Before I know it, there's flashing red lights behind us, and a 6 foot tall African American police woman has pulled him over, in my car, for doing 110 in a 55 mph zone. The ticket cost $310.
Somebody was trying to tell me something, but I wasn't listening.
Norman Carl Odam was born in Lubbock, Texas in 1947. Inspired by Chet Atkins, he learned to play the guitar, and started playing on the steps of his high school, attracting crowds of kids before school started for the day. Realizing that Lubbock, Texas, was far from the action he decided to go to New York City, so that he might appear on the Johnny Carson Show. The odyssey begins.
The Ledge, as he is affectionately known to his friends, loaded up his car, grabbed $160, and headed to Fort Worth. I guess this is where you go if you're headed to New York City from Lubbock. There he was spotted in a parking lot by two guys who worked at a vacuum sweeper repair shop. They were intrigued [who wouldn't be?] by his demeanor, and spirited him to the local recording studio.
At the helm of the studio was T Bone Burnett, who must've been all of about 20 then, and not yet famous. All were intrigued by the sound of the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, recording engineer and vacuum cleaner repairman alike. The Ledge played "Paralyzed", and the frenzy began. T Bone played drums, the tapes rolled, and the first single was recorded.
The studio was located on the first floor of a building that housed an AM radio station on the second floor. T Bone took the master tape upstairs to his pal the DJ, and played it for him. T Bone says that he waited several minutes for a response, expecting the worst, but the DJ screamed, "This is it! This is it! This is the new music!"
All day long the radio station hyped the single, tantalizing listeners with the promise that it would be played at 5pm. Finally the moment arrived, and the station was flooded with more calls in 30 minutes than in any entire day prior to the time the Legendary Stardust Cowboy got into town.
They knew they had something. TBone quickly pressed 500 copies of the 45 rpm record, and the Legendary Stardust Cowboy hit the happy trails to success. Less than a week later, he was signed to Mercury Records, and later appeared on "Laugh In". "Paralyzed" hit the Billboard Top 200, and the world was a changed place.
We now bring you the Legendary Stardust Cowboy Worldwide Web Page, for your reading and listening pleasure.
You may contact the Legendary Stardust Cowboy directly at:
PO Box 36305
San Jose, CA
He would love to hear from you!