The Swing Peepers, a vocal-harmony and multi-instrument duo, perform inventive, earth-friendly and interactive songs and stories. The Swing Peepers are lively, improvisational, and endearingly goofy. Instruments strummed, swung, and tapped include: guitar, mandolin, harmonica, banjo, ukulele, accordion and egg-shaker. Most songs and stories are participatory, and body movement is part of the action! The Swing Peepers draw out the creativity of audiences by having them participate in creating impromptu songs and stories. The Peeps take ideas from the audience and weave them into highly dramatic tall tales. These made-up-on-the-spot rollicking stories are The Swing Peepers' trademark - watch out for colorful surprises! The members of the Swing Peepers are John Hadden and Matthew Witten. John and Matthew are accomplished and eclectic musicians who have been performing in Vermont and elsewhere in the Northeast for 20 years at festivals, schools, parks, cafes, and libraries. They are based near Camel's Hump in Northern Vermont. Matthew Witten and John Hadden have produced 3 recordings together. Their newest recording, Wiggle Room - just released in January, 2009 - is full of playfulness that appeals to both young and old, and features songs and stories about nature. A Few Good Tools: Songs for the Earth features a wonderful variety of environmental songs, and Life on Lake Champlain: Songs and Stories - a production of the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum - includes other well known performers in the region such as Pete Sutherland, Atlantic Crossing, and Native American storyteller Joe Bruchac. John and Matt have performed together as the Swing Peepers since 2000, and have conducted songwriting residencies in Vermont elementary schools since 2002. Their Playing to Your Strengths residency involves a five-day in-school program where they lead each class in the creation of a new song relating to the class's curriculum. The culmination of the residency is a community-wide concert and the creation of a CD recording of the concert. John Hadden John has appeared on a number stages throughout his career including Garrison Keiller's A Prairie Home Companion; the Champlain Valley Folk Festival; Burlington, Bristol, Richmond & Montpelier Vermont First Nights; the Boston Regional Harmony Sweepstakes, and countless coffee houses and festivals in the greater New England area. John was the Musical Director of Random Association, an award-winning contemporary a cappella vocal band, based out of Burlington, VT. John is also a member of Funk Shway, a funk-blues-jazz quartet, and Sweet Pea Crossing, a blues-rock band. John owns and operates Resting Lion Studio, a digital recording facility in Huntington, VT. Matthew Witten Matt is a musician, storyteller and educator, getting his start in performing on the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater singing to school groups and performing on stage with Pete Seeger, Pat Humphries, Kim and Jerry Brody, Magpie, and other musicians. Matt is a solo artist as well as a group performer. He performs twice per month (Songs and Stories with Matthew) at the Brownell Library in Essex Junction, VT, and in other libraries and schools throughout the state. He also performs as the Champlain Troubadour for the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, presenting songs and stories about the lake. Matt's specialties include: improvisational stories; songs with movement; stories based on African, Native American, Chinese and European folk tales, usually with a sung refrain; history of the Champlain and Hudson region; and an overall theme of respect for the earth. Matt also performs with Lausanne Allen and Rick Ceballos as North Star, a traditional folk trio. Here's a recent review of 'Wiggle Room': 'Vermont duo Matthew Witten and John Hadden, a.k.a. The Swing Peepers, have just released their third CD, Wiggle Room. They've been performing at libraries, parks and festivals around Vermont for about 15 years. The music is all original - and a few tracks on the new CD involve local kids (from Ferrisburg, Wallingford, and Huntington). Unlike a lot of kids' CDs, Wiggle Room is a delight for all ages - even parents. The voices are gentle and friendly, the music is entertaining and the themes are universal; many of the lyrics are about the earth, animals and night sky. Many of the 15 songs include animated story interludes to keep the sounds changing and little ears engaged.' - Kids VT, March, 2009 Some responses to past Swing Peeper performances: "Matthew and John, many thanks for a fabulous performance! Your musical repertoire is wonderful and your improvisational storytelling was incredible! The evening was a boost for creativity!" - Linda, Children's Librarian, Bennington, Vermont 'Thank you for playing at our event. The girls and I are huge fans of your music. Kasey asks for your CD every time we get in the car.' - Amy, Essex Jct., Vermont 'Thank you, wonderful Swing Peepers, for a perfectly delightful show. You guys were just perfect for a cool summer night!' - Lynn, Executive Director, Stowe Performing Arts, Stowe, Vermont "I'd like to thank you for the great music you brought to us on Saturday night. There was something for everyone - great dynamics, arrangements, and original lyrics." - Beth, librarian, Lincoln, Vermont 'This duo does a variety of familiar singalong tunes and original songs, with harmony and accompaniment (guitar, accordian, banjo, percussion). Songs have a respect for nature and humanity. Good humor abounds, and storytelling is included, too.' - Mary, Youth Services Librarian, Essex Jct., Vermont "You Peepers are terrific! Your performance was really fun and top notch. I'm a fan! I'm very impressed with how much fun you have together, how well you enunciate so that we could hear every word, and how well your bodies, faces, and voices work together, and the songs are just really fun and catchy." -Mimi, mom and education administrator, Weybridge, VT.