Writing songs about Bigfoot and the stories of encounters with them has been a new experience for me as a songwriter. It has been personally rewarding and has put me in touch with some exceptional people. It has also challenged me to a greater degree than ever before since I find myself on untrodden terrain like some ancient explorer.
It was suggested to me that some of you might like to know how Land of the Bigfoot got started. If so, this is for you.

 In Nashville I had written songs professionally in the 70s and 80s and became a staff-songwriter for a major publisher there. I was writing mostly typical country songs - a subject I was totally comfortable with at the time. In those days I was fortunate to have had some very well known artists record some of my songs, including Wynn Stewart, Don Gibson, Floyd Cramer, The Texas Playboys, Pat Boone, Moe Bandy, The Cascades, etc. Of course I was proud of any and all of my accomplishments, and was thrilled when one of these songs was performed at the Academy of Country Music Awards. Eventually though, I retreated from the Nashville scene, moved back to California, and except for a few gospel songs written at a later date, I stopped writing all together.
 I had hunted, campted and fished California, Oregon, and Washington when I was younger without ever having noticed a sign of Bigfoot. Maybe Bigfoot existed and maybe he didn't! He simply did not occupy my thoughts back then and I probably didn't care one way or another.

 It was toward the end of 2009 that I began to develop a great interest in this elusive primate of the night. The more I delved into the subject the more convinced I became there was something here! The fact that so many people from every walk of life had witnessed this creature first-hand was the biggest factor for me. How skeptics could write off thousands of people's sightings taking place over  several hundred years and keep a straight face amazed me. It seemed to me that the skeptics were the ones wanting attention!

 On a fishing trip to a remote lake in the Sierra foothills recently I came across a broken tree that was about 6 inches in diameter at the twisted-break, about 8 feet off the ground. My son was with me and asked ... 'What's out here that can break a tree like that?" The break was old enough that any foorprints that might have once been there had been washed away by the rain. I was'nt sure what broke the tree and said as much, but it lies in an area where sightings have occured.
At a second Sierra foothills lake later on, we heard what I felt was almost a duplicate of some bigfoot calls someone recorded years ago in Washington state.
Anyway, I decided to jump in and see what I could come up with in regards to writing songs about a very unique wild and hairy legend that I now knew had to be real. It had been over 15 years since I had written a song! I knew from the beginning it was going to be a challenge but the prospect of being able to combine my love of songwriting with my favorite subject "Bigfoot" held the promise of some enjoyable times. Since I no longer possessed the physical conditioning necessary to go out and beat the bushes like a real sasquatch researcher needs to do I welcomed an opportunity to help promote the reality in my own way.

 I began to read and study on this creature that most of the country said could not exist.
I watched every documentary I could get my hands on, spent a lot of time on the internet reading about sightings and encounters, and read many books on the subject.

 I knew I was going to have to tread carefully. I figured I had probably learned just enough to make a fool of myself if I didn't watch what kind of a song I was writing. So, the next thing I did was launch an internet-wide search to see what kind of bigfoot songs were out there. The results were as I suspected, there were only a few and most of those seemed to be folks just having fun with the subject. Of course, there's nothing wrong with having fun with Bigfoot songs. Truth be known, I'm envious of those who can write them! But I wanted to write a much different kind of song. It seemed to me these men and women who are researching Sasquatch take their work seriously. Maybe they'd like to us to take them seriously too.

 My first Bigfoot song never used any of the words common as a name for Bigfoot. You won't find Bigfoot, Sasquatch, Skookum, Wildman .... or any of his common names in this song! I purposely set out to accomplish the writing of this song without the use of them.
It had to be more unique!
I had seen many names for the creature but none of them were what I was looking for at the time. I remember then coming across an instance where a Native American had called it the "Keeper Of The Mountain" in a documentary. I knew I had found my song title! It was the inspiration I had been looking for!
So ...the song is about  a field investigator's account of a close encounter with a huge man-like biped one night that he keeps referring to as the "Keeper Of The Mountain", and no matter how many times he's gotten close to it he still feels somewhat intimidated by this hairy giant when it gets too close!  (Are all squatchers fearless?)
The other songs began to fall into place after that .... "The Mountain is Mine" came along next as the voice of Skookum telling those looking for him to leave and that "The mountain is mine!"

