Dragon Tales

Season 2 Episode 25

Let's Start a Band

0
Aired Weekdays 8:00 AM Mar 02, 2003 on PBS
9.6
out of 10
User Rating
6 votes
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Episode Summary

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Let's Start a Band
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"Let's Start a Band"

Nina, the babysitter, introduces herself and says that sometimes she thinks morning comes too soon. However, she says that the sooner she gets up, the sooner she can see some special friends, who really know how to get up with some pep in their step.

Musical #1: "Wake and Say Good Morning"

Nina says that there's nothing better than singing dragons to get your energy going. She promises lots of surprises and introduces the viewers to Sam and Jennifer, two young kids who just moved to the neighborhood. Sam and Jennifer are just sitting around. They say that they're bored and there's nothing to do. Nina asks Jennifer if they watch Dragon Tales and Jennifer says that they do. Everybody does. Nina says that she knows what the dragons would tell them to do if they're bored:

Musical #2: "Doodli-Do"

After the musical, we see the Sam and Jennifer were trying to dance along with the song. However, Jennifer trips and jokes that she "tripped like a tripping bear." Looking for more things to do, Nina sees some other kids that she babysits. She suggests they go play with them. When Jennifer suggests that maybe they just "Doodli-Do" again, Nina asks if she's shy. Jennifer admits that she is and Nina says that she knows a certain dragon who would feel the same way:

Musical #3: "Cassie"

Nina says that even though Cassie's shy, she knows that Cassie would work up the courage to go over and meet the kids. She says that what to say is the easiest thing.

Musical #4: "The Hello Song"

So they introduce themselves. Sam and Jennifer meet Tiffany, Marcus, Blake and Brittney. At first they're not sure what to play. A number of games are suggested: hide-and-seek, hopscotch, kickball, freeze-tag and bike-racing. Then, there's one suggestion that everyone likes: "Be a Dragon." Nina comments that if you live in their neighborhood, you've got to be into dragon games.

Musical #5: "Be a Dragon"

Musical #6: "Shake Your Dragon Tail"

During this Dragon Tune, the animated segments cut to scenes of the kids dancing along with the music. After the song ends, they decide that it would be a good idea to start a band. Marcus, however, complains that they don't know the first thing about music. Nina says that maybe they actually do know the first thing about music and has them clap their hands and stomp their feet.

Musical #7: "Clap" (a.k.a. "One-Kid Band")

Nina announces that it's time for one of her surprises. She introduces Dan Zanes, who she says is "a real professional singer and musician." Dan Zanes performs his song "All Around the Kitchen," which is available on the CD "Family Dance." The kids join in and sing along. Dan Zanes explains that he say that people playing music together were having the most fun and he wanted to do that too. He has Tiffany play the banjo, while he joins in on the harmonica. He says that he bets you can do anything music if you try.

Musical #8: "Betcha Can"

Musical #9: "Try"

Nina takes the kids to the park, where she has another surprise: a musicain named Harry. She says that she's seen him at the park before, so she made sure they "accidentally ran into" him on purpose. Harry plays the drums and cymbals and has the kids give it a try. When Marcus suggests that it probably wouldn't be possible for any of them to have a giant drumset in their homes, Harry shows them that they don't just have to play drums. He has them make music by beating on garbage can lids, tree branches, fences and more.

Musical #10: "The Wiggle Song"

Harry leaves, saying that they have some great drummers. A deliveryman comes, with a uniform that has a Dragon Tales logo. He gives the group a package from Zak and Wheezie and has Nina sign for it. They open it and find that it's a seemingly never-ending trove of musical instruments. They all grab one and play a nice instrumental piece with piano accompaniment. Another group of kids hears them playing and asks if they can dance while they play.

Musical #11: "Dance"

Musical #12: "The Ord Shuffle"

Jennifer complains that has trouble remembering the words to songs. Then, Erkyah Badu appears with her son, Seven. She's scatting. (Singing, but just using random nonsense words.) Nina introduces her as "a singer and actrees and one of my all-time favorites." Erykah suggests that Jennifer just sing a silly song. Instead of singing words, just try singing sounds that make you feel good and smile. She scats again and the kids join in and love it.

Musical #13: "Silly Song"

Erkyah says she can think of another great way to use their voices without singing any words.

Musical #14: "Hum"

Erkyah says that it's been great and leaves. The group is one big band now and Nina comments that music sure has a way of bringing people together. Then, Max, Emmy and the dragons are animated into the special. The kids pair off with their favorite dragons, including Jennifer with Cassie. The dragons don't actually speak, but they help with playing instruments as they all play "Count on a Friend."

Musical #15: "Count on a Friend"

Nina thanks the viewers and says to remember that music makes the world go round.

