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Leeny and Tamara Facebook fan page
front cover 283Winner of a 2010 Parents' Choice Recommended Award!
Established in 1978, Parents' Choice is the nation's oldest nonprofit guide to quality children's media and toys. The Foundation's purpose is to search out and recommend products that help kids grow -- imaginatively, physically, morally and mentally -- fairly priced products that are fun, safe and socially sound.

"Singing duo Leeny and Tamara shine in Sharing the Same Stars. They entertain
with their country, rock, doo-wop, swing, folk, and pop songs, and they educate as well."  Read the whole review at Parents' Choice
ORANGE STAR Honored as a 2010 National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA) "Rising Star"!
Sharing the Same Stars has received special recognition from NAPPA in its brand new "Rising Stars" category, which honors a select number of Children's Products that reflect great potential. The National Parenting Publications Awards are your guide to the best gifts for kids and resources for parents.
"Great range of musical styles with catchy songs that make kids laugh, think, learn and feel." 
Click here for the NAPPA website and to see all the "Rising Stars" winners.

Winner of the prestigious Preferred Choice Award from Creative Child Magazine!

Creative Child Magazine is a national bi-monthly publication that provides parents with the latest information on how to nurture their child's creativity. Creative Child Magazine's Toy Awards Program is unique in that all products submitted are reviewed by moms, music educators and early education professionals. Click here for our Creative Child Magazine Award page!

Recipient of a 2011 and 2010 ASCAPLUS Songwriting Award!
The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) has honored Ilene Altman (aka Leeny) with an ASCAPLUS Award in the Popular Music category. The ASCAPLUS Awards Program is for writer members of any genre whose performances are primarily in venues not surveyed; and/or writer members whose catalogs have prestige value for which they would not otherwise be compensated. Established in 1914, ASCAP is a membership association of more than 400,000 composers, songwriters, lyricists, and music publishers. ASCAP is the only U.S. performing rights organization created and controlled by its members.

Nominated for Song of the Year in the 10th Annual Independent Music Awards!
"Ladybug, Ladybug, Ladybu-u-ug" has been nominated for an Independent Music Award (IMA) in the Children's Song category. Click here to check out Leeny's Q&A with the IMA!

