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Butterfly in the sky: 'Reading Rainbow' gets remix treatment

December 05, 2012|By Deborah Netburn

Butterfly in the sky
I can fly twice as high ...

Children of the '80s, this one is for you: The beloved kids' show "Reading Rainbow" and its host LeVar Burton are the latest PBS icons to get the remix treatment, thanks to the efforts of PBS Digital Studios and the Auto-Tune song maker John D. Boswell, a.k.a. Melody Sheep.

PBS Digital Studios started its remixing project in June with its most popular (and I'd argue best) video, "Garden of Your Mind," featuring Fred Rogers (i.e., Mister Rogers). It's weird and almost creepy, but also wonderful and magical. I'm going to embed it right here.

That video was followed by a remix of everyone's favorite TV painting teacher, Bob Ross. It was called "Happy Little Clouds" (of course) and was also borderline creepy, while also being totally awesome.

Then came a remix featuring Julia Child. And finally, "Reading Rainbow."

Flavorwire blogger Caroline Stanley said she wishes Boswell would incorporate "Reading Rainbow's" classic sticks-in-your-brain theme song into the remix video: Butterfly in the sky/I can fly twice as high/take a look/it's in a book/the Reading Rainbow.

I agree. I love these remixes, but are they starting to feel played? Too expected?

"Reading Rainbow" went off the air in 2006, but this year Burton and a business partner launched a Reading Rainbow app for the iPad that gives young readers access to hundreds of books. Just 36 hours after its release, it became the No. 1 education app. 

Maybe in 20 years, today's youth will be watching a hologram remix of LeVar Burton with the Reading Rainbow app.

ALSO:

Mr. Rogers remix video: Weird, awesome, and still kid friendly

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Behind the app: Reading Rainbow a new frontier for LeVar Burton

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