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Myths and Legends

Jason Weiser tells stories from myths, legends, and folklore that have shaped cultures throughout history. Some, like the stories of Aladdin, King Arthur, and Hercules are stories you think you know, but with surprising origins. Others are stories you might not have heard, but really should. All the stories are sourced from world folklore, but retold for modern ears. These are stories of wizards, knights, Vikings, dragons, princesses, and kings from the time when the world beyond the map was a dangerous and wonderful place.
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Apr 20, 2016

A story from Chilean folklore about the smartest woman in the world, her talking shoe, and a prince that deserved a slap on the face.

The creatures this week are the abatwa, from South Africa, and you'll learn why ants are the best roommates ever.

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Music:

"Puzzle Pieces" by Lee Rosevere

"a long night" by bbatv

"Play Pelagic" by Little Glass Men

"Neon Hippies" by Fields Ohio

"Hedonic State" by Mike B. Fort

"Theme W" by Steve Combs & Delta Is

"Deep Cave (Dip and Cavern Remix)" by Jahzzar

Apr 13, 2016

Two stories from the Grimm brothers, both of which have people going up, but in different ways. The first is the story of Rapunzel, and the second is about a small tailor who uses one success to face giants, a rampaging boar, and a unicorn when seeking the hand of the princess. The only problem? His greatest achievement may be based on a lie, and he's either the world's smoothest con man or completely delusional. Or both.

The creature this week is a stack of old weasels. That catch things on fire.

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Music:

"Satellites and Waterfalls" by Nihilore

"Where it Goes" by Jahzzar

"The Journey" by Marcos H. Bolanos

"AS Nihilism Gives Way to Existentialism" by Nihilore

"Windy Bluffs" by Visager

"Scramby Eggs" by Andy G. Cohen

"Beat the Burglar" by Scott Holmes

"We Can Make You Feel Alive Wholesale" by Winjer3

"Wipe my Face Away" by Keshco

"Seasong" by Jelsonic

Apr 6, 2016

The much-requested story of Prometheus, a Titan who was cursed by Zeus to have his liver pecked out every day for defying the Olympian and bringing fire to the earth. We'll also talk about the Titanomachy, the very literal clash of the Titans at the very beginning of Greek mythology, where Zeus comes to power and we all learn that any policy that involves crazy paranoia is basically the only one a Greek god considers.

The creature is the gooseberry wife, but unlike the name, and the berries she protects, she is not sweet, and might eat your child.

Our sponsor: Loot Crate. Don't forget the promo code LEGENDS!

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Music:

"The Faslehood of Positivity" by Rowan Box

"Owls" by Jazzar

"Captive" by Steve Combs and Delta Is

"Gminor long delays" by Solo Bass Steve

"Liberosis" by Nihilore

"Something (Bonus Track)" by Kai Engel

"Kelp Grooves" by Little Glass Men

"May" by Kai Engel

 

Apr 5, 2016

Old foes resurface as Balin, the fugitive knight, flees from King Arthur's court. He'll find himself on a perilous (and, at times, ridiculous) quest, where he'll inadvertently put the events in motion that will start the quest for the Holy Grail. Oh, and Arthur gets the Round Table and gets married.

The creature this week is the little naked person buried just below the ground who will scream horrendously if you try to pick him out. Also, he might just kill you.

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Don't forget the promo code MYTHS for a $20 rebate!

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Music:

“Decompression” by Blue Dot Sessions

“Celadon” by Podington Bear

“Waltz Opus Posthume” by Blue Dot Sessions

“Now You Are Here” by Sergey Cheremisinov

“Lorca” by Thorn1

“Independent Film” by Steve Combs

“Chasing the Port Chains” by Rolemusic

“Turquoise” by Podington Bear

“March” by Kai Engel

“Midnight Blue” by Podington Bear

“Sepia” by Podington Bear

“Trillium” by Podington Bear

Mar 23, 2016

When we left king Arthur, the monstrous Questing Beast was lumbering toward him. We'll learn all about that beast and the line of kings cursed to hunt it. Then, Merlin shows up with a chilling plan to solve the problem of the child that is destined to grow up to destroy Arthur. We'll also meet Balin, a disgraced knight who just got out of jail and meets with an unexpected quest for redemption...that might just curse all of England.

On the creature of the week, you'll learn why you want to stock up on pineapples, especially if you are pregnant and don't want this mosquito-like vampire coming after you.

