They say everything is bigger in Texas and that just might be true, as we look back at our visit to the Lone Star State and our biggest tour yet! We had a fantastic time debuting our youth financial education music performances following the recent release of our new kids album, “The Secret to Being Rich.”
Our shows featured many of our financial education songs, as well as some fun discussion with students about savings and being careful with money. We played for over 1,000 students on the tour and while it’s hard to condense all of the awesome things that happened into one blog post, here’s our attempt at doing so!
Day 1: Beaumont, Nederland and Vidor, Texas – Sponsored by FivePoint Credit Union
The first day of the tour was a busy one, with a total of four shows lined up throughout the day. Two shows were for pre-K and 1st grade audiences and we played in school gymnasiums (one was even decked out in pirate flags since their school mascot was a pirate – perfect for our “Kidd Silver” song!). For the other two shows, we were fortunate to play in the very impressive Nederland School Performing Arts Center for large groups of 2nd and 3rd graders.
At both shows for the older group, we were asked to play encores of “Thank my Piggy Bank” as the kids sang and screamed along with the chorus. Our “smash hit” with kids made us feel like The Beatles for a brief second! Afterwards, we took pictures with the students and so many of them were excited to talk about their piggy banks and what they were saving for. We wish we had more time to talk with them all, but encouraged them to keep up the great work and talk with their parents, credit union and teachers about how to make their savings dreams come true.
We were lucky to also be joined by FivePoint CU’s mascot Starbit, who was a trooper and danced with us at every show. Click here to watch a video snippet from the arts center and here are some pictures from the day:
Day 2: Ft. Worth and Azle, Texas – Sponsored by Tarrant County Credit Union
After a flight to Ft. Worth, day 2 of the tour kicked off in a neat old school auditorium (pictured at the top of this post) where we played to a large crown of 3rd through 5th graders. This was followed by a fun Q & A session with the kids where we talked about more money tips, our musical backgrounds and how we are not, in fact, brothers.
The second show venue probably had the most elaborate stage set as it was a elementary school cafeteria decorated for a Valentine’s Day assembly. The school’s 3rd and 4th graders sat on the floor and had a great time singing and moving to our songs about money! Again, we were asked if we were brothers or cousins. Again, the answer was no.
Both groups proved to be excited and very ambitious about their savings goals. When we asked them what they were saving up for, their answers included “a house”, “a car” and “money for college tuition” — impressive, right? We led the kids through a quick exercise to demonstrate the difference between wants and needs and encouraged them to keep their dreams big while also being realistic, which we hope was helpful for the few kids who said they needed a Ferrari or a mansion!
More pictures are below:
Day 3: Dallas, Texas
The third and last day of the tour culminated with a performance at the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation’s FOCUS Summit in Dallas. The conference is for financial education advocates (credit union professionals and others) and we got to kick it off with our interactive education session called “The Power of Song – Amping up Financial Education”. We played some of our new kids songs and shared insight on the creative process, experiential learning and the power of music and humor in education. It was also a lot of fun getting the adults to shout the infamous pirate “ARGH!” just like the kids had been doing the past two days (click here for a video snippet).
We were followed on the agenda by Jean Chatzky, bestselling author and financial editor of NBC’s Today Show, who we met afterwards and later that day, she even had some nice words to say about our performance on her Facebook page. Here are some pictures of the performance and The Disclosures posing with Ms. Chatzky afterwards:
Also, as a nice surprise, the local news was there (KTXD-TV) and we are featured in a segment about Jean Chatzky at 0:30 here:
All in all, our time in Texas was extremely gratifying and something we’ll never forget and we had tons of fun interacting with the students. One teacher said that after the show kids were “pumped” about savings and “singing their hearts out.” Another said she “so enjoyed the program” and her “class was singing it all day!” And Mandy Clayton with FivePoint Credit Union said:
“The Disclosures, Chad and Chris, are truly fabulous! They have an amazing way of bringing music with a mission of financial education that is fun for students and they don’t even realize they are learning. It’s an awesome sound to hear elementary school students belting out songs about thanking my piggy bank and saving for their needs & wants, that’s when you know they really get it.”
