The Music of Linda Zapf Franklin

With both parents migrating from Germany in the 1930s, Lin is a 1st generation American and proud of it. Her father came over with other family members to start the famous Zapfs Music store of Philadelphia. Where in 1963 the Beatles came there for a photo opp while touring.

She grew up studying classical piano and at age 13 shifted her focus to folk guitar. Writing songs right from the start. Many of her brilliant compositions that you will hear in these recordings are from her very early age. Once she graduated from high school she literally hit the road running to explore the wonders that life had waiting for her.

Four Days Away - Two Hearts - Lin & John

Being a musician from Philadelphia and Bucks County Pa and being an heir of the original Zapfs Music Store in Philadelphia, I survived my entire life watching my father Leonard Zapf take care of millions of professional and working musicians as well as the tiniest beginners including myself when I was just 5.

We weren’t rich but I could play any instrument I wanted because of the Zapfs music store. I was allowed to run through the store as a bumpkin and believe me, I imagined myself as an expert at age 6. I got to see behind the scenes when the Beatles came and so many rock musicians that left their mark in the industry, in the late 1960s… and then Coltrane and Springsteen. Dad always warned me to stay away from them!! Lol.. yet I ended up making my music primary. I married a musician at the time and dad asked him… “how are you going to feed her??” Wasn’t easy because I had an appetite after the kids were born.

Please Take Care - Seeing Triple - Linda Zapf Franklin

"Dreaming to Be Somewhere Else" - Move On - Linda Zapf Franklin

out West

Wonder Why - Tennessee Highway - Lin & John

In 1975, I left my hometown of Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania to head west to the Rockies. With my first love and partner David Shegda and our friend Jamey Betz we climbed into Davids's parents’ 1969 Pontiac Bonneville station wagon that they gave us for the journey, also known as “ the Yak”. Anxious and ready for the adventures ahead we strapped the Hanglider kites down with bungee chords to the top of the Yak and headed out searching for places to strap on a 30 lb kite, run our asses off cliffs, and buttes - spread our wings and Fly!

For me, filming the guys and hiking all the buttes was half the fun! With my Cannon Super 8 movie camera and Fujika 701, 35mm I documented our epic journey across the USA. First, we headed south toward I-40, and at the Ozark mountains in Arkansas, we flew a snake-infested bluff. David went down into the trees. I had to search for him by driving the fully packed Yak into the Ozark mountain forest, on a logging road, and getting out to look for him for three hours, climbing through the bush and rock to find him.

Two Hearts - Two Hearts - Lin & John

Then pushed through to the Southern California Coast. Seeing the Pacific Ocean for the first time was beyond exciting. The smell of salt mixed with the fragrance of Eucalyptus and the warm pig-skin breeze while seeing the West Coast ocean horizon was nothing short of captivating. Old Highway Rt 1 was magical cruising to Big Sur. Stopping to fly at Pelican Beach, we made camp on the bluffs while I cooked up some dinner and watched the sunset. It was a magical time! We continued driving the Yak North up the coastal dunes of Oregon, just West of Corvallis.

After traveling thousands of miles across deserts, plains, and mountains the Yak needed several major repairs and would finally die. It was there I wrote the song Oregon. While seeing the guys fly off Yaquina Head lighthouse cliff launch, just North of Newport, and watching the waves crashing on the rocks below, I had to play my guitar and start writing. I knew then that, had I not taken that step off to the unknown leaving the security of my suburban home life in Huntingdon Valley, I most likely would have never witnessed the raw ruggedness of life and death. The moments of the natural world, and our tiny insignificance in the midst of the power of Nature.

"Love Changes" - Move On - Linda Zapf Franklin

Finally, we settled in Jackson Hole, Wyoming where we would fly off portions of the Teton Range and also the buttes surrounding the town of Jackson.

