02202017Mon
Last updateTue, 21 Feb 2017 4pm

News

MVLA stands by response in wake of rape allegation

MVLA stands by response in wake of rape allegation


In light of an ongoing federal investigation of the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District for Title IX violations, district officials are emphasizing communication with parents regarding off-campus incidents.

Last June, a former distr...

Readmore

Loading...

Schools

Families gather to create Cradle to Covington group

Families gather to create Cradle to Covington group


Courtesy of Sandesh Mouli
Los Altos children, clockwise from left, Zara Shah, Kayden Shah, Logan Mouli and Shreya Mouli trick-or-treat together. The children and their parents are members of Cradle to Covington, a social network for parents whose y...

Readmore

Loading...

Community

Director: ECH mental health services expanding

Director: ECH mental health services expanding


Fitzgerald
 

The subject of mental health is being taken more seriously these days.

“More and more people are coming out of their shells and talking about their mental health,” said Michael Fitzgerald, director of El Camino Hospital’s Beh...

Readmore

Loading...

Comment

Letters to the Editor

Where’s coverage of Women’s March?

I am writing regarding the Town Crier’s Feb. 1 article, “LAH resident attends Trump inauguration.”

I find it disappointing in a community where I expect many more people marched as pa...

Readmore

Loading...

Special Sections

YMCA proves a quiet ally in lifelong health for all ages

YMCA proves a quiet ally in lifelong health for all ages


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Students in the El Camino YMCA EnhanceFitness class undergo their exercise regimen.

In the El Camino YMCA’s EnhanceFitness classes, students ages 60 and up get their exercise whether they use a wheelchair or not. On...

Readmore

Loading...

Business

Revelation in Fit celebrates measure of a woman

Revelation in Fit celebrates measure of a woman


Photos by Megan V. Winslow/town crier
Charlotte Nix, manager of Revelation in Fit, introduces the bra library.

At Revelation in Fit, the new lingerie store that opened last week at 386 State St. in Los Altos, the bras in the showroom – seasona...

Readmore

Loading...

People

News

MVLA stands by response in wake of rape allegation

MVLA stands by response in wake of rape allegation

In light of an ongoing federal investigation of the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District for Title IX violations, district officials are emphasizing communication with parents regarding off-campus incidents.

Last June, a former district student initiated a Title IX investigation wit...

Readmore

Business

Revelation in Fit celebrates measure of a woman

Revelation in Fit celebrates measure of a woman

Photos by Megan V. Winslow/town crier
Charlotte Nix, manager of Revelation in Fit, introduces the bra library.

At Revelation in Fit, the new lingerie store that opened last week at 386 State St. in Los Altos, the bras in the showroom – seasonal and, in some cases, rather fashion forward ̵...

Readmore

Sports

Pinewood falters in 4th quarter

Pinewood falters in 4th quarter

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pinewood School’s Jaeden Bailey drives to the basket, defended by Woodside Priory’s Matt Boyle, a Los Altos resident.

Once the momentum swayed Woodside Priory’s way, it seemed there was nothing the Pinewood School boys basketball team could do to stop i...

Readmore

Community

Director: ECH mental health services expanding

Director: ECH mental health services expanding

Fitzgerald
 

The subject of mental health is being taken more seriously these days.

“More and more people are coming out of their shells and talking about their mental health,” said Michael Fitzgerald, director of El Camino Hospital’s Behavioral Health Services.

Readmore

Comment

Letters to the Editor

Where’s coverage of Women’s March?

I am writing regarding the Town Crier’s Feb. 1 article, “LAH resident attends Trump inauguration.”

I find it disappointing in a community where I expect many more people marched as part of the Women’s March the following day th...

Readmore

Spiritual Life

Longtime Foothills Congregational Church pastor retires

Longtime Foothills Congregational Church pastor retires

Foothills Congregational Church in Los Altos bid farewell last month to the Rev. Matt Broadbent, who retired after 17 years of service.

