Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin

Was sad to read that Lloyd Moss, author of one of Owen’s very favorite books, passed away:

Mr. Moss had long made listeners of WQXR chuckle during such staples of drive-time radio as traffic reports — after one that said “traffic in both lanes on the bridge is suspended,” he ad-libbed, “Come to think of it, so is the bridge.”

When a relative pressed him to write a children’s book, he decided to introduce children to musical instruments, and turned to rhyme: “The strings all soar, the reeds implore, the brasses roar with notes galore. It’s music that we all adore, it’s what we go to concerts for.”

The book, “Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin” (1995), illustrated by Marjorie Priceman, was named a Caldecott Honor book for illustration in 1996. Marvin Hamlisch later composed a score for it. Mr. Moss narrated the world premiere in Pittsburgh in 1998 and the New York premiere at Alice Tully Hall the next year.

“The dictum for many writers is, ‘Write about what you know,’ ” he said. “Music is what I know.”

Here’s a video from Reading Rainbow of Gregory Hines reading the book.

NYPR Archives remembers Christopher Reeve, who was born yesterday in 1952.  Listen to his interview with Lloyd Moss on WQXR’s This is My Music, where he talks about the roles he played on film and stage, and the need for more actors to return to the repertory theater.  Reeve also discusses the music that he grew up with and his teenage years as a touring madrigal singer.

Image of Christopher Reeve, 1985, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.