I was up late one night on the internet looking to order another book on BF encounters and came across the caption for "Valley Of The Skookum", a book by Sali Shepard-Wolford, a long term witness. I thought ... "What an awesome title! This is really heavy!" I went to bed, planning to order the book the next day, but found myself wide awake at 3 am with this title in my head ... "Valley Of The Skookum!" I had to get up then, and by 5am had written most of the song and hadn't even read the book yet. I got in touch with Sali and told her of the song, and that without her title I would have no song so she became a co-writer with me.
I did order the book after the song was completed and was not disappointed. I found it a real page turner! I would recommend "Valley Of The Skookum" to any with an interest in BF.
My other songs began to fall into place .... some more difficult than others, but none really easy. Writing songs now without going over old territory gets tougher with each song. Often I will have finished a song and recorded it only to decide later that it" just didn't have it!"
Those go into a "holding tank" for further evaluation or salvage.
Some songs I had on my site were later removed because they were simply not right. They needed more work. I am still working on those and hope to have them uploaded soon.

"Land of the Bigfoot", the CD, has twelve songs on it as does "Land Of The Bigfoot II",
which was the second CD released. Both are available on this site.
I cannot say if there will be other songs after these ... I suppose it will depend on whether the inspiration is there and whether folks would like to hear more. But it has been a wonderful journey writing them and I have enjoyed performing these songs at many of the bigfoot symposiums and conferences around the nation.
Me ... I continue to read all I can on Bigfoot and talk with those who pursue it. Of one thing I am certain .... we're not chasing an animal! These are ancient beings who are intelligent and living the life they choose. We need to repect them.

Thanks so much for your interest,


A note:
I got an email from one who had purchased the CD and enjoyed the songs but had a question; he wanted to know why I often include an element of danger in describing the Bigfoot or Sasquatch, as he felt they were normally very shy and projected no real threat.
I chose to also answer that question here in case you are one who might have had the same question in mind.
Writing songs are a lot like making a movie. Ever seen movie credits like ... "Based on a true story"? Well, there's a true story somewhere in that movie but they also created some scenes and situations to enhance the movie and make it not become boring. And this is what I must do with a song.....  I need to try to keep the song from becoming boring. Including an element of danger in a bigfoot song helps make it more mysterious and dramatic. Whether or not a sasquatch is a threat is really up to the individual in the field .... they alone must make that decision!
Me ... I'm just a songwriter who loves to write songs and loves the legend that is Bigfoot.
Bob Gimlin                              Abe Del Rio                            Lenny Green
Books I own and have read on the subject;

Sasquatch, Legend Meets Science      Dr. Jeff Meldrum
Where Bigfoot Walks      Robert Michael Pyle
Raincoast Sasquatch      J. Robert Alley
Tribal Bigfoot      David Paulides with Harvey Pratt
In Pursuit of a Legend      T.A. Wilson
On The Track Of The Sasquatch      John Green
The Mogollon Monster      Susan Farnsworth
The Bigfoot Film Controversy   Roger Patterson/Christopher Murphy
The Bigfoot Casebook      Janet & Colin Bord
Sasquatch Bigfoot      Don Hunter/Rene Dahinden
Bigfoot Behavior-1      Ray Crowe
Tracking Bigfoot      Donald Wallace/Lori Simmons
Enoch      Autumn Williams
The Hoopa Project      David Paulides with Harvey Pratt
Bigfoot Sasquatch      Grover S. Krantz
Valley of the Skookum      Sali Sheppard-Wolford
There's Something In The Woods      Nick Redfern
On The Track Of Bigfoot      Marian T. Place
In Search Of Giants      Thomas Steenburg