Josh Turner was skeptical at first of being a children’s musician.
Today, it’s one of his biggest passions.
Turner, a 2007 graduate of South Whidbey High School, recently released his new album “Feelings” under the pseudonym of Mr. Josh. His aim is to help children between the ages of 0 to 6 cope and process emotions they may face on a daily basis, from being embarrassed to experiencing sadness.
He plays the guitar and sings, while he also recorded, mixed and mastered the entire collection from the closet of his home in Tacoma.
“It feels like there’s a piece of me that has been put into the album that I can give to the kids,” Turner said. “It will help them navigate themselves and their lives.”
Turner has been a musician since he was 16. He learned the basic fundamentals of music through private guitar and vocal lessons at Joe’s Music, a small shop in Langley that has since closed.
Turner lives with his wife and 11-month-old child and teaches preschool in North Seattle. He regularly wrote children’s songs to fulfill preschool curriculum needs for music-themed instruction, but decided to take it a step further when it was received positively both by the kids and their parents.
He avoided it at first, however, because he had always associated children’s music with clowns and goofiness.
“That wasn’t me,” Turner said. “That wouldn’t be authentic for me to do that.”
While Turner says plenty of humor and goofiness can be found in the album, the majority of the content is true to who he is as a person and a musician. It also strives to address problems children experience and in most cases have difficult processing.
“I bring a lot of humor to feelings that could otherwise be very heavy and dark,” Turner said.
Turner has a song called “Embarrassed” on his album. While the song is “silly” and can make kids laugh and have fun, Turner says the children can still take in the information he’s presenting. It covers everything from what the feelings are, when it can happen and ways to handle it.
Turner has more content planned for the next few years, including two more children’s music albums as well as one intended for adults.
“My ultimate goal is to continue to write and play music for kids that is impactful and that matters to them, while still being authentic,” Turner said.
Physical copies can be purchased at joshuaturnermusic.com/mrjosh, while digital copies can be purchased on iTunes, Amazon, and most all online digital music stores.