When I first started turkey hunting in the mid 90’s I started out primarily using pot calls. I still remember using an old crystal pot call that I got from M.A.D. Calls by Drury Outdoors. I was able to call in and kill a handful of turkeys with pot calls and box calls and still use those calls today. However, I was always in awe of the guys running mouth calls. So I set my mind to learning to use one no matter what. I promise you, I made some horrible sounds in those early days. My turkey hunting friends/mentors would say things like, ” I wouldn’t do that in the woods” or “that ain’t no turkey I ever heard”. I got the point, I needed practice, and LOTS of it! So that’s what I did.
I was fortunate to have a good friend named Scott Parks in Huntsville, AL. that was a pro staffer for a duck call manufacturer and traveled to outdoor shows and competitions. I can tell you he was a great competition duck caller, but in my opinion he was an even better turkey caller and for sure one of the best turkey hunters that I have ever known. Anyway, Scott talked me into coming to see him at one of the shows he was doing. It was either Nashville or Birmingham. I don’t remember. At that show, Scott’s booth was next door to a fella by the name of Barry Springfield.
Now Barry was a very well known custom mouth call maker. I don’t think he made anything else, but I could be wrong. He made calls for lots of the big name competition callers(I wish I could remember who, but I can’t cause I was new and they didn’t mean much to me at the time). He also made calls for Scott. What was so awesome about Barry is that he would custom tune each mouth call after listening to you run it if you were fortunate enough to see him in person. Scott told Barry to hook me up. And the rest is turkey hunting history. Well at least it is my turkey hunting history. More of the story in my next installment.