Broadbent and his wife, Barbara, are retiring to a condominium in Aptos. Barbara has served as spiritual director for the Northern California Nevada Conference U...

Readmore

Schools

Families gather to create Cradle to Covington group

Families gather to create Cradle to Covington group

Courtesy of Sandesh Mouli
Los Altos children, clockwise from left, Zara Shah, Kayden Shah, Logan Mouli and Shreya Mouli trick-or-treat together. The children and their parents are members of Cradle to Covington, a social network for parents whose young children will eventually attend Covington Sch...

Readmore

Special Sections

YMCA proves a quiet ally in lifelong health for all ages

YMCA proves a quiet ally in lifelong health for all ages

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Students in the El Camino YMCA EnhanceFitness class undergo their exercise regimen.

In the El Camino YMCA’s EnhanceFitness classes, students ages 60 and up get their exercise whether they use a wheelchair or not. On one recent Tuesday, a handful of students braved ...

Readmore

Stepping Out

Sports on the Side

Showtime to premiere ‘Disgraced’ sports doc

Showtime next month is scheduled to premiere a documentary on the 2003 murder of Baylor University basketball player Patrick Dennehy, a St. Francis High graduate. “Disgraced” tells the story of Dennehy being killed by Baylor teamm...

Readmore

Magazine

Art for superfans: Classical skills find new subjects in the modern art class

Art for superfans: Classical skills find new subjects in the modern art class

From Hermione Granger to "Avatar: The Last Airbender," unconventional subjects are making classical portraits for today’s young painters.

Fan art - drawings inspired by popular characters from books, movies and graphic novels - have long languished in the margins of school notebooks. But student...

Readmore

Doctor Noize: an antidote to Barney


Photo By: Courtesy of Doctor Noize
Photo Courtesy Of Doctor Noize Los Altos native Cory Cullinan, who performs as Doctor Noize, has crafted a career that indulges his love of music and his desire to inspire children in a zany way.

Although Cory Cullinan’s idyllic Los Altos childhood was interrupted by tragic events, the 42-year-old came out smiling.

Now known as Doctor Noize, the former Pinewood School music teacher and soccer coach indulges his passion – teaching children how to appreciate music in a zany way.

His two books – “The Ballad of Phineas McBoof” (Pictoria Books, 2008) and “The Return of Phineas McBoof” (Doctor Noize Inc., 2011) – and CDs are jam-packed with crazy characters, including Phineas, a cheeky monkey.

“It’s a story about McBoof – based on Paul McCartney – and his International Band of Misunderstood Geniuses,” said Cullinan from his home in Colorado, as his two daughters, Sidney Grace, 9, and Riley Max, 7, made noise in the background. “What the band has in common is their openness to trying all kinds of music.”

 

Deep roots

It’s hard to get more excited about music than Doctor Noize.

This is a man on a mission – to help youngsters discover their “song of life” and have the courage to share it, he said.

His work is particularly poignant to him, because his brother, Tracey, a computer genius who passed away from brain cancer at 18, taught him the importance of living life to the fullest. They both attended Los Altos High, and Cory, who was student body president, graduated in 1988.

“It was an amazing thing for me to observe,” Cullinan said of his brother’s illness. “Steve Jobs came to visit him twice, he was interviewed by Jane Pauley because he had started his own computer company.”

Jobs took both boys on a tour of Next Inc., Cullinan recalled.

“I was into soccer, so it didn’t mean much to me, but for Tracey, it was like visiting with Joe Montana,” he said.

Realizing that his brother had already put his mark on the planet by the time he received his cancer diagnosis, Cullinan determined that it was important to have a purpose to one’s life.

“Plus, I had every opportunity anyone could hope for,” he said.

Cullinan’s roots in the community run deep. His father, Terrence, was on the Los Altos City Council and served a stint as mayor. His mother, Leola, was active in the PTA.

