The Dragonfly Races
Parents Choice Foundation, Silver Award
"The Dragonfly Races" is Ellis' 14th album and marks Ellis' debut into the family/children’s genre. It began with the birth of his second daughter, when Ellis took time off the road for 6 weeks, the longest amount of time in his 15 year touring career. Late nights of pacing the floor while singing Sofi to sleep, Ellis decided to use his songwriting skills to create lyrics and music comprised of the messages he wanted to pass on to his daughters as they grow.
The songs on the album are intended to be sweet and playful yet insightful and thoughtful. Written in true to form Ellis Paul style of compelling and witty story telling; each song will bring both parents and children into a picture that Ellis paints with each lyric. Themes of peace, unity, and a sense of the planet as a whole underlie the album with grace rather than overstatement. To make the CD even more special, Ellis has married his drawing and painting skills with his music; all the artwork is done by Ellis, fulfilling his dream of putting the two together. The songs and artwork are clearly meant to be enjoyed by children as well as adults and promises to be a significant addition to the genre of family music.
"Paul is one of folkdom's most incisive and intimate songwriters. Now a doting father, his first family album, "The Dragonfly Races," bubbles with buoyant, hummable songs that appeal to kids and parents - and incite good conversations between them. As simple as the songs are, they don't duck tough issues; a fairy tale, for instance, becomes a timely political allegory about leaders who peddle fear for their own purposes. Paul sings movingly about what really worries new parents and turns lazy dragonflies, gentle monsters, and resilient roses into useful metaphors for world peace, the power of faith, and the delights of a sleepy day. It's nice to see a worldclass songwriter focus on kids without lowering either his sights or his standards
- Scott Alarik, The Boston Globe