Myth Songs



     So why are there 14 in the Olympian Dozen? What did Hermes tell the hero Perseus that he'd better do, or what would be the result? And why was the Norseman scared of riding on the eight- leggéd horse? These questions and many more are succinctly and lightheartedly answered on MYTH SONGS, a new CD by mythology pro- fessor and singer-songwriter Nick Humez.

     Warmly received by listeners from middle school matinees to retirement-community soirées,

 these 17 didactic ditties were first  written and performed for my mythology classes at a New Jersey state university. At the enthusiastic urging of my students, MYTH SONGS will now be available for teachers and folklore aficionados — and just for fun. This CD is a foot- tappingly memorable way to learn about the gods, monsters, heroes, creation stories, and epic adventures that have thrilled the Western world for over four millennia.

   The composer is backed by a stellar ensemble including folk scene veterans Barbara Truex, Vincent Pasternak, Mederick Bellaire and Eric (“Dueling Banjos”) Weissberg, with pianist Pete Levin, percussionist Ken Lovelett, Carl Dimow on Irish pennywhistle, Catherine  Gordon-Seifert on harpsichord, and Susan Middleton on supporting vocals. An eclectic mix of styles includes Norse calypso, Cajun-Canaanite swing, Gilbert & Sullivan patter-song, Victorian parlor waltz, British Isles a cappella polyphony, good old-fashioned country string band, and a soupçon of Spike Jones. A complete set of annotated lyrics embellished by session photos is included in the CD's insert booklet.

   Our motto: “A myth sung is a myth remembered.”  Now MYTH SONGS offers bright youth and snow-crowned age alike these grand old stories, set to new and memorable tunes — an hour of educational entertainment at its classic best.

     What the reviewers are saying:

       Anyone who has an interest in mythology – or a need to know who’s who in the Trojan War – will have great fun listening to this CD....You can learn more than mythology from this unconven- tional teacher; his songs communicate humor...and a toe-tapping good time.”                                          —Sybil Archibald, MATTERS Magazine    


The core conspirators (l. to r.: Vinnie, Barb, Nick.

   “Funny, erudite, and bracingly down-to- earth...a basic mythology course compressed onto a single CD. Humez enlisted 10 accomplished musicians to accompany his solo vocals on instru- ments including violin, guitar, mandolin, harpsichord, piano, dulcimer, string bass, and Irish pennywhistle. The overall effect is something like The Clancy Brothers Play Joseph Campbell's Greatest Hits.     —Craig Lambert, HARVARD Magazine

     [C]harmingly irreverent and painstakingly detailed….Humez manages to present the gods (randy Zeus) as plain folks whose actions (Now jealous Hera drove him mad/And made him kill his kids, sir)  are easily memorable.   —Susan Piperato, Chronogram

   “If there is one thing to learn from this CD, it is that there is plenty of life in the old myths....[I]t is wonderful—endlessly clever and inventive in its melodies, in its sense of musical history, in its arrangements and performances, and most especially in its way with words and rhymes.....Beyond any question of pedagogical utility, the songs are delightful in themselves, worth hearing, worth owning, worth memorizing and savoring.                                                                                                                                                         —Mark Speyer, The Classical Outlook

Please click on Notes & Samples to find out what’s actually on this CD, or go directly to Music Orders. — Bouquet (or brickbats) can be tossed at: mythclass <at>

———Latest site revision (including yebat’nik hacked-page removal): April 25, 2017———