reviews headline
front cover 283"We were given this CD as a gift and haven't stopped listening to it. Our almost-four-year old can't get enough, but I bet older kids would sing (and laugh!) along with gusto too. It reminds me of my favorite album from when I was little -- Free to Be You and Me. Some of the songs have a similarly inspiring message about being comfortable in your own skin. But it also has songs that are educational 'for the whole family'. I say that because the song about Ladybugs taught me much more than I ever knew about the insects. There are also songs about skin, vitamin C and the 50 states. The song Hold It will be an instant favorite with any kid in the 'potty talk' phase -- but it's so good-natured and funny, that you might find yourself singing along too."
-- Amazon.com reviewer
ORANGE STAR "It's hard to believe that this is a first joint effort for Leeny and Tamara. From '50s doo-wop to pop country, their fresh, unexpected vocal lines weave through all types of music to make this album a fun ride for the ears. Musical arrangements call to mind the epic partnership of Lennon & McCartney. There are a lot of funny lyrics that are actually educational for your preschoolers and young grade-schoolers. Songs send great messages about taking turns, buckling up, and being comfortable in you own skin. Catchy, quirky lyrics touch on a spectrum of kiddie topics. Parents and children will love learning, giggling and singing along." (5/5 stars)
-- Jessica Dawson, Common Sense Media
Read the whole review at Common Sense Media
ORANGE STAR "Leeny and Tamara have created a really fun, really catchy set of songs that actually teach us things. I've found myself saying things like, 'Did you know there are over five thousand species of ladybugs? And some of them are blue!' or 'Did you know that other animals can produce their own vitamin C, but humans have lost that ability and that's why we need to eat oranges or we may get scurvy?' Yeah, I'm a riot at parties. Their song, It's Cool To Be You highlights the fact that we all have our own talents and we're all different. My son Ivan is blind and can't walk and I can't remember ever hearing a song that actually admits that 'Some wheel around in chairs; Some can't hear and some can't see.' It's refreshing." 
-- Amber Bobnar, BostonChildrensMusic.com
Read the whole review at BostonChildrensMusic.com
ORANGE STAR "Leeny and Tamara's music is charming and thoughtful, with hummable melodies, pristine studio production, and countless little touches that will make both you and your kids smile. Their lyrics are geared toward kids ten and under, with topics that both teach and entertain. One of our favorite songs is Hold It, a wistful tune about having to pee really bad. We've all been there. Another standout is I Used To Be Shy, a thoughtful little tale of overcoming childhood shyness set to a bouncy pop melody. Most of this album is a mix of piano pop and guitar rock, with a touch of new wave, country, and rockabilly spread throughout. Leeny and Tamara beautifully harmonize from beginning to end. They have produced a wonderful set of songs that will please you and your kids for many years. Sharing The Same Stars receives my family's highest recommendation!"
-- Phil Corless, A Family Runs Through It
Read the whole review at A Family Runs Through It
(Phil also emailed us to say: "I Used To Be Shy is now in my Top 25 All Time Kids Songs!"
ORANGE STAR "Intelligent and catchy children's music that will appeal to adults as well as children. Highly informational and highly entertaining tunes. A mix of musical styles and tempos will keep kids and parents involved. I suspect a live performance would be highly entertaining."
-- Wildy Haskell, wildysworld/blogspot.com
ORANGE STAR "A fun, funny and educational CD for the under 10 crowd. This is an album that kids and parents alike will enjoy listening to over and over again. Leeny and Tamara have killer voices and sing in every style imaginable. The music will brighten your day and help the little ones learn a few things while they sing and dance to the music and have a rocking good time. Adults will be having the same rocking good time as the kids. This CD should be in the collections of any parent with young kids." (5/5 stars)
-- Andrea Guy, Ariel Publicity, ReviewYou.com
ORANGE STAR "One of the best albums of children's music on the market today. The songs cover a myriad of topics -- seat belts, sharing, shyness, ladybugs, little sisters, babies, beaches, and being born backwards -- to engage not only little listeners but parents as well."
-- John Stevens, Associate Professor, Berklee College of Music, Author of "The Songs of John Lennon: The Beatles Years"
ORANGE STAR "I tend to have little patience with kids songs, so my son has grown up with African Jazz and Bach and all sorts of things, but a dearth of singable happy tunes. We BOTH love Leeny and Tamara's songs! They have great voices and a wonderful earnestness about every single lyric."
-- Rebecca, Mom, NY
ORANGE STAR "I love it!!! Congratulations on a wonderful and successful album for children and thank you."
-- Daniel Matsukawa, Principal bassoonist, Philadelphia Orchestra
