Milwaukee singer-songwriter Trapper Schoepp celebrates Elvis Presley's favorite ride The Zippin Pippin and the other classic rides at the Bay Beach Amusement Park in Green Bay, WI. The six-song collection, Bay Beach Amusement Park, takes listeners on six different rides, each song named for its respective ride ("Zippin Pippin," "Bumper Cars," "The Scat" etc.). The spark for the concept album was Trapper riding the Pippin, one of America's oldest wooden roller coasters which was relocated from Libertyland in Memphis to Green Bay in 2010.
After writing "Zippin Pippin," Trapper listened in on kids' humorous conversations at the park. Some utterances, hastily transcribed as iPhone notes, appear verbatim in songs. The jazziest tune on the album, "The Scat," takes lines from a boy exclaiming a nightmarish experience on the spinning gravitron ride. The lyrics merge the exciting, romantic, and surreal aspects Schoepp attributes to the park. "Ferris Wheel" is a story song of two brothers whose wildest wish comes true. After screaming "we wish this never ends" in unison, the ferris wheel becomes an anthropomorphic, unstoppable ride – despite the best efforts of the FBI and the brothers' meddling mother to shut it down. "Tilt-A-Whirl" is about a high school senior's crush on the ride's operator, who's spending her last summer in Green Bay before college.
"Welcome to Bay Beach!" is a surf-rocker that tells some park history (FDR visited in 1934) and shares the Bay Beach legend of a little boy named Eddie who wasn't tall enough to ride but ignored the warning. As the story goes, the boy slid down the kid-friendly giant slide and flew into the bay, never to be seen again. First single "Bumper Cars," finds pop culture rivalries like Jerry Seinfeld and Newman and the Jedi and Sith collide on the ride. The stories are set to a ‘50s inspired rock and roll sound – a nod to musicians like Buddy Holly and Chuck Berry. Recorded mostly live over a weekend at Pachyderm Studios in Cannon Falls, MN, the album features a 5-piece band and the Riverside Horns. The album was produced by an 18-year-old Minnesotan named Eliot Skinner.