By Molly Daly
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Best-selling children’s author Sandra Boynton has gone country with her 5th CD/book combination, Frog Trouble.
The Germantown Friends alum tapped stars including Brad Paisley, Alison Krauss, and Josh Turner to perform her original songs.
Calling Sandra Boynton accomplished is an understatement: She’s a writer, illustrator, humorist, songwriter, producer, and director, who’s put out more than 50 books.
“People who went to Germantown Friends, it doesn’t occur to them that they couldn’t do all kinds of things, because you were always encouraged to try all kinds of different directions,” Boynton said.
With Frog Trouble, the compass pointed to Nashville.
Boynton says, “given that I grew up in Philadelphia, it seemed like an unlikely direction for me to go. People kept asking me why I hadn’t done a country album. It struck me as an odd question. I thought long and hard about it, and thought, ‘well, the music that I grew up with in Philadelphia, certainly, the dawn of rock and roll is all rooted in country.’ So all of a sudden I realized, it is my roots.’ And that’s why I wanted to go in this direction.”
For the album, Boynton enlisted a category-defying who’s who of singers and session musicians, including Darius Rucker, Ryan Adams, Ben Folds, and Linda Eder.
“I produced the whole album before I did the illustrations. I asked all the people I wanted to work with, so it’s a complete self-indulgence,” Boynton said.
The songs range from funny to lovely, with the words, sheet music, illustrations and artist bios packing the book.
“I think of the book as the most deluxe liner notes you can imagine,” Boynton said.
Although Boynton’s books fall in the children’s category, her work has a wider appeal.
“I tend to write things truly for all ages. I was trying to figure out what age range to put on it, and I ended up putting “For ages one to older than dirt,” she said.