ORANGE STAR "In our house, we don't do 'kids' music a lot because so much of it is just too hard for musician parents to tolerate. But Sharing the Same Stars is something you can enjoy as a parent and a lover of great songs!"
-- Doug Wamble, E1/Universal Entertainment recording artist
ORANGE STAR "The album opens with the jazzy strains of Put on My Seat Belt and segues into the Beach Boys-ish pop crunch of Taking Turns, a terrific one-two punch that sets the wonderfully catchy tone for the rest of the disc. Leeny and Tamara trade lead vocals, and they're both gifted with bright, clear voices that fit these sunny tunes perfectly, while producer Art Hays does a tremendous job of turning a pile of overdubs into something that sounds like the work of a room full of ace session players. The songs are both educational My Baby runs through the names for different species' young; Your Epidermis Is Showing is a two-and-a-half minute skin gag; Vitamin C is... well, you get the idea) and uplifting (Little Sister addresses sibling conflicts; It's Cool to Be You reinforces positive differences)."
-- Jeff Giles, Dadnabbit
Read the whole review at Dadnabbit
ORANGE STAR "A great addition to The Playground! 14 songs that are full of humor, irony, and fun. Starting with the very first song titled Put On My Seat Belt, Leeny and Tamara do a great job of making important every day tasks seem fun and easy. The CD case also features unique artwork with all of the song lyrics so that you and your children can sing along with confidence."
-- DJ Sweet D, The Playground, WERS 88.9FM, www.wers.org
ORANGE STAR "Leeny and Tamara present 14 kid-pleasing tunes in swing, rock, pop, folk, and country musical styles. Several musicians perform excellent background music on keyboards, guitar, bass, saxophone, clarinet, flute, ukulele, percussion, drums, and fiddle. Tamara's sweet, almost girlish voice soars on I Used to Be Shy. The duo's wonderful harmonies are showcased on Singing Beach. Ladybug, Ladybug, Ladybu-u-ug and Your Epidermis Is Showing have driving beats that will get kids moving. Listeners can easily learn all 50 state names in Across the USA. While this album is very kid-friendly, the music is sophisticated enough to engage adults as well. An excellent purchase."
-- School Library Journal, Beverly Bixler, San Antonio Public Library, TX
Read the whole review at School Library Journal
ORANGE STAR "You can tell these ladies had fun making this CD. Ilene (Leeny) Altman, a Gloucester resident, teamed up with her longtime friend Tamara Hey to create 14 catchy tunes that your kids will love and learn from. From the inspirational It's Cool to be You to the zany I Came Out Backwards, our personal favorites are Little Sister and Hold It (hint: think potty time!)."
-- Heather Kempskie, Editor, Parents & Kids magazine, P&K Picks Jan'10 Check out Heather's review of "Little Sister" at The Siblings' Busy Book Blog
ORANGE STAR "I LOVE it!!!! Seriously good. My kids just love it too. Quality, intelligent kids music."
-- Shawn Pierce, composer
ORANGE STAR "My almost 6-year old and 2 1/2 yr old girls love their Leeny and Tamara CD. It's stylistically diverse and the melodies are catchy and easy to sing along to. Besides being well written and produced, what sets it apart from the the rest is that it's accessible to a wide age group of kids. Some children came over the other day ages 1 to 12 and everyone was dancing around. Some favorites are Put On My Seat Belt, Ladybug, Ladybug, Ladybu-u-ug, It's Cool To Be You, and Across the USA. I highly recommend Leeny and Tamara!!"
-- R. Clores, Mom, NY
ORANGE STAR "Leeny and Tamara rock kids' music! This is an album for kids, right? The answer is a resounding 'Yes!' Just witness how my nine-year-old and her friends play it over and over in the car as we buzz around town. Compelling beats and ecstatic melodies... it's the only children's record I've kept playing in the car after dropping my daughter off at school -- all others are history the minute she's safely inside. Give me a loud rendition of the rocker Ladybug, Ladybug, Ladybu-u-ug or the musical travelogue Across the USA from this album over depressing angst-ridden alt or 'too cool for you' college rock anytime. Good singing and good lyrics are my thing, and both are here in abundance. My favorite track is the wonderful My Baby, a love song from parent to child told with plenty of references to the young of quite a few kid-friendly animals. Confession: I get a bit misty when I hear it, thinking not only of my own kids but of the universal bond between parents and their offspring -- and it still has that effect after multiple, multiple listenings. My rating -- as high as they come. Get a few copies for all the kids and parents in your family." 
-- Rob Taube, songwriter/producer, Avid Records, NY
ORANGE STAR "When we played the CD it in the car for our 12-month old daughter, she immediately started bobbing her head and laughing. We'll definitely keep playing it for her and enjoying it!"
-- Mary and Dan Zank, composer/arranger, NY
ORANGE STAR "I'm a teacher, and I have used songs from Leeny and Tamara in both a classroom setting as well as in private lessons. The songs are a hit for both! Fun, catchy and smart, the kids love them, and actually... so do the adults! (I can attest!)"
-- Kathryn Zimmer, NY

