The News Courier in Athens, Alabama


October 14, 2013

Swindells publish children’s songbook 20 years in making

Do butterflies cry? That’s a reasonable question for a 4-year-old. But when the child’s parents are the popular singer-musician-songwriter duo of Bill and Tina Murrah Swindell it becomes fodder for a children’s song.

The Swindells, along with their daughter, Kacey Swindell, now 27, have published “Sing Along Songs,” illustrated by Roddie Lott of Decatur.

It was a collaboration begun more than 20 years ago. The Swindells are known for their work with the popular dance band, Valley Cats, and the female gospel group, Sister Grace.

“Bill asked me awhile back if I was ever going to do anything with this beautiful artwork and the songs we had written, so I got in touch with Roddie Lott and bought the paintings from him and went ahead with getting it published,” said Tina.

“It’s been a long time on my back burner and I’m glad to get it off.”

The songbook, which includes a pocketed CD of the singalong songs with Bill Swindell playing backup on guitar and keyboard and singing harmony to Tina, is available at Pablo’s on Market

“We’re going to have a book signing and we hope to coordinate it with the Storytelling Festival and organize a children’s singalong to go with it,” said Tina.

Tina said she places the birth of the project as being at the dinner table when Kacey was a tot of 3 or 4.

“We could never get her to eat her vegetables,” she said. “We were in the dining room — and I can see her now in her highchair at the end of the table. I sang to her, ‘Better eat your carrots and your roast beef, too,’ and Bill chimed in with ‘Yum, yum in your tum, tum, too.’

“It kind of evolved from there.”

Once the couple wrote and composed the songs, which include such titles as “Swing, Swing, Swing”; “Rain Falling”; “Yum Yum in my Tum Tum Tum”; “Chasing My Shadow”; “Flowerbed the Tree”; and “Cars and Trucks,” they approached a good friend and artist, Roddie Lott, who then lived in Athens.

Lott illustrated the book using Kacey Swindell and his son, Sam, who is the same age, as his models. Once the project lost steam, the illustrations sat unused in his attic for nearly 25 years.

Tina said that years ago she pitched the project to Random House Publishing.

“Might as well start at the top,” she said. “Well, Random House called and the woman said it had gotten as far as the ‘round table’ level, which apparently is a group of the final decision makers. While they said they really liked it, they suggested I pursue it with a smaller publisher.”

So, after all these years, Tina decided to go with self-publishing.

The News Courier will publish the time for the upcoming book signing at Pablo’s on Market.


Text Only
Top Local News
Today's Local Feature
State and Nation
Local Sports
Calendar of Events
  • Limestone Ledger 7/31/14

    Walking Horse Show

    The third annual Sam Gibbons Walking Horse Show has been rescheduled for 6 p.m. Friday at the Sheriff's Rodeo Arena. More information: Sandy Thompson 256-771-7578.

    July 31, 2014

  • Church Bulletin 7/31/14
Business Marquee
Weather Radar

Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

None of the above
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.