Requiem for a Filker

Cleveland’s fannish folk music community lost one of its most prolific contributors when Henry “Lord Silverbadger Dolphinfox” Paulson passed away quietly on March 2, his favorite zither “Uhura” clasped to his chest as his heart beat its last. Paulson’s career as a filker, or “speculative troubadour” as he preferred, spanned four decades.

“Some say he’s our Lennon, our Dylan,” long-time friend Mistwilde Cloudharp says, holding back tears, “I always considered him more like our Neil Sedaka. He was that good.”

Primarily known for his fannish versions of traditional folk melodies, Paulson never feared experimentation. He was a pioneer of what is now known as Freggae, penning such beloved hits as “Lively Up Your Elf,” and “Iron, Lion, Cylon.”

His attempts at riddim aside, he’s best known for the line that now adorns his headstone. “We had joy, we had fun. We had phasers set on stun.”

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