Reviews

“Children’s singer, arts advocate and preschool music teacher Johnette Downing, nicknamed the “Pied Piper for Louisiana music traditions,” serves up a mélange of Cajun, Creole, Southern blues, Caribbean and boogie-woogie influences.”  — Laurel Fishman, Education Watch – Grammy Foundation, Grammy.com

“Johnette Downing is a true Louisiana artist. She sings and plays music; she paints; and she loves great Louisiana food. I fell in love with her work a few years ago when she sang “Today is Monday in Louisiana” on my PBS television series. Kudos to Johnette on another great work.” — Chef John Folse, A Taste of Louisiana TV

“Johnette Downing possesses an uncanny knack for engaging children and charming them with words and pictures or as a musician capturing and expressing the essence of musical styles and making them come alive and engage children. I have literally seen an entire auditorium sprout a sea of arms swaying to her musical summons. Her books are lively and original and speak ‘children’ as if it were a language unto itself. Both her books and music teach without seeming to by invoking joy and cleverness.”  — Dr. Michael Sartisky, President and Executive Director, Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

“Grammy material.”  — Stephen McCord, Stephen Edward Entertainment

“The Bonnie Raitt of children’s music.” — Duff, Carrboro, NC

“Bonnie Raitt, move over! There’s a new(er) blues belter in town. And she’s easy on the ears. New Orleans singer-songwriter Johnette Downing has a velvet set of pipes…”  — Education.com

“With her signature mix of Dixieland Jazz, Cajun, Creole and Zydeco rhythms, her vocal and instrumental sophistication and all-embracing warmth, Downing creates an irresistible musical jubilee.”  — Lynne Heffley, The Los Angeles Times

“Your kids won’t be able to sit still or stop smiling.”  — Glenn Whipp, Los Angeles Daily News

“Downing has certainly found a niche, serving up New Orleans-flavored tunes.”  — Publisher’s Weekly

“New Orleans native Johnette Downing whips up a savory jambalaya of blues- and Dixie-flavored tunes. Practically percolating rhythms.”  — Moira McCormick, Family Fun Magazine

“The New Orleans native singer/songwriter takes the music of her life – Cajun, zydeco and jazz – and mixes it into a kid-friendly gumbo.”  — South Florida Parenting

“Downing is a Pied Piper of Louisiana music traditions.”  — Michael Tisserand, Gambit Weekly

“Downing is a performer who clicks with children. Her music and messages are simple and clear. They speak to children in a language that they can relate to. Downing has created a rapport with children that has made her a favorite. Everyone is invited to come hear this exceptional entertainer.”  — Beauregard Daily News

“To Downing, songs are the tollbooths into the world of play, the most important destination for any kid.”  — Michael Tisserand, Gambit Weekly

“Energetic, charismatic, affectionate tunes. Laissez les bon temps rouler.”  — Kit Bloom, Parents’ Choice Foundation

“Toe tapping tunes.”  — Claire Green, Parents’ Choice Foundation, ABC World News Now

“Truly unique. Her pharising is second to none.”  — Sonny Payne, King Biscuit Time Radio Show

“Downing made children’s participation a must, as kids were dancing, singing, and playing during her entire performance.”  — Bryan Tuck, The Courier

“A truly Louisiana experience.” — Carol Donahue, The Livingston News

“New Orleans performer delights all with song.”  – Michelle Allen, Richland Beacon News

“An entire room of people – children, parents and a few grandparents – squirmed, jiggled and jumped. Their arms flapped, they pulled on their ears and, through it all, laughed and tried in vain to stay on key.” — Laura Tutor, The Anniston Star

“The children had a foot-stompin’, hip-shakin’, good time.” — Buster Kantrow, The Times Picayune

“Downing has cooked up a success.”  — Deborah Corraro, L’Observateur

“Giggles and wiggles were abundant.”  — Susan Poag, The Times Picayune

“Downing is wowing audiences all over.” — Carol Donahue, The Livingston News

“Occasionally there is a performer who clicks with a specific audience. Johnette Downing is one who does so with preschool children. Her music and messages are simple and clear. They are performed with well-considered arrangements designed for youngsters. They neither speak down, nor do they dumb down; they just are in language and world young children relate to.”  — Philip Melancon, Crescent City Parent Magazine

“Johnette was the absolute best example I could offer of someone that is everything children’s entertainment should be. Johnette has a passion for the music she plays, and it shines through each and every time she plays her guitar and sings a song.”  — Uncle Chris, The Kids Show, WTUL Radio

“When award-winning children’s musician Johnette Downing begins performing, audiences are inevitably drawn in and enchanted. She plays music like the pied piper, with children following wherever she leads. Her high energy performances take children on a journey through the misty bayous, into the jungle, and into the wilds of Africa. From leaping to dancing the Zydeco two-step, children move and groove to Johnette’s original songs. Audiences become part of the show through singing, clapping, moving, and dancing. Johnette often rounds out performances with members of the audiences playing rhythm and Cajun instruments.”  — Dianne de Las Casas, Working smARTS

“Her interactive performances have children and adults dancing and singing along to irresistible songs – no kidding.”  — Christine Manalla, New Orleans Magazine

“Best selling children’s artist at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.”  — Rusty Lien and Jesse Penny, Virgin Megastore

“This local performer has won numerous national awards for her ability to translate Louisiana music traditions into mini-parties for her kid fans. In the great Louisiana tradition, Downing sees her role not just as performer, but as a needed spark to get her audiences up and dancing. Here’s a chance for kids to get their necessary introductions to second lines and zydeco.”  — David Winkler-Schmit, Gambit Weekly

“Kids can become part of the show, dancing the zydeco two-step, singing along and grooving to her original songs. She has a lot of influences: Dixieland Jazz, Jazz, Cajun, Creole, Zydeco and Afro-Caribbean rhythms.”  — Raleigh News & Observer