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Mar 16, 2016

The story of the legendary King Arthur, from just after when he pulled the sword from the stone.Though he's in his late-teens or early-twenties, he is not at all taken seriously by his barons or petty kings, who revolt almost immediately. Less than one year into his reign, he is hiding behind the walls of a castle waiting for the best moment to escape, all while Merlin stands atop the wall shooting fire at the armies assembled out front.

The creature of the week is the Mahaha, and you'll see yet another reason why you shouldn't trust the blue shirtless man wanting to tickle you.

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Music:

“Far from Home” by Ketsa

“Floor Shine” by Blue Dot Sessions

“Pl4y1ng” by Rolemusic

“Wounds” by Ketsa

“Denzel Sprak” by Blue Dot Sessions

“Sunset” by Kai Engel

“Springtime” by Poddington Bear

“Forgetfulness” by Ketsa

Mar 9, 2016

This week: two folktales from Japan. One is about a humble, happy stone cutter who becomes a power-mad, bitter stone cutter. The other is about, surprise surprise, supernatural occurrences at a Buddhist temple in a remote mountain region.

The creature of the week is...or are...the blue men of the Minch. They are blue, men, and very, very good at writing poetry.

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Music:

"Fistful of Dub" by Spinning Merkaba

"Brooks" by Kai Engel

"Byte" by NWMA

"Weathervane" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Teenage Dream" by  Yusuki Tsutsumi

"Thoughtful" by Lee Rosevere

"Under Suspicion" by Lee Rosevere

"XX" by Jahzzar

"Lil Couak Part 1" by Couak Vador

"Paper Napkin" by Blue Dot Sessions

 

Mar 2, 2016

The story of a famous dragon from the folklore of north east England is filled with knights, curses, and, of course, the need to kill your favorite childhood dog. The story of the Lambton Worm is a quest for redemption where many people die because of a young man who just wants to yell cuss words at children and throw his trash in a well.

The creature of the week is the butter cat. That should be enough to want to listen to the creature of the week.

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Music:

"Another Version of You" by Chris Zabriskie

"Whispering Through" by Asura

"Heart and Mind" by Kai Engel

"Ride with the Moon" by TRG Banks

"Touch the Darkness" by Kai Engel

"Horse Ride 1" by TRG Banks

 

Feb 24, 2016

Norse mythology, like all mythology, is strange. Thor's hammer is gone. It was stolen...or he just left it somewhere and forgot about it. To get it back, though, he's going to have to do something more difficult than fighting legions of giants. He's going to need to get married.

And there's the origin of poetry, which contains way more men formed from spit than you'd expect for the origin of poetry.

On the creature of the week, seriously, just stay out of the woods. It never ends well. Except when it does, and you find love and learn to put on a puppet show.

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The Prose Edda - THE source for Norse Mythology

Music:

"Beeth" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Direct to Video" by Chris Zabriskie

"An Opus in Bb" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Witch Laws" by Dlay

"Hanami Matsuri" by Fabian Measures

"It's Always Too Late to Start Over" by Chris Zabriskie

Feb 17, 2016

In this famous story from Greek Mythology, we'll meet Cupid (not a baby), as he accidentally nicks himself with his own arrow. In a podcast episode that is  like the movie "Mean Girls" with a trip to the Greek underworld, you'll see why it is against the law to harbor someone who's prettier than a goddess.

The creature of the week is a forest creature that operates on a very annoying wood chip economy.

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The bag of dirt

Music:

"Sonar Despierto" by Zifhang

"Sidecar" by Podington Bear

"The Vault" by Trigg & Gusset

"The Coil Winds" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Transmogrify" by Podington Bear

"Here is Now" by Ketsa

"Trellis" by Podington Bear

Feb 10, 2016

A double-sized episode with the whole epic and slightly-ridiculous story of a cattle raid that ended up taking way longer than it should have. It involves a young man hulking out numerous times, several creative ways to kill your opponent in single combat, and a fight to the death between best friends. Also, you'll see why you shouldn't bring your squirrel to an active war zone.

The creature of the week is a scary, hairy little zombie who, like Jack Frost, will nibble at your toes. Unlike Jack Frost, though, he will bite them clean off.

