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Professional Recording Released of Winning ‘Song for West Hartford’

Kamran Batchelder stars in the professional recording of a music video of "My Little Town," the winning entry in the "Song for West Hartford" contest. Screenshot

The West Hartford Public Library has released a professional music video of the winning ‘My Little Town,’ featuring its singer/songwriter/musician, 8-year-old Kamran Batchelder.

By Ronni Newton

“West Hartford is the place to be,” sings 8-year-old Kamran Batchelder, providing accompaniment on his ukulele in the newly-released professional music video of his winning entry in the song-writing contest held by the West Hartford Public Library last summer.

Kamran’s song, “My Little Town,” was originally filmed in his garden by his father, Dean Batchelder, and was chosen from among 24 entries in the “Song for West Hartford” contest held during June and July of 2020.

Kamran, a third-grader at Montessori Magnet at Batchelder in Hartford, said last summer that when he heard about the contest and decided to enter, “I brainstormed ideas about different things that I love about West Hartford and ways I would describe it. There are things on my list that are great about the town that I couldn’t put in the song, but I tried to include as many as I could.”

He’s written other songs as well – about the seasons, and a song for his school. In addition to playing the ukulele, Kamran takes piano lessons.

“I brought a team of music teachers together, and we listened and ranked the songs,” Andrew Mayo, supervisor of the West Hartford Public Schools Department of Performing Arts, said in August when the winner and runners up were announced.

Kamran’s song, which Mayo called “Just the cutest. Also, the most singable as a shared song,” earned him not only the notoriety of being the singer/songwriter of the first “Song for West Hartford,” but also a $500 prize, donated by the Thomas F. Kilfoil Bequest.

Entries were judged by how well they evoked the town’s spirit, and songs with the words “West Hartford” in the lyrics were encouraged. The performance was also a factor in the decision.

“West Hartford rocks with talent and creativity,” Interim Library Director Carol Waxman said in a statement. “We are so proud of this young musician and his imaginative song.”

The music video, which was produced by Rich Wright Productions, was filmed in Blue Back Square near the Noah Webster Library and includes scrolling lyrics.

“West Hartford is the place to be; A great place for you and for me; A town with and open door, a town that sees more; If you were here for a minute you’d see …” Kamran sings.

The original version of “My Little Town” can be found here.

Click here to also hear the second and third place entries, submitted by Sam Moffatt and Christopher Rauch.

The professional video of “My Little Town” was produced by Rich Wright Productions, was filmed in Blue Back Square near Noah Webster Library and includes scrolling lyrics.

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