Cullinan said his wife, Janette, who voices Backbone the Octopus on his recordings, reminds him of his brother because of her strength in facing life’s obstacles. Legally blind, Janette has worked her way up in the business world of learning design and has been a singer her entire life.

“I knew she would inspire our children,” he said. “Plus, she’s cute – the bomb. She’s the backbone of my life.”

He conducts his concerts interactively, encouraging children to get up on stage. Cullinan sings and plays keyboards, kazoo, guitar, saxophone and percussion.

SiriusXM Live Kids’ Radio has played “The Ballad of Phineas McBoof” several times, and he’s notched a number of top 10 hits on the station. Early on, Dr. Toy named the album a “Best Product,” and it’s also received a Parents’ Choice award.

 

Don’t quit your day job

Not too bad for a Stanford University classical music and political science major.

“I had as few practical skills when I got out as a guy could get,” joked Cullinan, who nonetheless concentrated on releasing his first album, “My Oyster,” after he graduated from college.

Although he said he didn’t come “even close to making a living” with his music, it was used in the Brad Pitt film score for “Spy Game” and on television shows.

Needing a day job, Cullinan called on Pinewood School, which didn’t have a music department at the time. His Music History class became quite popular with students, and the choir he directed produced eight CDs.

“We would write and record songs, then buy more toys for the recording studio, which was really my classroom,” he said.

In Music History, Cullinan prided himself on creating a challenging environment and appealing to sophisticated tastes.

“I don’t do three-chord Barney music,” he said.

In fact, listening to his daughter’s Saturday-morning cartoons inspired him to continue making Doctor Noize records.

His partner, Coert Voorhees, who was an English teacher at Pinewood, convinced him to collaborate on a grammar CD, the newly released 21-track “Grammaropolis,” which includes tunes about how the band spent its summer vacation. Voorhees plays the stuffy mayor of Grammar-opolis, and Doctor Noize defends Slang, an unorthodox – but more creative element – who’s a “word artist,” according to Cullinan.

One funny bit on “Grammar-opolis” showcases a radio program in which Gabby Verbose – a parody of Terry Gross of National Public Radio – interviews the mayor, Slang and Doctor Noize. Placido Flamingo, played by opera star Nathan Gunn, makes an appearance on the CD.

While “Grammaroplis” features a lot of fun wordplay, it’s also educational, clarifying nouns, proper nouns, verbs and adjectives for young learners.

 

Coming attractions

Doctor Noize recently created the iPhone game app Bananas! based on his hit song “Banana” from the McBoof album. It’s been downloaded in 25 countries through the Apple iTunes store.

Next up is his “Phineas McBoof Crashes the Symphony” CD, due May 17. Gunn will once again play Placido Flamingo.

“What I want to do is expose kids to symphonic music – to smart concepts at a younger age,” Cullinan said.

Doctor Noize has scheduled a “Triple Release Party” to celebrate the debuts of “Grammaropolis” and his “Return of Phineas McBoof” book and CD 3:30 p.m. April 1 at Cubberley Community Theatre, 4000 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. Tickets are $10.

For tickets and more information, visit www.doctornoize.com.

essay contest2017

Submit a Letter to the Editor

The Town Crier welcomes letters to the editor on current events pertinent to Los Altos, Los Altos Hills and Mountain View. Write to us at 138 Main St., Los Altos 94022, Attn: Editor, or email editor Bruce Barton at bruceb@latc.com. Because editorial space is limited, please confine letters to no more than 200 words. Include a phone number for verification purposes. Anonymous letters will not be printed.

You can also have your say right here at losaltosonline.com – scroll to the bottom of any story to add a comment. 

Reader Comments

Schools »

Schools
Read More

Sports »

sports
Read More

People »

people
Read More

Special Sections »

Special Sections
Read More

Photos of Los Altos

photoshelter
Browse and buy photos