Musical #16: "Round & Round"

After the "Round & Round" song, the kids all say "Loooove it!" as a dedication appears in white lettering on a black background:







In Loving Memory Of
Nina Elias-Bamberger
1954-2002



This is immediately followed by the credits, with the instrumental piece playing the background and then sponsorship messages.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Originally appeared at TV Tome. Let's try something new --- a great Dragon Tales special that really twisted the format for a fun special with real kids and songs from the series.moreless

    9.3
    The following originally appeared at the original TV Tome:





    After much anticipation, it's the "Let's Make a Band" Dragon Tales special. It's a new concept for the series, never before has any story featured real kids and all of the previous stories have been entirely animated.



    This one starts with a young woman named Nina. She seems like a peppy, upbeat person. She somewhat reminds me of Paige Davis from the show Trading Spaces, although perhaps less annoying. Nina, like me, apparently would prefer it if she could sleep in. But she thinks she knows what could get our energy going.



    Musical #1: "Wake and Say Good Morning"



    This is a fairly decent Dragon Tune. I used to dislike this one, but now that I've heard it more often, I've gotten into it. It's snappy and fairly decent.



    Nina introduces us to Sam and Jennifer, her babysitting charges for the day. The gimmick is that they're new to the neighborhood. Apparently, they don't have a favorable opinion of the neighborhood, at least not yet anyway, as they're bored and think there's nothing to do. Nina recommends that they "Doodli-Do:"



    Musical #2: "Doodli-Do"



    I've always liked this tune. There's good animation, it's fun and upbeat and nice to sing along with.



    After the tune, we see Sam and Jennifer trying to dance along. Jennifer says that she "tripped like a tripping bear" - and okay, I'll give that to the writers, that one was clever. Nina decides to introduce Sam and Jennifer to some other kids in the neighborhood, which is probably a smart idea because if they just stayed at the same place the whole time, things would get boring. She wants them to meet some other kids that she babysits, but Jennifer is a bit shy. Nina compares this to the feelings of a personal favorite dragon of mine:



    Musical #3: "Cassie"



    Looooove it! Nice animation and cute song. My only gripe is that I wish they would include the entire song on the TV version. One nice thing here is getting to see all 72 of Cassie's brothers and sisters.



    Jennifer's now okay with meeting the new kids, but she's not sure what to say. Well, this one is easy to predict, if nothing else:



    Musical #4: "The Hello Song"



    An okay Dragon Tune. I like some of the others better, but I can't knock it.



    Sam and Jennifer meet up with Tiffany, Marcus, Blake and Brittney. They can't just stand around, so they all want to play around. Everyone likes something different. Not surprisingly, though, everyone watches Dragon Tales. So they decide to play:



    Musical #5: "Be a Dragon"



    "Let's all play a game..." I like this one. Even if it's a bit simple, it's still catchy. And it's so fun to paraphrase lyrics and make up your own song. "Let's all play a game, be a _____, that's the name!"



    Musical #6: "Shake Your Dragon Tail"



    After they're done playing "Be a Dragon," they "shake their dragon tails." This is probably my least favorite Dragon Tune. It's not well, bad, but it doesn't do much for me. Nice effect here though with splicing the animation with footage of the kids dancing.



    After the songs, Nina suggests that they start a band. This song choice is really predictable, but, of course, it fits.



    Musical #7: "Clap" (a.k.a. "One-Kid Band")



    This one is easily in my top five. It's fairly short and kinda repetitive too, but it's a good song and thoroughly enjoyable.



    Oh, at the start of the show, Nina promised some surprises. One of them is a musician named "Dan Zanes," and, oy vey, couldn't they have gotten someone else. He performs and the kids join in with him on a thoroughly forgettable song titled "All Around the Kitchen." Very repetitive, very boring. And it doesn't look like he's very excited. He finishes things up by saying that he bets the kids can do anything if they try.



    Musical #8: "Betcha Can"



    Definitely one of the better ones. Good theme and good muisc.



    Musical #9: "Try"



    I used to hate this one, but now I really like it. Funny how that is. Catchy song and nice animation, with such scenes as Shelley flying over the rainbow.



    Nina takes the kids to the park for another surprise: Harry. He's cooler than Dan Zanes, but who is he? Anyway, he's some kind of drummer. He teaches them about making music using all sorts of different things, not just limited to drums. Parents all over the world scream as their kids head into their kitchens for pots, pans and spoons.



    Musical #10: "The Wiggle Song"



    "Wiggle and a giggle and a beat that drum," the perfect song to fit in for this theme. Not too exciting, but a fairly catchy song that's likely to appeal to the general audience.



    A deliveryman arrives with a package that's labeled that it's from Zak and Wheezie. The kids head off with the instruments. They run into another group, who asks to join in.



    Musical #11: "Dance"



    Nice. A different type of singing that you usually hear and touching animation. It's on my favorites list.



