Tales For Scary Times

This album is for the sheer enjoyment of the people who find it hard to live in this world without a good,...



    Dear Listener,
    This album is for the sheer enjoyment of the people who find it hard to live in this world without a good, old-fashioned, hair-raising, spine-chilling, blood-curdling, teeth-chattering, goose pimply ghost story.

    The best kind of enjoyment comes when the climax of the story sends a tingle of fear through one’s imagination. These are some of the old classics. The ones that are tried, tested, and true.

    For all the listeners who have not heard these particular tales, settle back and enjoy hearing stories that have caused folks to shiver with fright and delight for many years.

    For those of you who have heard them before, aren’t you lucky. You’ll get another chance at the bone-chilling effects that are produced by these wonderful stories.

    And now…find yourself a comfortable place. Settle back, close your eyes, and listen as these tales cast their spells again.
    Thank you for listening.

    1) ELVIRA AND HENRY (10:29)

    This story had its beginnings many years ago. I was a fourth grade student in a small elementary school in Salisbury, NC when I first began writing about Henry and Elvira. The character of Henry was real, but the other charac­ters came from scary stories that I heard told by my grandfather. As the story goes, Elvira and Henry are caught out on an old country road late one cold night. They are taken in, fed and warmed by a most unusual host. This story is funny, full of surprises and just a bit scary.

    2) LYDIA (10:24)

    A ghost and a ghost story that has endured the test of time. Even in our modern era this ghost is said to make herself visible on a regular basis. It started in the 1930s when a young girl and her parents were caught up in an unusual chain of events. Time after time the ghost continued to appear to strangers who would accidentally come upon the reenactment at the right time. Sometimes the unsuspecting person is overcome by fear and cannot deal with the fact that they have encountered a ghost. Then there are others who are both brave and curious about what has caused this phenomenon. This is the story of one such encounter.

    3) SHOES (0:53)

    It’s hard to listen to scary stories without experiencing nightmares and bad dreams. So here is a method of protection against these things. Katherine Windham from Selma, Alabama, a fellow storyteller, shares this secret with me, but my grandmoth­er was the person responsible for giving me this foolproof method of protection against scary things that may creep about your bedroom at night.

    4) THE GOLDEN ARM (6:52)

    An old English story that has been told and retold for centuries by generation after generation. It’s one of the classics of ghost stories. The more you hear it the more you will want to hear it. No one seems to know how this woman acquired her golden arm, but she has it and seems to deal with it quite well until, at long last, someone becomes greedy. The turn of events after that have a long-lasting effect on the memory of the listener.

    5) SLEEPING SICKNESS (18:57)

    This story came along quite early in my storytelling career. It was given first hand by a person as strange as the story itself. I listened in disbelief as she revealed its contents to me. She swore every word was the truth. I believed. Later, I heard other storytellers telling a story with a similar plot. Even later than that, I found the story written in an old English story book. Perhaps it was real to the teller as she told it. It’s real to me now as I tell it. Listen and see what you think!

    The Story Lady
    Jackie Torrence

    1. Elvira and Henry 10:29
    2. Lydia 10:24
    3. Shoes 0:53
    4. The Golden Arm 6:52
    5. Sleeping Sickness 18:57
  • Release Date: May 18, 1986

    Produced by Michael Robert Frank, Earwig Music Company, Inc., and Jackie Torrence

    Recorded and Mixed at Acme Recording Studios, Chicago, Illinois, August 26, 1984
    Engineered by Todd Colburn and Craig O’Donnell, Edited by Michael Rasfeld
    Cover Design and Artwork by George Hansen
    Photography by Bruce A. Dart
    CD Graphic design by Al Brandtner, Brandtner Design, Chicago, Illinois
    Thanks to Bruce Kaplan of Flying Fish Records for his advice and encouragement.