Influences and Beginnings

 

There is a lot of talk of beginnings and influences.  There are those who grew up listening to OTR, were inspired by War of the Worlds, and Firesign Theatre and Chickenman and a hundred other shows.  Having lived in a trailer in the middle of the Leatherstocking country region of New York, where our only forms of media entertainment were a little black-and-white TV (that could barely tune in Buck Rogers and Hee Haw if you put foil on the rabbit ears and set them just right) and a Hi-fi stereo system (the kind with the record player on top and the recordable 8-track player built in),  I am definitely part of that camp.

There are those of us who were inspired by Ben Burt and Randy Thom and everything Star Wars.  Being from a family where taking the family out on a Friday night involved piling the kids in the car and going to the drive in for a Star Wars/Corvette Summer, Mark Hamill double feature (Sadly, I didn’t become aware of Annie Pots until  Ghostbusters came along), I can definitely say that I made pew pew, woozh noises accompanied by bad James Earl Jones impersonations.

More than all of these, though, I think my greatest influences came from a Fisher Price record player (mine played 78s) and a series of story records, music records, a portable cassette recorder with a microphone, and a lot of time to explore storytelling through the world of sound.

One particular record was a comic and record combination that had Spider-Man Invasion of the Dragonmen on one side and The Mark of the Man-Wolf on the other.  So in a fit of nostalgia and while I’m finishing up final touches on A Prophet’s Guide, I thought I might share both with you today:

While we all of some shared influences that unite us, it is our unique experiences that shape us?  What childhood experiences helped shape you?