    Musical #12: "The Ord Shuffle"



    I'm not a fan of this one. It doesn't excite me much and "Cassie" creams it. Watch for a nice sunset/lighting effect towards the end though.



    Jennifer complains that she can't remember the words to songs. So that's when Erykah Badu arrives with her son, Seven. (Seven? What kind of name is Seven? Seven of Nine?) She's scatting - a style of music in which you simply sing nonsense lyrics that come to mind. She suggests singing a:



    Musical #13: "Silly Song"



    Fun! Hilarious lyrics and wild animation. A definite hit.



    Erykah Badu says that you can even use your voice to make music without any words whatsoever.



    Musical #14: "Hum"



    Possibly my favorite "Dragon Tune." It's a song about facing your fears and so it's obvious that they're just using it here to fit in with the theme and not really in regard to what it's actually discussing. But the song itself rocks.



    Okay, now here we go with the part where dragons, Max and Emmy are animated into the special. It's kinda weird because they don't ever talk. But the animation and interaction is fairly realistic. They all play a song together:



    Musical #15: "Count on a Friend"



    I found it interesting that they chose to include this, since it isn't on the CD. But I like this song. Good theme again and colorful animation.



    Rather suddenly, we're wrapping up. Nina thanks everyone for watching. She says that music makes the world go round.



    Musical #16: "Round & Round"



    A bit too much repetition if you ask me. The song itself isn't bad, but it could use less repetition of the same lyrics.



    After the song, there's a dedication to Executive Producer, Nina Elias Bamberger. She passed away in late 2002 due to ovarian cancer. The entire Dragon Tales community joins in expressing their condolences to her and Sesame Workshop. Her death was no doubt a great loss to both Dragon Tales and Sesame Workshop.



    Analysis:

    Nice. Not bad for the first attempt of something of this sort. It's nice to have most of the songs available on high quality DVD. Shame on my local PBS station for choosing not to air this special. For the most part, the acting was believable. It was a bit odd to see the animated characters and not have them speak, but I can forgive this.

    Dragon Scales: 9/10moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (6)

    • Windows Media Player 9 lists the title of the DVD that comes with the free glow-in-the-dark stickers as "Let's Start A Band [With CD]" when the DVD is inserted while the PC is connected to the Internet. Um, what CD?

    • The box of the DVD insists that the DVD will only work on Region 1 (USA & Canada) DVD players, but a quick scan with DVD Genie reveals that the DVD will also work with region 3(South-East Asia) and 4(Australia, New Zeland, Mexico, Central & South America) DVD players.

    • In the song "Betcha Can", the words "Betcha Can" are captioned as "Bet You Can"

    • The Dragon Tune "Doodli-Do" is captioned as "Doodly-do." This mistake is not present on the sing-along content featured on the DVD version.

    • In the Dragon Tune, "Hello," Ord's name is incorrectly captioned as "Org" in the line, "Hi, Hello, My name is Zak, Wheezie, Ord, Cassie." This error is not present in the English subtitle caption track.

    • PBS online listings incorrectly give the names of Sam and Jennifer as Sarah and Joey.

  • QUOTES (9)

  • NOTES (6)

    • The DVD has two caption tracks: One standard white text on black background caption (standard captions) and a larger-sized yellow text with no background caption. (English subtitles) Both caption tracks are in English, with little differences (the standard caption displays 3 musical note symbols to signal the start of a Dragon Tune and all the text displayed during Dragon Tunes are prefixed and suffixed with a musical note symbol, while the lager yellow-text caption does not signal the start of a Dragon Tune and does not prefix and suffix the text during Dragon Tunes with musical note symbols). Additionally, the English subtitle track does not describe any sound effects.

    • Nina Elias Bamberger is credited as Nina Elias-Bamberger and Jennifer Michelle Brown is credited as Jennifer Brown.

    • "Let's Start a Band" features a total of sixteen "Dragon Tunes" from the series.

    • "Let's Start a Band" aired March 2, 2003 on most PBS stations. However, some stations chose to air "Let's Start a Band" at a different time, or not at all. Some stations also aired "Let's Start a Band" as part of a pledge drive, which included interviews with show staff.

    • The DVD version of "Let's Start a Band" offers the following special features:

      "Sing-Alongs" for five of the "Dragon Tunes" in the special. Sing alongs feature large, yellow captions, with the current word in the song highlighted in purple, as well as fireworks effects.
      Trailers for programs avaiable on Sony video/DVD, including Dragon Tales, Maggie and the Ferocious Beast, Bear in the Big Blue House and "Kermit's Swamp Years."
      Glow in the dark stickers of Max, Emmy and the dragons. (Available only by special order.)

    • "Let's Start a Band" is available on both video and DVD.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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