From Nick Jr. to a neighborhood near you, Hot Peas ’N Butter will perform a series of Carnegie Kids concerts this season starting October 16. The four-time Parents’ Choice Award–winning group is known for taking children on a fun-filled musical journey around the world through their multicultural blend of Afro-Cuban, jazz, rock, and pop music. Read what Danny Lapidus, one of the lead “peas,” has to say about the group’s exciting new EP, music video, and community work.
Click here for the full listing of Hot Peas ’N Butter Carnegie Kids concerts.
Our music is as diverse as the children who come to our shows so it’s a perfect match.
All of us fans are excited for your new EP that’s being released this month. What can we expect to hear on the album?DL: We are really excited about the new EP. As musicians, we’re always looking to expand our horizons and try new things. We’ve been experimenting with pop music, so this album has been a lot of fun for us. Fans can expect some very upbeat, danceable songs, and all the songs have a seasonal significance. Some of the singles have already been released, like our summer songs “Here at Last!” and “Graduation Day.”
Your music incorporates many different styles, from Latin to pop and rock to jazz. Who are some of your biggest musical influences?DL: Everyone from Stevie Wonder to Héctor Lavoe, Miles Davis to Doc Watson, Pete Seeger to George Benson and Itzhak Perlman! We are also heavily influenced by today’s pop music—our kids love it and so do we. We try to blend all the traditional music we love with new sounds. (We also really love Marlo Thomas and “Free to Be ... You and Me!”—everyone should get that record.)
As veteran Carnegie Kids performers, what is your favorite part about performing for children in different communities?DL: We tend to play a lot outside of New York City, so it’s always a treat to perform here at home and throughout the five boroughs. Our music is as diverse as the children who come to our shows so it’s a perfect match.
Is there a Carnegie Kids venue that you are most excited to perform at this year?DL: The last time we performed at Snug Harbor I took my kids to the children’s museum afterwards and it was awesome! They loved it and so did I. They are a bit older now, but I plan on taking them again.
You have done a lot of work with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. What projects are you doing in collaboration with the hospital this year?DL: Hot Peas ’N Butter has once again composed the theme song to this year’s St. Jude Trike-A-Thon, which promotes awareness on bicycle safety and raises money to help the children at St. Jude. We have begun filming a music video with the kids in our New York City recording studio (podnoise.com), and will continue filming in November in Memphis. We will also be performing for all the patients and families right there in the hospital.
Why do you do this kind of work?DL: It’s such an honor to be a part of the St. Jude family; it’s our way of giving back for all the years of support we’ve received from children and their families.
In honor of your video premiere for “Colores,” what are your favorite colors?DL: My favorite color is purple, and Francisco’s is green. We’d love to know the favorite colors of all our fans!