Tom Chapin






    In 1972 the Harry Chapin song "Taxi" was on the radio. Tom Chapin, Harry's younger brother, was in England, playing his guitar and making advertising commercials to make ends meet. 
   One of these commercials had been scheduled to shoot at Oxford University, in the courtyard of Magdalen College. It was there that Tom crossed paths with Gil Markle. Markle was in temporary residence at Oxford, lecturing a group of American high school students and teachers on the philosophy of communications media. 
   Markle was taking his cues from Marshall McLuhan, from his Yale classmate and travel-industry colleague Ted Voelkel,  and from the Japanese electronics firm, Sony, which had only recently manufactured the then trend-setting Port-a-Pak video cameras which were used to documentthe overseas seminar.  
   Chapin would help test out the cameras, since he had arrived that day at Magdalen College somewhat in advance of his film crew, and of his obligations for the afternoon. He did so walking around in the courtyard, singing, and playing his guitar. Markle (camera one) edited the video clip Don't Have to Worry a few months later, back in the United States. Lost for three decades, the clip was recovered by accident by an alert office cleaning crew. 

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   Tom Chapin came to Long View Farm in the fall of 1974 in the company of a band, of which he was a part, called Mt. Airy. Members of the entourage appear in the photos above. (Click on them to make them bigger.) 
   Three songs were recorded as a "demo." Jesse Henderson got the sounds up; Gil Markle did the mix.


       Wonder Light 
       Shimmy Shimmy 
       She's Just a Woman






 All original material copyright © Gilbert Scott Markle. All rights reserved.