a mouse in the house can relate to Mama Tannis’s Hommage au Fromage.

Rap rhythms drive Mama Kate’s composition Blast Off into Reading, performed with the Funky Children’s Choir (the Mamas’ 12 children). Mama Georgia’s Go Bananas encourages everyone to act like monkeys – “I don’t eat bread and cheese, I eat things that grow on trees.”

The Mamas’ strong commitment to environmental causes inspired the group composition, Breath in the Air. You can see this one as well as Go Bananas on Youtube. Mama Alicia’s Tooth Fairy Twirl tells a familiar tale of dismay – the loose tooth that just disappeared.

The spirited recording features crisp vocals, simple harmonies and a range of instrumental support. In performance, the Mamas seem to switch around instruments for every number, sometimes tag-teaming mid-song. Rollin’ Along is a recording the whole family can enjoy. It’s music that makes you move and smile.

The Funky Mamas CDs, Rollin’ Along and The Funky Mamas, are available in Huntsville at the Bookcase and the Great Vine or online at www.thefunkymamas.com.

- Huntsville Forester


Discography

LP Pickin' In The Garden 2012
A Parents' Choice Recommended Award
Short listed for a Grammy Award

LP Rollin' Along 2008
A Parents Choice Recommended Award Winner

Like any quintessential Canadian recording, Rollin Along can be described as the perfect music for the road trip, in this case, the minivan roadtrip. This sunny, big-hearted album is just goofy enough, but with the necessary musical prowess, to do any kid (and parent within earshot) right.

LP The Funky Mamas (Mamas Fishin) 2003

A creative and exciting cd for families that inspires dancing and singing along. This CD has one of hearts of many fans both in Canada and internationally.

"In my next life, Im coming back as one these women! These six moms from Guelph have it all talent, creativity, energy, humour and 15 children between them and they are indeed funky. For almost six years, theyve combined their vocal and instrumental talents to perform original and traditional songs for children, largely through the folk festival circuit. Now they've released a CD of their infectious, spirited music-making. The Funky Mamas CD is a delightful combination of laughter and silliness on the one hand and well-produced musicianship on the other. Banjos, mandolins, musical saws, juice harps, and harmonicas are joined by the Mamas harmonizing vocals and childrens giggles to make you feel like youre sitting around a campfire listening to them jam with their kids. Their parenting experience shows as they write and perform songs about things kids like from the imaginary ("The Alligator Romp", "Dinosaur Song") to the stuff of daily life ("The Bedtime Blues", "Pancake Song"). "
Deanne Fisher, Arts and Entertainment Reviewer

Photos

Bio

Welcome to The Funky Mamas Family.  We have been sharing our love of community and authentic live, interactive musical performances with our audiences of all ages for over two decades now.

Inspired by traditional folk music, we play a mixture of familiar and original tunes that cross several genres with an emphasis on live instrumentation and vocal harmonies and inspiring audiences to play, dance and sing along.  

We are Tannis, Chantal and Georgia, and we play a combination of acoustic instruments including bass, guitar, ukulele, mandolin and even the musical saw!  With hundreds of live shows in all corners of Canada and three critically acclaimed CDs we look forward to sharing our music with you and your audience.

The Funky Mamas will play a wide range of performances including libraries, schools, festivals, corporate parties and anywhere that live family music would enhance the event

Some of our past shows include Vancouver's Canada Day Celebration, London's Home County Folk Festival, The McMichael Gallery, Alianait Arts Festival in Nunavut, Cambridge and Peterborough Folk Festivals, Hillside Music Festival, The Museum of Civilization in Ottawa, Nathan Philips Square, Royal Botanical Gardens, Guelphs River Run Performing Arts Centre, Mariposa Folk Festival, Northern Lights Boreal, Winnipeg Folk Festival and the Lethbridge Children's Festival.

Here is what a few people have said about us:

"Hailing from the great northern land of children's music (Ontario, Canada) The Funky Mamas is a delightful group that mixes the string bending fun of bluegrass bands like Uncle Earl, with the witty lyricism of Loudon Wainwright III."
Lahri Bond Parents' Choice

"Fortunately things are looking up on the kids music front. There are great Canadian acts that understand that parents are listening too. Eric Nagler, Fred Penner, Jack Grunsky, Connie Kaldor, Raffi, and The Funky Mamas are among the best!"
Eric Thom, Published Music Reviewer

"Fabulous fun funky music, what a spectacular show! You girls are great to work with, the crowd loved you and we would have you back anytime!"
Samantha Jones, Collingwood Great Northern Fair

"Thanks so much for your performance at our school. The children have been talking and singing about it for days. We appreciate how you have fostered a love of music in our students."
The staff of Rockwood Public School

“If you haven't witnessed the frenzy of the live show firsthand, you can take the true litmus test in the comfort of your own home: throw on one of the the songs from their three award winning recordings and just watch the exhilarating, its-great-to-be-alive adrenalin rush sweep over your children. No sugar required. Especially for all you moms and dads who are musically challenged, let the band do your job for you. You can trust them, they're mothers.”

Dawn Matheson - mother of two

music@thefunkymamas.com
phone: 519-830-3669
https://www.facebook.com/TheFunkyMamas/