Fred Penner on the joys of helping kids and adults connect with music

Fred Penner returns with his 13th kids' album, Hear the Music, which finds the Canadian icon collaborating with a number of notable musicians. Today, he performs songs from the album with the help of The Good Lovelies.
Fred Penner performing live in the q studios in Toronto, Ont. (Cathy Irving/CBC)

It is no exaggeration to call Fred Penner a Canadian icon. 

He hosted Fred Penner's Place on CBC Television from 1985 to 1997, where songs like "The Cat Came Back" became instant classics. Among his many awards are two Junos and the Order of Canada. Now, he's back with his 13th kids' album, Hear the Music (out now).

Hear the Music finds Penner teaming up with a number of notable Canadian artists, such as Basia Bulat, Ron Sexsmith and Alex Cuba. For someone who doesn't collaborative often, Penner really enjoyed this experience. "There was a range of talent lining up, ready to step in and I was just so delighted that all these people were excited to be part of this, be part of my musical world," he explains. 

Today, Penner joins Tom Power in the q studios, with guests The Good Lovelies, to perform songs from Hear the Music and to discuss his career in kids' music, performing for nostalgic adults and connecting with people through music. 

— Produced by Jean Kim


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