Master Arden of Icombe just got in his car, and the final cleanup of all the instrumental tracks for Hidden Gold is complete. Now it is all down to me.
My friendship with Paul Butler began 30 years ago, when he and I met at performing arts camp. It was a fun, quirky connection, and though we didn’t actually stay in touch after the summer, we did have one collaboration at the time that stayed with me: he ran an RPG of his own design, and I rolled up a character to play through a dungeon full of brain puzzles. I decided to create an avatar, my fantasy counterpart. The name? “Drake Orinwood”, which became my character name ever since. (The last name was changed slightly to pass the submission heralds when I registered it in the early 90’s.)
I bumped into Paul online three years ago when I started checking out the bardic scene and launched the Facebook group. If I hadn’t had that years-old, long-dormant connection, I don’t know if I ever would have had the guts to ask him for his help on this project. But having earned a Laurel in period music, and having studied (and learned to play, and indeed make) a stunning variety of period instruments, Arden of Icombe was the ideal partner (along with Dave Lambert) to bring my vision for a bardic album to life.
Thanks again, Paul, for two years of fun and hard work, and for teaching me what is possible if I just have the courage to ask.