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Music:

"As Dust Gathers" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Rally" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Catching Feathers" by Ketsa

"Burn" by Massimo Ruberti

"Play Pelagic" by Little Glass Men

"Beautiful Rain" by Ketsa

"Dubrelli" by Synapsis

"Journey Near Complete" by Ketsa

Feb 3, 2016

Queen Medb, King Ailil, and Fergus make their way into Ulster while the army is crippled by feeling as if they are going into labor. Only one man, barely out of childhood himself, can stand against the invaders and protect his people until they are able to rise. That man is Cu Chulainn. This week, we learn the origin story of this Irish superhero (he's kind of literally a superhero, too. He can hulk out.), including how he got his name, which basically means dog.

The creature of the week is one that will, unsurprisingly, drag you into the river and kill you. What is surprising, though, is the party that happens in your village when you kick it out.

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Music:

"Hiroko Life" by Whodiniz

"Brick Wall (Instrumental)" by Simon Panrucker

"Venus in Furz" by Steve Combs

"Contrarian" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Invitation to the Voyage" by Julia Kent

 

Jan 27, 2016

Starting an epic string of legends from Celtic folkore. We're back in the time of kings, princesses, and intrigue. You'll see how you can steal a kingdom with fancy accounting, curse a nation because of a careless comment, and start a war to prove to your spouse how rich you are.

The creature of the week is the monaciello from Naples, Italy. When he's not helping you, he's stealing your clothes...off your body...

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Really excellent source for the today's stories

my e-mail: Jason@mythpodcast.com

Music:

"Turning" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Something for Nothing" by Ketsa

"Flag of No Country" Julia Kent

"Swan's Melody" by REW<<

"Passageways to Happier Hours" by REW<<

"Thaw (Outro)" by Kai Engel

Jan 20, 2016

It's the original story of the Snow Queen, more commonly known as the source material for the hyper-popular Disney movie named "Frozen". The original, though, is incredibly different, and contains much more violence, kidnapping, and weirdness than the adaptation.

On the creature of the week, you'll see why you shouldn't get drunk and take walks by the river

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Music

"Get Far" by Muddy Wires

"Threadbare Cashmere" by REW<<

"A Leaf in the Wind" by Coldnoise

"Morbid Imagination" by Kai Engel

"Baroque" by Jon Watts

"Snowfall" by Kai Engel

"Headlights/Mountain Road" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Tar and Spackle" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Wisteria" by Blue Dot Sessions

Jan 13, 2016

This week, it's a horror story from Korean folklore. A little girl gets lost in the forest, and then a strange problem begins tearing her family apart.

Then, on the creature of the week, you'll see how buying sunglasses for the guard might help you rob a temple.

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Music:

"When the Guests have Left" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Vindicta (Lost Radio Reshape)" by Astral & Shit

"Moon" by Massimo Ruberti

"Fleeting" by Coldnoise

"Spell" by Rolemusic

"January" by Kai Engel

"Midnight" by Ketsa

Jan 6, 2016

The first episode of much-requested Native American folklore has giants, ghosts, anthropomorphic coyotes, jilted lovers, and the reason for why the tick got so flat. Because you've always wondered how the wood tick got to be so flat.

On the creature of the week, it's an animal from Australian folklore who is lurking in stagnant water, just waiting to give you a deadly hug.

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Music:

"Hiroko Dream" by Whodiniz

"The Soft Glow of Christmas Lights" by Will Bangs

"Jenny Slate" by Steve Combs

"Brought" by Ketsa

"December" by Kai Engel

"Parade Shoes" by Blue Dot Sessions

Dec 23, 2015

The story behind the transition from Saint Nicholas to Santa Claus is one that includes murder, priest-punching, and ominous, demonic-looking companions. This episode looks at the legends behind an austere bishop who has been transformed into a magical, portly elf.

**Note: as I say in the show, this episode is not for young children. The story of St. Nick includes grisly murders and mentions of prostitution. Listener discretion is advised.**

The creature of the week is another sort of Santa from Spain who, in the old days, eschewed the coal for bad children for a long, deadly scythe.

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Krampus pictures

The History of Rome

Music

"The Krampus Song" by J Dobbs Rosa (J. Dobbs Rosa on Twitter)

"Threads and Veils" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Lathe" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Sirius" by Sergey Cheremisinov

"Cheap Suit" by Jason Staczek

"Dune" by Filip Roter

"Sorcery" by Bog

"Christmas Lights" by Patrick Poe

"Fledgling" by Psychadelik Pedestrian

 

 

Dec 16, 2015

The final chapter in the story of Theseus, the Minotaur, and all the other people that have gotten swept up in this drama spanning decades. We'll learn exactly what the Delphic Oracle meant by her prophecy, and how you can use a spool of thread to kill a giant monster.

