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The 13 Days of Spinechillers Day 7 - Oh Whistle and I'll Come to you my Lad

Alexander Finbow - Tuesday, January 18, 2011
And on the 7th day he gave us M.R. James, Gord bless ya Mr Bradley!

Yes today is the day we welcome the sublimely brilliant author of many beautifully crafted tales of terror; please put your hands together to welcome Montague Rhodes James, better known as M.R. James, to the Spinechillers family.

The first James story we have produced is his famous, chilling tale of a an ancient whistle found, and the malevolent, supernatural entity that answers it's call; 'Oh Whistle and I'll come to you my lad'.

Here's what the venerable and learned Mr Bradley has to say on this story and its author:

'Oh, Whistle And I’ll Come To You, My Lad is one of M R James’s most well-known and most memorable stories. James took the title from a Robert Burns ballad in which the singer is a girl giving advice to her lover – for reasons unknown their love is either illicit or frowned upon. If I may translate loosely from the Scots, she says:

Be careful when you come to court me/And don’t come at all unless the back door’s ajar/Climb over the back fence and let nobody see you/And come as if you weren’t coming to me at all.

And she gives more advice along similar lines in the other two verses. But in the chorus, she talks about her going to him, and it’s an entirely different story, with all caution suddenly cast to the wind:

Oh whistle and I’ll come to you, my lad/Though father and mother and all should go mad/Oh whistle and I’ll come to you, my lad

James takes a lover’s low whistled call, applies it to a single note blown on a pipe dug from an archaeological site in East Anglia and it becomes something else entirely. I never walk into a hotel room containing two beds without thinking of this story and as for walking along a Suffolk beach at twilight…….forget about it.'

Nicely put Doug!

The audiobook is a high quality 320kbps MP3 file which includes the cover artwork by Dan Woods. We recorded at the Audio Workshop Studios in London. Joseph Degnan was the recording engineer. It will open just fine in itunes, windows media player or any other flavour of MP3 player you prefer to use.

Part 1 is 20 minutes long and Part 2 is 30 minutes long.

During The 13 Days of Spinechillers event these downloads are available at only 99 cents each!

You can download Part 1 here and the concluding Part 2 here.

We hope you enjoy this audiobook and join us tomorrow for Day 8 of The 13 Days of Spinechillers when we'll unveil another story from a master of classic horror.