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Over the Rainbow Book with Judy Collins

September 8, 2010

Over the Rainbow
performed by Judy Collins, illustrated by Eric Puybaret
Imagine Publishing, 2010
picture book and CD

Listen to this CD more than once and you’ll appreciate the song, Over the Rainbow, in a new way. Why? Because Grammy Award winner, Judy Collins, sings a new verse, unheard by most audiences familiar with the Wizard of Oz. It’s not only lovely, it’s perfect and for me, gave new depth to a well-loved and favorite song.

Of course, it goes without saying that Ms. Collins’ voice is perfect for the romantic, softness of Over the Rainbow! I had a chance to speak with her about this recording to find out more about her and how parents and children could listen and read Over the Rainbow together.

WIN Over the Rainbow! E-mail your name and address to with “Rainbow” in the subject line. We will randomly select one lucky winner to receive a copy of the book. Deadline for entry is midnight MST on September 30, 2010.

***See Ms. Collins live in Denver at the Denver Press Club, September 13, 2010 at 6 p.m.

Colorado Parent: Over the Rainbow seems to resonate with audiences of all ages – why is that?

Judy Collins: It’s written by a brilliant songwriter. He wrote many versions of the song. The version he used created the ambiance of the The Wizard of Oz about wishes and dreams.

Kids have great imaginations. Children are very much about dreams – getting your dreams, magic is as good as anything, and so is music.

Colorado Parent: How should parents read the book with their kids?

Judy Collins: Parents should read the book with the kids and also listen to the song on the CD.  The purpose is to get kids and parents together and away from the TV and video games – I think even a few minutes a day is valuable. Some of my best memories as a child are of my mom reading to me; it was very comforting. It’s one of the few things that kids can do with their parents. There’s nothing like the intimacy of the story and the picture – it’s a great bonding tool. . . It’s also a good way to get kids to read.

Colorado Parent: What do you think of when you sing Over the Rainbow?

Judy Collins: I think of a million things – which is the point. When you’re singing, your imagination doesn’t stop; it’s the best of all worlds.

Colorado Parent: You have two additional songs on the CD, White Choral Bells and I See the Moon, did you choose those because of their lullaby qualities?

Judy Collins: Exactly – these are close to folk songs, they’re camp songs and timeless. We’ve been singing them for years. I think timeless music will always trump the new, chic and inventive.

Colorado Parent: Any suggestions for parents and children to do while listening to the bonus songs?

Judy Collins: Get out your drawing pad, get some drawing going on, take off from the songs and go from there.

Colorado Parent: Did growing up in Colorado affect your music?

Judy Collins: I lived in Denver from the age of nine. I grew up in a professional family; my father had a radio show for thirty years. I was always around music, I performed and was surrounded by music, so it was a natural path but very disciplined. I always had to practice. I get back there often; I have relatives still in Denver – my mother, brothers and nephew. It’s my home but I have to live in New York for my profession.

Colorado Parent: I’ve seen you perform and give book talks. You’re so full of life! Where do you get all your energy?

Judy Collins: I don’t drink, don’t smoke, I eat three meals a day, exercise, I have a lot of friends and laugh a lot.

Colorado Parent: Great advice!  Can you tell us a little about your new album, Paradise?

Judy Collins: Paradise is on my own record label. I have Over the Rainbow on it, a duet with Joan Baez . . . It’s been big on the charts, and I think it’s the best so far since In My Life.

Colorado Parent: Thank you so much, Ms. Collins, for sharing your thoughts with us today. We love your music and this beautiful project, Over the Rainbow and wish you much success.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Alan and Teresa Wilson permalink
    December 7, 2010 11:38 am

    Dear Judy,

    When are you coming back to Scotland? We’ve seen you so many times but can’t wait for your next visit. You might rmemeber us: we’re always waiting at the stage door. Terry usually has her picture taken with you. We “discovered” you in 1966 (“In My Life”), and we hardly go through a day without listening to some of your music. We love you and we love everything you’ve ever sung, or written and sung. I once requested “Albatross” at Queens Hall in Edinburgh. It made my year when you sang it.

    Lots of Love,

    Alan and Terry

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