Marty and the Magic Bag | Marty and the Magic Bag

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Kids/Family: Children's Storytelling Rock: Adult Alternative Pop/Rock Moods: Mood: Fun
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Marty and the Magic Bag

by Marty and the Magic Bag

A magical adventure for all ages, this concept album tells the story of a little boy who discovers an alien from the planet Jupiter who reminds the boy to hold on to his imaginative spirit when the responsibilities of adult life start to weigh him down.
Genre: Kids/Family: Children's Storytelling
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Thombelina
3:10 album only
2. Transformation
2:04 album only
3. Steve Martin McFly Johnson
2:30 album only
4. Imagination Is Real
2:07 album only
5. Magic Bag
2:58 album only
6. Heee!!
2:22 album only
7. 2014
2:48 album only
8. Dr. Cow
2:02 album only
9. Impossible
2:09 album only
10. Goodbye
2:56 album only
11. Mars
4:02 album only
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
"Once there was a little boy who went to school to learn about the world...." So begins Marty and the Magic Bag -- a project that I began working on about eight years ago that culminated in very special event on November 8, 2014.

When I was just a little boy, a character was born out of my imagination named Steve Martin McFly Johnson, an ode to my favorite comedian at the time and a movie about time travel that inspired my creative spirit. Marty, as I called him for short, was my imaginary friend -- an alien being from the planet Jupiter that befriended my older brother Mark and was his constant companion on many adventures throughout our youth.

Marty made a sacred promise to my brother back in those days that he'd take Mark to Jupiter as a birthday present when he turned forty years old. At the time, I didn't know how Marty would be able to carry out his promise. But I knew I had to figure out some way to make it happen. In the 1980's, Mark's 40th birthday -- November 11, 2014 -- seemed so far away from me, "some future time that I can't see when you'll be forty...." Those lyrics are from the song "2014," which tells the story of how the endless possibilities of childhood imagination start to yield to the realities of life as an adult as we grow older. As time went on, the spaceship journey promised to my brother started to look more and more like a pipe dream that might never happen.

Then, back in 2006, when my own daughter Nya was just two years old, my best friend Jeff Lieberman suggested that I turn the story of Marty into a book for kids. Jeff's suggestion inspired another idea. I had been wanting to write music for Nya since she was born, but every time I sat down to write, I felt completely uninspired. In fact, I hadn't written any music at all since before Nya was born. All of a sudden it occurred to me: I could tell the story of my childhood imaginary friend through music! And so Marty and the Magic Bag was born. Over the next few months, I felt completely inspired. The music started to pour out of me like never before. I wrote eleven songs with music and lyrics and recorded a demo on my laptop in late 2006.

In December 2006, I gathered a couple of close friends (and some of the best musicians I know) -- Chad Lieberman and Sam Levine -- to record the basic tracks for the album. There was definitely some magic happening and we captured some amazing sounds. Over the next few years, however, life (and the birth of Nya's brother, Clegg) got in the way and the project got shelved. Then in 2010, Marty and the Magic Bag got some new life when I went to Boston and recorded more parts with Jeff. The album was left incomplete once again though, and the daily grind of work and responsibilities pulled me back in. The creative spirit was not to be denied for long. After my life was turned upside down by divorce and career change, I rediscovered Marty and the importance of teaching my kids the power of imagination.

"Am I too old for spaceships? Can we still make it? To Marty's house we will go, to the red spot ground control!"
Suddenly, November 2014 was no longer "some future time that I can't see." It was right around the corner. I had to figure out a plan. I started brainstorming with my kids about how to make the journey to Jupiter a real possibility. A plan started to hatch that was foreshadowed years earlier in the music:

"And I will take you
On a spaceship up to Jupiter
We'll leave from the Youth Fair Grounds
And we'll build it from the scraps I find
We'll fill the rest in with our minds
We'll watch as the earth grows small
Shrink into a little ball
As magic starlight fills our eyes
To the real world say goodbye"

On November 8, 2014, we gathered at the Youth Fair Grounds to celebrate Mark's 40th birthday with a "spaceship" launch and the official release of Marty and the Magic Bag. Some of my closest friends joined forces with me to turn imagination into reality. Now you can experience the album too! I hope you enjoy the music and discover the power of your own imaginative spirit. Imagination is Real!



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