If you’re young, or just feeling young at heart, the next artist in our Presenting Series is for you! We are welcoming Recess Monkey, the Grammy-nominated forefront of “Kindie” music, to the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center for a day of fun and learning. Drew Holloway, Korum Bischoff, and Jack Forman are three schoolteachers who have turned their passion for learning into a life of sharing fun and excitement for all ages. We asked Jack Forman, the bassist and vocalist, some questions about coming to South Bend to play for us.
Exactly what are your Hoosier origins?
I was born in Bloomington, where both of my parents were IU alums who worked for the University. I have extended family in Columbus, Evansville, Newburgh, Westport and scattered throughout the state! We left for Seattle when I was in elementary school, but every time my feet hit a sidewalk in Indiana, I feel like I’m home.
Is this the band’s first concert in Indiana?
We’ve driven through the northern corner of Indiana on several tours, but this is our very first show in the Hoosier State!
Of course, you’ll play your favorite hits, but what is the one song you enjoy performing the most?
We have one particular song about jumping into the pool called “The Deep End” where over the course of the song we transform the theater into a giant diving board and get kids to jump from an imaginary great height and scream as loud as possible. It’s a very Beatle-Mania kind of moment for us, and cathartic for everyone who screamed!
We developed our voices, rapport, and understanding of childhood themes as classroom teachers …
As former teachers, what grades and/or subjects did each of you teach?
We all have elementary backgrounds and have taught collectively every grade from pre-K through middle school. Our lead singer Drew and drummer Korum are both still actively teaching music, Drew as the elementary school music specialist, and Korum as a private drum teacher. I left the classroom eight years ago but my radio show on SiriusXM Live From the Monkey House feels very much like an enormous, hysterical classroom.
How does writing original music, performing, and recording exercise those classroom skills?
We developed our voices, rapport, and understanding of childhood themes as classroom teachers—now we get to use those skills to turn our music into a giant mirror that reflects universal themes of childhood back at the families that we play for. We think of ourselves less as musical educators, and more as a musical reminder of the joy of childhood—both for kids and the adults in our audiences.
To what do you attribute your success and where can we point readers to listen to you leading up to the show?
SiriusXM subscribers can hear my live calling show on SiriusXM channel 78, Kids Place Live. On my show, Live From the Monkey House, I play great music for all ages and choose daily themes that tie kid ideas together with games, songs, and a lot of laughter. We’ve been making music as Recess Monkey for 15 years now, and our success has really been driven by our excitement about childhood and how much fun it is to be on stage at these shows. We’ve played over 1000 shows and made fourteen albums, but most of it has felt like WE were in the audience!
Thank you to Jack Forman for his fun answers to our questions! To see the excitement on stage, get your tickets for Recess Monkey on Saturday, October 26 at 11 a.m. The show is kid-friendly and all ages are welcome. We hope to see you there!