Shows & CDs

Two National Awards for these CDs means you can be sure your dollars are well-spent on recordings you can listen to over and over. Grown-ups, you will enjoy them as much as the kids.

Make your car trips fun, Halloween a hoot and a holler, imagine yourself in 19th century London in an adventure story about real street sellers. Find songs about the fun and power of reading for your reading campaign. Learn about a tricky spider, get caught up in a story.

Click on the order links and you can listen before you buy.
You can also order CDs directly from Mary Jo by calling 413-532-3667 or email Mary Jo.
USA/Wholesale inquiries invited.

Books Are Celebrations CD

“This collection of clever and engaging songs (folktales, fiddle tunes) and poems celebrates the joy of letters, words, books and reading,” says L.A. Parent, and is called “interesting & useful” with Mary Jo Maichack’s “beautiful voice.”

“Books are Celebrations” won a 1999 Gold Award from National Parenting Publications Awards (NAPPA).

>> Click here to order or listen to CD

Howlarious Halloween,
Ghost Stories,
Songs & Jokes from the Crypt

for ages 6 and older


Ghost Stories, Songs & Jokes from the Crypt You’ll Giggle! You’ll Shiver! You’ll Jump! Get Spooked with Eerie Stories. What goes hhiisstt whiiissssttt???? Okay, the Halloween CD didn’t win any national prizes, or any prizes at all, but it IS priceless–and truly HOwLARIOUS! And it won’t rot your teeth.

>> Click here to order or listen to CD



The Muffin Man

A lonely 10-year-old girl,
a missing street vendor,
body snatchers,
the famous nursery song—

Listen to them come together in the thronging streets of Victorian London in this enchanting original story from award-winning Minstrel Storyteller Mary Jo Maichack.
Ages 8 to adult, 36.38 minutes

>> Click here to order or listen to CD

The NAPPA folks turned this down in 2006, but called Mary Jo to ask her to resubmit it in 2007, when it won NAPPA Honors–pretty cool for an original story!

Enter the Noisy Streets of Dickens-era London

Squeeze through crowded lanes, smell herring and strawberries, hear the street cries of the vendors with the story’s young heroine, Ginny, as she seeks a missing friend in dangerous Victorian London through this enchanting short story of historical fiction that makes the past palpable and entertaining.

Meticulously researched using the eye-witness accounts of Victorian author Henry Mayhew and other sources, this engaging, original story brings together real British history with a clever proposal for the origins of the famous folksong. Listeners young and old will enjoy the entertaining trip through perilous streets by Drury Lane.
Ginny Wright is lonely, but the daily visits from an itinerant muffin man, one of 19th century London’s thousands of street vendors, called costermongers, cheer her. So when the muffin man goes missing — in a world of unjust laws, rampant poverty, in which some even turn to body snatching to earn their keep — what’s a 10-year-old girl to do but grab her terrier, Pike, and run, pell-mell, right into the heart of the Covent Garden marketplace to find him?

Mary Jo Maichack, veteran minstrel storyteller of some 3,000 stages from San Francisco to Venice, Italy, and 1999 NAPPA gold award winner, wrote and narrated the story. Her expressive voice and musicality bring the piece a special charm; her love of character and dialect beautifully bring forth the elements of this rare take on old times.

“The (muffin man’s)…bell still tinkles along the streets, and is rung vigorously in the suburbs,…where the gents that’s in banks goes home to their teas, and the missuses has muffins to welcome them….” Henry Mayhew, 1861

Do you know the Muffin Man—the real muffin man? Within the beautiful CD package, (original pastel art by Gregory John Maichack) you will even find an easy recipe for the English muffins of his time. So have a muffin, give a listen. You’re in for a delicious time.

From a review in the School Library Journal:

“This short story, created around the traditional children’s song about the Muffin Man, is based on historical fact. Maichack, a professional stroyteller and musician, wonderfully provides all the voices of the characters, except a few male street vendors. She gives life to snippets of songs performed by street vendors and music hall singers within the context of the story. Listeners will enjoy this introduction to the street life of Dickens-era London.”

— Teresa Wittmann, Westgate Elementary School, Edmonds, WA