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Singing About Mud

Ever since he was a student at Washington and Lee, Roger Day, of the Class of 1985, has known that music is a powerful way to reach kids.

Roger was half of the popular music duo Heinsohn and Day during their college days and beyond. (The other half, Eric Heinsohn, is a 1983 graduate.) As Roger related in a feature in the Savannah Morning News, it was while working as a program director at a summer camp in Birmingham, Ala., that he saw how children responded to his music.

Now a Parents Choice Gold Award-winning musician and performer, Roger calls his latest venture, a DVD called “Marsh Mud Madness,” “the most specifically educational project” that he’s done. It’s been receiving rave reviews since its release earlier this summer.

Collaborating with the Savannah Music Festival and Georgia Sea Grant, Roger developed an hour-long show about the importance of marshes and wetlands. A feature in the Savannah Morning News details the way he developed the idea and how, three years later, it wound up as a DVD.

Roger spent five days in 2009 exploring Sapelo Island, near Savannah. As he told the Morning News, he followed scientists around “and let them educate me about the ecosystem, what plants and animals are there, what roles they play.”

He put what he learned to music, performed the show and then filmed the DVD live at the Savannah Music Festival and on location on Sapelo Island.

Here’s how Roger describes what he hopes the project does: “The goal is that when kids watch this video, that they fall in love with all the creatures. We feel if you love something, you’re going to take care of it. The ultimate goal is to have the next generation of kids learning about how important the Atlantic coast and barrier islands are. If they love the hermit crab song, they’ll take care of it.”

It’s been a rousing success on every count. As the Christian Science Monitor wrote in June, “The science is sneakily good, the songs are fun, and the rhythms are downright infectious.”

You can read more about “Marsh Mud Madness” on Roger’s website at http://www.rogerday.com. And you can peek at one of the songs, “I Love to Study Mud!” in the video below: