Bob Ezrin, the legendary rock producer who helped shape the sound of Pink Floyd’s The Wall, is partnering with Wow! Unlimited Media to create a slate of music-infused kids programming, including a series inspired by the ingenuity and music of Les Paul, the fret-master whose namesake electric guitar has been a beloved brand in the music world since the Truman administration.
Ezrin is famed for his envelope-pushing studio work alongside the likes of Lou Reed, Alice Cooper, Nine Inch Nails, U2, Peter Gabriel, Jane’s Addiction, Aerosmith, Deep Purple, Rod Stewart, and KISS, to name just a few from a career discography that dates back to 1970 and his earliest work with Cooper. That pedigree make the Canadian music maven a unique creative asset as a partner, according to Wow Unlimited CEO Michael Hirsh.
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“Wow! Unlimited Media aims to be one of the world’s leading producers of entertaining and educationally empowering kids programming,” said Hirsh, whose own credits include the hit music series The DoodleBops. “By working with a highly regarded music producer like Bob, we can harness new ways in which we bring engaging music infused content to kids of all ages.”
Ezrin, inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in April 2004, is one of the most successful record producers of the rock era and renowned for his contributions to The Wall, which he co-produced with James Guthrie and Pink Floyd members David Gilmour and Roger Waters. The surreal 1979 masterpiece has sold more than 24 million copies and remains a watershed moment in studio sonic achievement and (along with its namesake tie-in film) a masterpiece of rock operatics. Ezrin would work with Pink Floyd again as the co-producer on Momentary Lapse of Reason and The Division Bell. The producer’s longest creative relationship is with Cooper. Ezrin produced and cowrote Cooper’s 1971 breakthrough, Love It To Death, and worked with Cooper on another dozen albums since that first one.
Ezrin said he was excited to work with Wow and its elite leadership team. Hirsh is considered the godfather of the Canadian animation scene as the founder of Nelvana and Cookie Jar, while Seibert was a producer of all-time animation hits like Adventure Time and The Fairly OddParents and the founder of Federator Studios.
“I’m very happy to be working with this team to generate shows that will wrap kids in the inspiration and excitement that comes from experiencing and making music,” said Ezrin. “As a passionate advocate for music as an essential part of the education and development of the whole child, I am thrilled to be lending my energy to this platform that will empower kids to develop their imaginations and their talent, too.”
Along with the series inspired by Paul, the partnership will begin with a project called Ukulele U, featuring award-winning musician Melanie Doane and a troupe of youngsters who play “kidified” versions of contemporary chart hits. The series is being developed in association with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Wow has already been ramping its animated and live action kids programming for both linear and digital platforms. Now, additionally, the company will be expanding its portfolio of music-focused programming and the initial series on the slate are expected to be ready for distribution later this year, according to Wow founders Hirsh and Fred Seibert.
The upstart company has quickly put itself on the radar with a number of high-end properties including Castlevania, a top rated animation series on Netflix, as well as Costume Quest (Amazon) and Barbie Dreamhouse Adventures (Netflix and Mattel).
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