Grab your ‘Bananaphone’ and cue up ‘Finding Raffi,’ a series all about the singer and his activism
Raffi Cavoukian crafted many hopeful, toe-tapping, sing-along bangers of yore, and is one of the most famous and iconic children’s musicians of all time. If you were a kid in the 1980s or 1990s, it’s possible your kindergarten teacher brought Raffi’s cassette tapes into the classroom to share the universal and happy song topics, whimsical wordplay with positive messages, and fun rhyme-schemes. We’re talking about “Baby Beluga,” “Bananaphone,” “Willoughby Wallaby Woo,” and “Apples and Bananas,” just to name a few.
Most importantly, Raffi gave a voice to kids and showed adults that their opinions matter. Raffi wholeheartedly believed in the growth potential of impressionable minds. In iHeartPodcasts and Fatherly’s 10-part series, “Finding Raffi,” Raffi will chat about his life, philosophies, music, activism for climate action, and more.
“Finding Raffi” is hosted by writer, comedian, and dad Chris Garcia who also hosts “Scattered Podcast.” Begin the series from episode one to hear the story in sequential order, with episodes running under 45 minutes a pop. In episodes, we’ll also hear from Chris’ family and Raffi’s friends, fans, and collaborators.
In his amazing career, Raffi released 24 albums and was nominated for 3 GRAMMYs. But how did this Hawaiian shirt and moccasin-wearing dude with an acoustic guitar seem to cast spells over live audiences filled with even the most unruly gaggles of kids? Raffi created universal declarations in his songs for kids, geared toward connection and inclusivity. During the pandemic, the lyrics of his songs resonate more than ever, such as, “The more we get together the happier we’ll be.” Because at the end of the day, humans are wired to connect with one another.
Raffi speaks about the catharsis of his career, his quest for acceptance in North America when his family immigrated from Egypt, and his call for everyone to wake up and pay attention. This call came via his lyrics on life, the destruction of the planet, happiness, respect, et al. In this series, we also learn about Raffi’s advocacy for peace.
Season one was titled “Finding Fred,” all about Fred Rogers from the beloved kids series, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.
The first few episodes of “Finding Raffi” are now streaming, with new episodes released weekly.