ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Donald Davenport and Harry Musselwhite were kings of social distancing prior to the pandemic.
It’s just a part of their life.
The two men are the co-hosts of the podcast “The Dungball Express,” which is in its third season.
Musselwhite lives in Los Lunas, while Davenport lives in Santa Fe.
Nearly 100 miles separates them, yet that’s never been a problem as technology steps in to ease the burden.
“Harry and I met about three or four years ago,” says Davenport. “I had won a screenplay competition in Santa Fe and it involved a live performance. Harry was brought in to do the music. What we discovered was that we made sense to each other. Our backgrounds are similar and we have a lot to say.”
From that friendship, the podcast formed.
“The Dungball Express” discuss issues on the experiences and challenges of creating in New Mexico.
Both men have a long history in the entertainment industry and each brings those trials to the microphone.
Musselwhite is a professional singer, writer and conductor. He’s also a college professor at University of New Mexico and has become active in the entertainment industry with voiceover work, as well as scoring films.
Meanwhile, Davenport has a long career in the business. He teamed up with Kenny Rogers on a book which was made into a film by Hallmark Channel called “Christmas in Canaan.”
“I’ve done six movies for Hallmark,” Davenport says. “I used to live out in Los Angeles and doing commercials. It regulated my creative efforts to writing. Harry and I have stuff that is on hold because of the pandemic. The podcast has always been something where we can start a conversation.”
The most recent episode was released on Stitcher, and features Steve Longi of Longitude Entertainment. The topics discussed range from producing the Oscar-winning “Hacksaw Ridge” to alien abduction, along with a wealth of tips for getting your project into the right hands.
For the season three premiere episode, the pair talked with independent filmmaker Butch Nelson, who brought a trainload of production stories, from religious broadcasters to industrial film crises to blinding commuter traffic on famed US 101.
Of course, there’s always local filmmakers featured on the podcast as well. For the March 16 podcast, the duo welcomed producer Terry Borst, who talked about his feature film, “2-Way,” as well as challenges for indie filmmakers in New Mexico.
One podcast also featured Sharon Anne Henderson, who is a Native American-Hispanic writer and actress.
She discussed her journey from small town New Mexico to a prestigious East Coast College and her break into the film industry.
“Sharon Anne Henderson was a really good episode because we got into diversity issues,” Davenport says. “Those are always hot-button issues that need to be addressed.”
In addition to the podcast, Musselwhite and Davenport are working on a New Mexico set screenplay called “The Penny.”
It’s based on “The Pearl” by John Steinbeck.
“With the influx of NBCUniversal and Netflix in the state it’s time to talk the talk,” Davenport says. “Below the line people are doing fine with work. But we want to create something and be above the line. We would write a custom-tailored New Mexico set screenplay that would be easier to cast for local talent.”
With social distancing still in effect, the two men have become masters of remotely logging in and connecting.
“We both have studio spaces in our home,” Davenport says.
“One of the more interesting podcasts we have done is a remote recording from the Alvarado in Albuquerque,” Musselwhite chimes in. “We both took the Rail Runner to do the podcast.”
“Coming back, we were in the train car under the horn. I had to go back into our audio and clean up the train ambiance,” Davenport interjects.
All joking aside, the pair put out a new podcast about every two weeks.
“It’s something that we enjoy doing,” Davenport says. “It’s keeping the narrative open. The feedback has been amazing and we try to do something with it.”