Thanks again to FivePoint Credit Union and Tarrant County Credit Union for making this tour possible and taking good care of us (special thanks to Mandy and Tawna!). Also, big thanks to Courtney and the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation for inviting us to their FOCUS Summit and let us “warm up” for Jean Chatzky!
The album, called “The Secret to Being Rich”, features ten original songs for ages 10 and under that incorporate core financial literacy concepts including saving, responsible spending, the importance of charity, dangers of “too good to be true” advertising and even the basics of how loans work.
Furthermore, the album’s overall theme ties into its tongue-in-cheek title, which is meant to convey to kids that being ‘rich’ takes hard work and discipline, and that you can also be wealthy in friends, family and other things in life that can matter much more than the money in your wallet.
All songs were written by Chad Helminak and Christopher Morris, who perform as band “The Disclosures” outside of their day jobs within the credit union industry.
“We’ve found that music and humor can be very effective ways of reinforcing learning,” said Morris. “Since we both work closely financial education programs in our day jobs, we knew this was an important direction to take our music in and help a young audience learn about these topics.”
Morris and Helminak have also developed discussion topics for teachers and parents, as well as a classroom performance which they’ll be debuting in Texas elementary school tour in February, 2014.
“The Secret to Being Rich” album is available for download on all major digital music stores such as iTunes, Amazon and others. Physical CDs also can be purchased at cdbaby.com, and The Disclosures will also be processing bulk orders of CDs at discount for purchase by financial institutions, schools or youth organizations. All ordering information and additional resources can be found on thedisclosuresmusic.com.
Earlier this year, The Disclosures released “Thank My Piggy Bank,” the first single and video from the album. The video was filmed around town at the Madison Children’s Museum, Capitol Kids, and Summit Credit Union.
A record release party is scheduled for December 20th at DreamBank in Madison. Details are online here.
Click here for more information about The Disclosures.
This is your chance to meet and hear The Disclosures (Christopher Morris & Chad Helminak) – musicians with a mission – and also purchase first print copies of their new album. The album has 10 songs that use music and humor to introduce lessons about money, savings, responsible spending and more.
Live acoustic performance at 6:30. All ages are welcome and encouraged to come!
Friday, December 20th | 6:00 – 7:30 PM
1 N. Pinckney Street
(On Madison’s Capitol Square)
You can RSVP on Facebook here & hope to see you there!
We’re happy to announce that our new kids album, “The Secret to Being Rich”, will be released worldwide on December 10, 2013. The album has 10 songs that use music and humor to introduce lessons about money, savings, responsible spending and more.
It will be the first of its kind and available where ever you download music digitally (iTunes, Amazon, Napster, etc). We will also be selling physical copies of the album on CD at shows/events where we perform as well as online at stores such as CDbaby.com, Amazon and others.
Above is the back cover of the CD (in case you missed it, here’s the cover art). Thanks again goes to Lesley Clark from Sissybird Design for creating all the artwork for our album. Also thanks to Morriss Partee/Squirrel Trench Audio for his fantastic work mixing and mastering on the album.
Without further ado, here is the tracklisting for “The Secret to Being Rich”:
- Money, Moola, Dinero, Dough
- I Want, I Need
- Won’t You Be My Money Buddy?
- The Tale of Kidd Silver, the Savviest Pirate to Ever Sail the Seas
- Thank My Piggy Bank
- Captain Smartmoney vs. Dr. Greedypants
- Spend, Save, Give
- Too Good to Be True
- The Secret to Being Rich
Look for more information coming soon on our record release party and other album-related news. We can’t wait to share our music with you!
We are pleased to release the first glimpse of our album art for “The Secret to Being Rich” slated to release in December, 2013! The forthcoming kids album uses music and humor to introduce lessons about money, savings and responsible spending.
We owe a huge thanks to Lesley Clark from Sissybird Design for putting together this wonderful front cover. She’s working on all of the album art for us and every bit of it looks amazing. Thanks Lesley!
What’s the album going to sound like? In case you missed it, on April 2nd, we released the song and video for “Thank My Piggy Bank”, the first single from the album. Stay tuned for the tracklisting and more details on our album between now and December. We can’t wait to share it with you!
