If you’re going to an Odds Bodkin show this season, consider leaving with an EPIC DRIVE, a BEGINNER DRIVE or a MASTER DRIVE. Credit cards accepted via Square.com.
During the late 1800’s in Colorado, narrow gauge railroads crossed the Great Divide of the Rockies heading for Sante Fe and other parts west. In those days, nothing facilitated the Westward Expansion and what Americans thought of as Manifest Destiny more than the invention of the steam locomotive. The Iron Horse, as it was known.
Various folklores grew up around the railroads, including those of ghostly trains. Much as in earlier seafaring times when folklores centered around phantom ships—the Flying Dutchman being the most famous—where dead souls seeking vengeance chased the living, so too in the early Industrial Age in America similar tales were handed down about the captains of the locomotives. The engineers.
Whether these frightening accounts were actual events or not remains open to debate. Still, they are a part of American mythology.
The attached early map from the Denver and Santa Fe Railroad shows Marshall Pass (in the story, Marshall’s Pass) the topmost rail crossing of the Great Divide. It is at this Rocky Mountain pass that one of the tales I’ll be telling this weekend takes place.
It’s accompanied with a flat-picked score on a Taylor 6-string guitar.
DARK TALES OF THE SUPERNATURAL
Friday, October 19th at 8 p.m. at the Sweet Beet, Bradford, New Hampshire.
An outdoor event. Bring warm clothes, chairs and blankets.
Freshly made hot food and drinks available for purchase.
I first started playing 12-string guitar in the stairwell of my dorm at Duke University. This was some time ago, and over the years I’ve scored all sorts of tales, from epics to short ones, with 12-strings in various tunings. Often folks come up after shows and say something like, “Wow, I could just listen to the music without the story and still be entertained.”
I’ve heard this a lot.
And so, for folks who like to listen to 12-string instrumental music, as well as Celtic harp music (all original stuff), I’ll be doing a 2-hour concert on the sunny porch of the Sweet Beet Market in Bradford, NH this coming Saturday morning at 10:00.
This is part of Bradford’s renowned Fourth of July celebration which takes place this year on June 30th. There’s a full day of fun events all over town.
The event is free and you can grab a chair and fresh breakfast food while you listen. It’s very informal.
Hope to see you there!
One night recently Gavin, my middle son, and I sat down in the living room to play guitars as we often do when he visits. It’s one of our great joys, extemporizing together. He had the Taylor 6-string and I pulled out my Ron Ho 12-string. Since it was his turn to come up with the idea and my turn to follow wherever he went, I sipped my scotch and listened to his music, a bouncy notion in major to start, almost immediately followed by a very different, percussive slap in minor.
“Okay,” I thought, “here we go.”
As almost everybody experiences at one point or another, sometimes you’re just on. In basketball, it’s when you can’t miss those three pointers, one after another. In our case, it was this three-minute blast of acoustic music. Totally spontaneous and joyous, especially when the shape of the idea fully emerged. It felt like telepathy, as if we were reading each other’s minds.
So I’ve taken that piece and named it The Faery Hop: Musical Telepathy for Duo Guitars and published it at my download shop. It’s unedited from start to finish, and you’ll hear my recliner cushion creaking each time I lean in, but it’s fun to listen to, especially when you know how it was created.
There’s a sample of the beginning to listen to at the shop page.
For Father’s Day: Odds Bodkin’s $174.95 MASTER DRIVE on sale for $99!
For you dads out there, a one-day-only sale of Odds Bodkin’s complete works.
25 hours of storytelling for all ages. Original music. Plus Odds’ 555-page epic work of high fantasy in verse, The Water Mage’s Daughter.
HAPPY FATHER’S DAY!
The Collected Works of Odds Bodkin on a flash drive. 25 hours of audio storytelling and music, plus a 555-page epic poem for adult readers, with glossary.
“After sending the email, I wished I had written more. My daughter and I still listen to Little Proto 8 years later ( she’s 18 and I am 61!). We are both thrilled to have more works to surprise and inspire us cross-country…I have tried listening to other books on tape and find my mind wandering after 5 minutes. On the other hand, I am mesmerized by every word and sound on your recordings. I think seeing you perform in person helped fuel our admiration.”
—An Odds Bodkin Listener
Become your own Master of Family Stories! One Master Drive allows you to load any of Odds Bodkin’s storytelling albums onto your children’s media players, or into your car system. All age-coded for appropriate listening, ages four to adult. Includes great tales for teens!
SUMMER IS COMING/Intelligent Learning for Well-Adjusted Children
Here’s a song I wrote and sang long ago with my friend, Steve Schuch. It’s based on my childhood memories of watching The Wizard of Oz with Judy Garland.
Take a listen. It’s free.
“one of the great voices in American storytelling”–WIRED
MOTHER’S DAY SALE! Odds Bodkin’s Master Drive $269.95 now $99 Today Only!
Since every mother should have one for herself and her kids, we’ve slashed our price for this special day. Happy Mother’s Day to all!
SUPER-FAN CHARLOTTE PEZZO PLANS A CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP WITH HER MASTER DRIVE
At Odds Bodkin HQ we received an order for a Master Drive, but then, very quickly, a follow-up email from the customer wondering why she couldn’t download her purchase. We wrote back explaining what a Master Drive was (a heavily loaded flash drive of Odds Bodkin’s collected works) and offered her a refund, but she wrote back:
Thank you so much for your prompt reply. I want all of his works so I will wait for the flash drive. DO NOT CHANGE ANYTHING!
I need it by May 15 at the VERY latest for a long road trip. I will pay more for expedited shipping to ensure it arrives on time if it is necessary. Please advise!!
Thank you and please relay the message about how excited we are to have his entertainment on our road trip. The Odyssey and Proto made our last road trip so much more enjoyable.
It will be so nice to have his whole collection. Thanks again and I look forward to hearing from you!!
As you can imagine, when Odds saw this email he was delighted, and so he wrote to Charlotte personally to ask whether he could share her letter to let others know about the Master Drive. Charlotte wrote back.
Dear Mr. Bodkin,
I was so pleased to receive this email and find out that they did indeed share my excitement with you.
Yes- it is completely fine to quote me and to use my name. After sending the email, I wished I had written more. My daughter and I still listen to Little Proto 8 years later ( she’s 18 and I am 61!). We are both thrilled to have more works to surprise and inspire us cross-country.
I have tried listening to other books on tape and find my mind wandering after 5 minutes. On the other hand, I am mesmerized by every word and sound on your tapes. I think seeing you perform in person helped fuel our admiration.
Anyway, I now have a year old granddaughter that I can’t wait to share your stories with too.
Thanks again from a lifelong fan!! 🙂
STORYTELLING AFICIONADOS DISCOVER ODDS BODKIN’S MASTER DRIVE
The complete works of a master musical storyteller. From folk tales for children to epics for teens and adults. Serious savings on a lifetime of imagination.