We’re in the midst of going through our archives and stumbled upon a few fun music videos, or should we say “music related videos” that Jack made over the years. We just uploaded them to our YouTube channel (be sure to like, comment and subscribe) and wanted to share them with you! Check out Jack’s music page at JackAndKitty.com as well.

“1925 Charleston” was a scrapped together music video of footage from our DVD, “Live And Havin’ A Heck Of A Time with Jack Norton and the Mullet River Boys”. That’s Jed Germond on banjo and Liz Draper on string bass. The audio is from Jack’s “Wizard Oil” album. The cartoon is from an old Max Fleischer short.

Years ago, Jack had the opportunity to open for his guitar teacher and mentor Leon Redbone. The concert took place at the Hopkins Center for the Performing Arts in Hopkins, Minnesota. Jack was booked to do a 30 minute set of music. Sadly, the promoter didn’t read the contract very well as Redbone does not allow musical acts to open for him. In desperate need of money, Jack and Kitty came up with the idea of Jack just doing a “stand up comedy” set. Of course, given two days to prepare, Jack needed to sit down for his stand up act. Here’s the tragic outcome of the performance (which also resulted in the “Have A Laugh On Me!” comedy EP)…

Speaking of Leon Redbone, Jack filmed this next clip while a junior in high school. Norton’s take on “I Ain’t Got Nobody” was more influenced by Emmett Miller, but the Redbone impersonation is still pretty cringey. This film was shot by Jack’s buddy Jon Tripp on 8 MM film and includes a brief cameo by Jack’s old touring pal, singer/songwriter Ben Weaver (whom Jack produced his first four albums). By the way, a great dixieland hot jazz version of “I Ain’t Got Nobody” was included on Jack’s “Wizard Oil” album which features Vince Giordano, John Gill, Ralph Norton and other jazz greats.

Here’s two novelty holiday tunes for you…

“I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas” and “Don’t Give Me No Goose For Christmas, Grandma” are clips from the DVD “Live And Havin’ A Heck Of A Time” DVD by Jack Norton and the Mullet River Boys. Again, Jed and Liz make up the band. By the way, “Goose” was originally performed by Stan Fritts and the Korn Kobblers, a band Jack profiled in his 850+ page opus, “Cornstars: Swing Music in Rube Time” (available in paperback and ebook editions).

A more traditional (by Jack and Kitty standards) music video was released for the disturbing folk single, “Jesus” from Jack’s album, “Dance Real Slow”. which was recorded in Iowa City and features folk legend Dave Moore on accordion and harmonica. Jack shot/chopped this clip…

Jack spent much of the early 2000s working as a traveling folk singer, both as a solo artist and leading his “bluegrass vaudeville” band, Jack Norton and the Mullet River Boys – a group that ended up winning numerous Minnesota Music Awards. Here’s a fun clip of the band live at Beaner’s Central Coffeehouse in Duluth, Minnesota…

At the height of their popularity, Jack Norton and the Mullet River Boys played nearly every venue imaginable appearing at major folk festivals, bluegrass events, performing arts centers and concert halls. Norton’s comedic sidekick was Jed “Butterball” Germond, a talented young fiddler from Minnesota. Here’s the band’s take on “Rag Mama Rag” from the compilation album “Minnesota To Asia”, put together for the 2004 tsunami relief efforts by local bluegrass band Monroe Crossing.

As a solo artist, Jack was a frequent guest on “Radio Live” a nationally syndicated NPR show produced by Florida Public Radio in Pensacola, Florida. Jack appeared half a dozen times on the program over the years, here’s two memorable clips filmed in front of a live studio audience. A collection of the “best of” Jack’s performances was recently released: “Live on Florida Public Radio”. Fans may also want to check out “Live on Iowa Public Radio” for a similar folksy singer/songwriter vibe from Jack.

All of Jack’s original songs (of which there are thousands) as well as the arrangements to public domain traditional folk tunes are co-written by Kitty…who also produced all of Jack’s albums. Not comfortable performing on stage during this era, Kitty was side-by-side with Jack in all his creative endeavors. Here’s an example of an early Jack and Kitty song, “Save Me” which was first recorded by Jack Norton and the Mullet River Boys way back in 2003 (and can be heard on the compilation album, “Songs in the Key of Love”). J&K would later release the tune on their “Our Secret Song” album. This clip features Jack jamming at home with the Yoga Jug Benders, a group led by Brooklynd Turner and Anne Baggenstoss which appears throughout “Jug Band Hokum: A Documentary Series”.

With a life constantly spent, on the road, Jack frequently yearns for home…as these two clips indicate…

In 2018, Jack released “Busker’s Blues”, a critically acclaimed collection of early delta blues and ragtime country folk. Produced by Kitty and recorded via solar power in a cabin in a remote Canadian wilderness, “Busker’s Blues” was a throw back to Jack’s time spent as a wandering minstrel. The music video for “The Reefer Song”, a tune first performed by the great Fats Waller, uses footage from an educational film which warms teens about the dangers of reefer…

We’ll end today’s stroll down memory line with a fun behind-the-scenes clip from the making of “The Man With The Brush”, a BBC-produced documentary on legendary sign painter (and Jack Norton fan) Mike Meyer of Mazeppa, Minnesota. Jack and Kitty wrote Mike’s theme song and stopped by his art studio for a live performance which can be heard in the film.

Don’t miss: Jack Norton’s Songs From An Empty Room, a series of videos from Jack and his guitar…filmed in a empty room.