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Over A Cardboard Sea Makes a Gurgling Splash

Venue: One Longfellow Square, Portland ME ~ October 2, 2010

Nov 8, 2010
Kimmy Sophia Brown

Calling on Bosco, Betty Boop and Steamboat Willie, makeroom for Over a Cardboard Sea! What shenanigans! What hoopla! What a bunchatwenty three skidoo!

The Maine-based vaudeville band that expands or contractsfrom quartet (four) to nonet (nine), (depending on who knows what mystery?!), opened for Miss Tess and the Bon Ton Parade, on a lovely October evening at One Longfellow Square. Charming head vocalist, Timmy Findlen, whose voice recalls Rudy Vallee or Al Jolson, hammed it up wearing a porkpie hat while strumming a ukulele and mini-banjo. He also inspired shock and awe in the audience as he coaxed out the haunting melody of “Shine on Harvest Moon”, from the singing saw. The dashing Jimmy Dority, wearing a newsboy cap, harmonized and strummed a tenor guitar, and the lovely Rachel Miller, harmonized on vocals. She also plays keyboards with the band on some occasions. The peerless brother and sister hand-manualist duo of Burdie & David Burd, (AKA hand fartists), contributed their rare and skillful expertise squeezing tunes out of their palms while inhabiting personaes reminescent of deadpan, Droopy Dog and coquetteish, Olive Oyl. David also played drums and Burdie tra-la-ed and danced through all their numbers.

The band has carved out an adorable and unique niche withtheir renditions of really old songs, sound effects and corny jokes. They generate a lot of old time fun and resurrect songs that our grandparents or perhaps, great grandparents may have loved. Songs performed include, “Paper Moon”, (from whence they got the band name, Over A Cardboard Sea,) “Hold that Tiger”, “By the Beautiful Sea”,“How Ya Gonna Keep Em Down on the Farm”, “Give My Regards to Broadway” (with a handfart solo!), “Yankee Doodle” the theme from The Flintstones, including a handfart solo and the old GeorgeFormby hit, “I’m Leanin’ on a Lampost”.

I think it’s great that somebody is perpetuating the hitparade of the turn of the century, the twentieth century, that is. These old gems are enjoyable and fun, and it’s fantastic that Over A Cardboard Sea is right herein Maine. We don’t have to travel far to experience wholesome entertainment.

By the way, you can catch them at The State Theater, inPortland, Maine, on December 3rd, 2010, when they’re going to a play a show prior to the screening of “The Wizard of Oz”. Don’t miss it! For more details, here’s the link:

1930s Night at the State Theater

Here’s links to their Facebook and MySpace pages:

Over A Cardboard Sea's Facebook page

Over A Cardboard Sea's Myspace page

And a link to their vinyl record label:

Eternal Otter Records

For music lovers visiting Portland, Maine, I highly recommend
One Longfellow Square ~ "Portland's Premier Arts Venue"
Check them out at

Kimmy Sophia Brown has loved humor and music and freedom for as long as she can remember.She is especially passionate about the environment and caring for animals.

She writes the column "From the Back Porch" as well as reviews of music in her column "MusicViews". Her goal in her music reviews is to introduce music she loves to people who may not have heard that particular artist or CD. For information about how to submit a CD for review, click here.

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