On the creature of the week, it's a very literal tiny dancer.

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Music:

"Comfort in Uncertainty" by bbatv

"Great is the Contessa" by Blue Dot Sessions

"The Big Out There" by Krackatoa

"Hiroko in Deep" by Whodiniz

"When it Gets Dark at 4PM" by Will Bangs

"Reverie" by WVTM

Dec 9, 2015

The story of Daedalus and Icarus is much more than just Icarus flying too close to the sun. Daedalus, the inventor, is directly responsible for the labyrinth and the Minotaur. He's a man whose will to survive and desire for significance drives him to make magnificent things, which only bring death, destruction, and tragedy for him and everyone around him.

On the creature of the week, you'll learn how you can keep a Russian forest-dweller from playing pranks on you. All you have to do is burn his entire forest to the ground.

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Music:

"The Tide" by Alex Finch

"Cab Ride" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Mosic" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Lights Out" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Avec Toi" by Dana Boul

"Endless" by Dana Boul

"Last Straws for Sale (Instrumental)" by Lisa Germano

"Something Elated" by Broke for Free

"Wandering" by Steve Combs

 

Dec 2, 2015

We have all heard the story of Theseus fighting that monstrous half-bull, half-man beast known as the Minotaur, but the original story starts years earlier. It involves tensions between two kingdoms, a deadly poetry slam, and dumb bandits.

The creature of the week is a small chicken that will give you lots of gold...if you can keep it from sitting on you in the middle of the night and giving you nightmares.

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Music:

"Cold, Heat, Dust and Dew" by Curious Inversions

"The Shoes they Wear" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Empty Trees" by Ketsa

"Diversity" by Ketsa

"Here is Now" by Ketsa

"Something Elated" by Broke for Free

"Wandering" by Steve Combs

 

Nov 25, 2015

An episode of entirely listener-submitted stories! The main story is from South Africa and tells of how a mountain peak got its name from a deadly competition. Deadly because of the cancer risk, but also...well, you'll see.

Then, on the creature of the week, you'll see which household items can repel this ferocious beast and that, wow, koalas make terrifying sounds.

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Music:

"Always The Teasmade, Never The Tease" by Doctor Turtle

"Hammer and Damper" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Dub01" by Robodub

"Death on the Battlefield" by Rolemusic

"Something Elated" by Broke for Free

"Wandering" by Steve Combs

 

Nov 18, 2015

The story of a young woman, her magic doll, and a witch who may be the most terrifying - or the most ridiculous - person you've ever seen. You'll also see that you should definitely not trust a gift from a witch. Especially if that gift is a human skull...that's on fire.

On the creature of the week, if your date has goat hooves it probably will not go well.

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Nov 11, 2015

In this Russian Fairy Tale from the same collections as the stories of Koschei the Deathless, we find a prince who goes on a quest for the firebird. This leads us into a Russian nesting quest situation, where he ends up on a quest-within-a-quest-within-a-quest. We'll also follow his doofus brothers, who decide that taking an extended camping trip getting drunk in their silk party tents is much better than questing.

On the creature of the week, it's a large horse-headed monster who will push you down or trample you...all while giggling like a child.

The sponsor this week: Imakeokthings

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Music:

"Dew" by Cousin Silas/Black Hill

"Mile Post 1" by Alex Fitch

"Jackbird" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Celeste" by Alex Fitch

"Gondola Blue" by Blue Dot Sessions

"Something Elated" by Broke for Free

"Wandering" by Steve Combs

Nov 4, 2015

The end of the saga of this legendary king has Viking battles, magic cows, and a long con to take over England. Ragnar's poor planning when it comes to cementing his legacy blows up in his face, and we catch up with Aslaug, the daughter of Sigurd and Brynhild, and the atrociously ugly couple that murdered her grandfather.

The creature of the week is a little one-legged boy who grants wishes and has really smelly hair.

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Oct 28, 2015

People throughout history, before they died, have seen something...strange. They have seen ghostly doubles haunting their steps, foretelling their doom. These things are called doppelgängers, and while they mean something different now - basically someone that looks like you - their folklore origins are something far more ominous and sinister. This episode is about the shadowy creatures of ill omen that follow us all, and the famous historical figures that have seen theirs before they met their end.

The creature of the week is an extended, creepy story of a creature from Japanese folklore, and a solitary priest that became lost in the mountains.

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