When he's not cranking out Texas gothabilly music with Ghoultown, “Count” Lyle Blackburn can usually be found writing about monsters, or chasing them.
Fans can catch up with Ghoultown and the band's founder, Blackburn, at their live performance Friday at the Curtain Club in Dallas, but this past weekend, the hound of horror was near Texarkana at a sold-out monster fest in Fouke, Arkansas. The annual gathering brings together community members and Bigfoot enthusiasts to share stories about a Sasquatch-like creature that reportedly roams that area near the Texas border.
East Texas was recently named by the Travel Channel as one of eight prime places across the country to encounter a Bigfoot, while the sightings around Fouke formed the basis of The Legend of Boggy Creek, a 1972 low-budget horror docudrama (made for $100,000) directed by Charles Pierce that grossed $25 million at the box office.
The recently remastered film screened at the Perot Theatre in Texarkana the weekend of the Fouke Monster Festival where Blackburn, who's 52, was also in attendance, sharing what he knows about the elusive creature. He has a vast knowledge of famous bipedal hominids after writing The Beast of Boggy Creek as well as his recent book, MOMO: the Strange Case of a Missouri Monster, which explores another famous Bigfoot legend.
So far, 2019 has been an eventful year for Blackburn, who makes the rounds speaking at libraries, museums and various monster festivals.
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“It’s been my busiest spring ever,” he says, “with so many appearances, the new book, films, etc.”
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As his fall schedule shows, Blackburn is facing another eventful season. Blackburn is slated to make an appearance at Horror Hound Weekend in Indianapolis in September, and will be attending the annual Texas Bigfoot Conference in October in Jefferson. On Oct. 26, he’ll be kicking it in Fort Worth at the Lake Worth Monster Bash.
And, of course, there’s also the music. Ghoultown is gearing up for a new album release. With the Fouke Monster Festival behind him, Blackburn says his band plans to start recording in November and release their new hellbilly tunes early next year.
“No title yet,” he says, “just started writing the songs. It’s in the very early stages.”