Inspired by the Teton mountains, we decided to stop our wandering and stay in this wonderous, dreamlike cowboy town. The music I began writing after landing in Jackson started with a song, Please Take Care, which I wrote after hearing The Hesitation. Blues, a Hot Tuna song. I bought a B-pass for skiing during the 1975-76 Season and got a job at the Wort Hotel in the evenings. Watching and listening to bands like Sawmill Creek began the birthing of my dream for a career in music. It wasn’t long before I was playing my original songs at the Mangy Moose Salon, Sojourner in the ski village at the bottom of Rendevous Mountain. and the Pink Garter.  It was a hoot playing pool at the Cowboy Bar and dancing to the bands that came into town. Back then the town of Jackson was less populated than it has gotten to be. After meeting Paul Hartman another musician in Jackson, we started playing in town for the duration of that winter. Hang-gliding took a rest when the snow came.

Now all these years later I am so happy to have documented the filming of this timely adventure. Sadly though, in August 1976, we lost our dear David Shegda flying off the Teton range, near Glory Bowl. His kite took a dive at 200 ft. while he was making his descent. The crash devastated all who knew him. It left me with an overwhelming drive to focus on my songwriting. David's motto had always been, “do what you love”, and seemingly they were the last words he left in a birthday card to me weeks before he left the planet.

Oregon - Move On - Linda Zapf Franklin

The Original Music

It's obvious that Lin is no stranger to music. Her life is music! She grew up in a family of music.  Starting the age of five studying classical piano and violin. She went on to record with many well-known world-level musicians and has opened for Leon Russell, Stacy Earl, Jonathan Edwards, Dion, Steve Forbert, Phil Keggy, and many others.

"For A While" - Tennessee Highway - Lin & John

The Making of MOVE ON

In the incredible year of 2007 when our kids were all off to college and John and I were shifting into a new world selling our home of 17 years, selling our restaurant The Raubsville Inn, and trying to understand what it meant to be a purist musician and how that would never fly in the world of pop music culture..

we decided to get back into the studio with my archive songs hiring Jim Weider from Levon Helm’s band to bring together a band, bass, and drums. We recorded at Dan McKinney’s house studio in the Allentown area of Pa. Move On, which was the title of the record. It is filled with songs written about just that, moving on. Because of the timing and that we really had so little time to get it together before actually moving on to our next stage of life, we were so pleased with the opportunity and finally the outcome of this recording.

"Hold on to Me" - album MOVE ON - Linda Zapf Franklin



Downloads, CDs and free MP3’s

The Making of Some of the last 25 YEARS

A compilation of original songs featuring many of Linda’s first ever written. Songwriting came easy for Linda starting at the age of 13 when she picked up her mother’s Martin 00018 1949 Guitar, and “just started playing it”. At the age of 15, Linda began singing and writing with her friend from school Karen Sweeny. They went on to play on The Dee Kelly Show in NYC, with help of their friend George Bruackman. The two went their separate ways after high School and at the age of 18, Linda headed out West. In 1975, she landed some singing and performing gigs with Paul Hartman (who later owned the Jackson Hole Hat Company) in the town of Jackson, Wyoming, and at the Jackson Hole Ski Village. Also joined a small band for a short time in Portland, Oregon calling themselves “The Pigmy Ponies” All of the music played was Linda’s original songs combining the talents of the musicians interpretations along the way.

This album has a collection of many of the early years of songwriting up until 2005.

The earliest work was recorded in Craig Recording Studio in Jenkintown, Pa. in 1977, where it is just her Martin guitar and vocals. “Please Take Care” and “Two Hearts” both digitized, later on, are her favorite “firsts” and also “Candlelight,” which was written about a young girl struggling with the concept of “falling in love” and relationship after loss.

“Two Birds” and “In the Garden” were two pieces written by her partner and husband John Franklin, which she wholeheartedly took on and sang in her own special way, adding to this colorful collection of original music.




"Something That Might Be There" - LAST 25 YEARS - Linda Zapf Franklin