ShareThis Page
Gather up your inner child and go see Raffi at the Carnegie Library Music Hall |

Gather up your inner child and go see Raffi at the Carnegie Library Music Hall

Candy Williams
| Tuesday, May 2, 2017 9:00 p.m
Carrie Nuttall
Not many performers have dedicated themselves to children to the degree that Raffi Cavoukian — known simply as “Raffi” to his young fans and their families — has done for four decades

Not many performers have dedicated themselves to children to the degree that Raffi Cavoukian — known simply as “Raffi” to his young fans and their families — has done for four decades.

Raffi, 69, admits there’s still a part of him that hasn’t totally matured.

He says he’s having as much fun making music now as he ever has, vowing to record an album a year going forward. “I’m feeling unrestrained and I’m really feeling the joy of it, and that’s a nice feeling. The 5-year-old in me is alive and well, and the class clown in me is having a great time.”

Besides creating a series of “Raffi Songs to Read” children’s books and nearly 30 albums, starting with his “Singable Songs for the Very Young” in 1976 up through his recently released “Best of Raffi” CD, the children’s troubadour has devoted his career to putting kids first.

The Canadian entertainer who lives in Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, founded the Centre For Child Honouring, a social change movement that promotes a philosophy of respecting children and the Earth through initiatives that heal communities and restore ecosystems.

Raffi currently is on a national tour with proceeds of his concerts to benefit the Centre for Child Honouring. One of his tour stops will be at Carnegie Library Music Hall in Munhall, where he will perform a concert of “40 years of Singable Songs” on May 7.

The concert will feature some of his fans’ favorite tunes, including classics such as “Down By the Bay” (1976), “Bananaphone” (1994) and a song that has won him legions of followers, “Baby Beluga” (1980).

His tribute to the increasing decline of the beluga whale population in the St. Lawrence River became a popular children’s sing-along song — one that is still loved by his “Beluga Grads,” the name he has lovingly given to the scores of people who grew up with his music and now bring their children to his shows.

“When I shout out ‘Hello, Beluga Grads!’ there’s always a roar from the crowd,” Raffi says.

His concerts are a homecoming for kids who grew up — but not completely.

“They sing along from the first word on; it’s a beautiful sing-along. Their inner child is sparkling and watching the very same songs they knew as children. They are moved by the experience,” he says.

When asked if there’s anything he feels he hasn’t accomplished in his long career of inspiring children and their families, he quickly replies, “A duet with Paul McCartney? I haven’t done that.”

A devoted Raffi enthusiast has to believe he just might find a way to make his bucket list wish come true.

Candy Williams is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

Categories: Music
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.