"Leeny and Tamara are definitely at the top of the Kid Music list. I love Sharing the Same Stars. It is a fun, cheery, keep you interested sort of CD. When reviewing all the CDs that we do, you can tell the difference between an artist who likes to make music for kids and a true musician/songwriter who has decided to apply their efforts towards educating kids, while also arranging an awesome CD. I was listening in my car and when the CD came to an end, I just let it continue and start over. Did I mention I was alone with no kids in the car? It's Cool To Be You is a wonderful example of an effort to teach self-esteem, which so many kids have issues with. (5/5 Dirty Diapers!)
-- Ken Kramer, Crap4MyKid.com
Read the whole review at Crap4MyKid.com

"Leeny and Tamara's Sharing the Same Stars and Leeny and Steve's Be Nice CDs are filled with great sing along songs that are easy to remember, encourage participation, and contagiously spread happiness among listeners."
-- Kelly O'Connor, NorthShoreKid.com

ORANGE STAR "I love it. Great choice of subject matter. Leeny and Tamara have come up with, and executed a very cool thing."
-- Jeff Golub, E1/Universal Entertainment recording artist
ORANGE STAR "Great songs, great singing, great sound... but most importantly, when this album starts playing, my 15-month old daughter IMMEDIATELY starts movin' and groovin'. Makes any long road trip a pleasure and equally great to have on in the house. Highly recommended!"
-- iTunes reviewer

benice  Be Nice
  by Leeny and Steve

  Released May 2008
spacer15 miserably happy   Miserably Happy
  by Tamara Hey

  Released October 2008

Parents' Choice Approved Award
- Preferred Choice Award from
  Creative Child Magazine
Children's Music Web Award:
  Best Recording for Preschoolers
- Common Sense Media Best Music of 2008
  Recommended List for Your Family

"Sweet songs about small moments make a big impact. This well-produced and imaginative collection  of children's music has enough variety to engage older siblings and parents as well as toddlers. Prepare to be charmed by sparkling vocals and instrumental tracks...an impressive degree of taste and musicianship." (5/5 stars)
 - Kathi Goldmark, Common Sense Media

"Leeny and Steve kick it old school... Be Nice stands out in the 2008 kids' music market because it actually sounds like an album for children. This point was driven home for me as I watched my two-year-old daughter react to it... my daughter has always loved music, but I've never seen an album hold her attention right away like this."
 - Jeff Giles, Editor-In-Chief, Popdose

"Their simple, clean production keeps the performances low-key and intimate."
 - Warren Truitt, Kids' Music That Rocks
Senior Children's Librarian, New York Public Library

"Original pop songs with great musical accompaniment that will have kids dancing along. Songs are in a variety of styles, which shows the versatility of the artists. Teachers may want to adopt some songs for school assemblies."
 - Penny Peck, Editor, BayNews, Association of Children's Librarians of Northern California

"Leeny and Steve score on their debut album with 16 original tunes that have real kid appeal. The lyrics teach, but never preach. Several cuts deal with behavior. Many songs will be useful during story time."
 - Stephanie Bange, School Library Journal

"Entertaining and helps parents teach kids about life etiquette. Smart, well-written lyrics and upbeat melodies. Lively music for car rides or play dates, and does not take the intellect of an adult for granted."
 - Mary Wiggins, BostonMamas.com


One of the best songwriters in town. Memorable melodies and literate lyrics that stay with the listener. While Tamara Hey’s sound has always been a spirited amalgam of influences, she remains her own animal. An impressive and thoughtful creator, Hey’s a songwriter’s songwriter, composing insightful stories with characters far distant from her own personality, but who nonetheless ring quite true.”
 - Jonathan Berger, Boog City / Urban Folk Magazine, New York City

“All the humor, intelligence, sarcasm and soul searching that goes with being a New Yorker is reflected perfectly on Miserably Happy. Tamara Hey is quite the songwriter. Intelligent and funny lyrics back up against strong country/folk/rock arrangements that serve as perfect vehicles for Hey’s sweet voice. Tamara Hey is just quirky enough to be instantly memorable/recognizable. Once you’ve heard her sing you’ll always know Hey’s voice right away. That is a quality most singers would die for. Add to that the obvious talent and you have quite a package. Well-written and well-performed… Tamara Hey should be a viable force in folk and rock for some time to come.”
 - Wildy Haskell, wildysworld/blogspot.com

“Tamara Hey brings lighthearted optimism to a singer/songwriter genre often skewed toward the brooding and depressive. Miserably Happy blends humor, sarcasm, wit, and introspection to create a feel good album with tons of pop vibes. Her voice echoes the same spinnability and freedom that characterizes the era of the flower children. Hey can best be described as a blending of Aimee Mann’s storytelling prowess, Dido’s sincerity, and KT Tunstall’s poppy angst.”
 - Trevor Dye, Ariel Publicity

“Played the album once – and now I can’t stop playing it! Beautiful songs, great lyrics (clever, cutting and insightful) and a wonderful voice. Reminds me of the time when you’d buy an LP and say, ‘that’s a single… and so is that!’”
 - Rob Caiger, Beatroute Records, UK


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