In honor of International Credit Union Day, Credit Union Magazine is publishing a special bonus issue, which is dedicated to credit union rock stars – “ordinary people who are doing the extraordinary.” Forty-eight rock stars were selected based on their passion and drive to put bright ideas into action and champion the credit union ideal of “people helping people.”
The Disclosures were lucky enough to be included in the special issue and are honored to be recognized. We are in such great company as the issue is bursting with stories of amazing people from across the movement!
We can’t say this enough too – a huge THANK YOU to our employers, colleagues, family, friends and fans for your support and encouragement. You guys rock!
We wanted to let you know about two upcoming family-oriented shows around Wisconsin. They’ll both also be featuring our new and fun financial education songs for kids off of our forthcoming album “The Secret to Being Rich.”
First, we had so much fun playing at DreamBank on Madison’s Capitol Square as part of Make Music Madison this past summer, that we’ll be playing there as part of their “Family Saturdays” series. Here are the details:
Saturday, October 26, 2013 | 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
DreamBank – One North Pinckney, Madison, WI
Click Here for the event page on the DreamBank website for more information
We are also excited to be performing a session of our new songs at the Fox Cities Money Conference next month. This should be a great event as it’s a full-day financial education conference for youth and families in Appleton. Here are the details:
Saturday, November 3, 2013 | 8:30 am – 3:30 pm (we’ll most likely be playing mid-day)
11th Annual Fox Cities Money Conference – Fox Valley Technical College, 1825 N. Bluemound Dr., Appleton, WI
Click here for the event flyer for more information and registration
Hope to see you at either of those events!
The Disclosures are very excited to perform at the third annual Co-op Connection in Madison – a local “celebration of cooperatives and community” – alongside Pat McCurdy and David Landau. We played at the very first Co-op Connection in 2011 at the Monona Terrace and can’t wait to play this year as it is off the Capital Square Dane County Farmer’s Market!
The free event is hosted by Summit Credit Union and they’ll be joined at the event by local cooperatives sharing their stories. You can expect family activities, live entertainment, prize drawings, free product samples and more.
Saturday, October 5, 2013 | 8:30 am -1 pm | Martin Luther King Blvd in Madison, Wisconsin
We are slated to play at 9:25 am and 12:30 pm. The first set will be full of our new youth financial education songs so bring your kids! The second set will be made up of our original co-operative and credit unions songs mixed in with a few of our favorite covers.
Hope to see you there!
As you might have noticed, we’ve taken a little break from recording our forthcoming youth financial education album to play a few exciting shows in various places this summer.
First, we played at Capitol Kids and Dreambank on the capitol square in Madison as part of the first Make Music Madison, a city-wide celebration of music. We played a special set of kids music, including new songs we’ve been recording.
A few weeks later, we traveled to West Yellowstone in Montana to play at the Mountain Regional Credit Union Roundtable. We performed our “Credit Unions Rock! Getting in Tune with our Roots and Philosophy” education session for attendees and played some music after dinner at the historic Union Pacific Dining Hall. Combining some of the best acoustics we’ve heard in the hall with a great group made it an awesome experience.
We also were invited to perform at the fundraiser for CUNA Management School in Madison, which was a lot of fun. As a bonus, they gave us some glow bracelets and necklaces while we were performing. Also for the first time in the band’s history, Chad played electric guitar live.
Now the rest of our forthcoming album beckons, which we are looking forward to finishing writing and recording. All in all, we’re having a blast this summer and hope you are too!
We are pleased to announce that The Disclosures will be performing at the upcoming Mountain Regional Credit Union Roundtable taking place in beautiful West Yellowstone, Montana on July 9-11, 2013.
The event was developed for senior credit union management and board members from the following states: Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Arizona, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Utah.
On July 9th, we’ll be performing our music-driven “Credit Unions Rock! Getting in Tune with our Roots and Philosophy” session for attendees, which has been described as a credit union version of “VH1 Storytellers.” After dinner, The Disclosures will be the evening’s entertainment at the historic Union Pacific Dining Hall.
Hope to see you there!