About Dale Connelly

I am a writer living in New Brighton, Minnesota, part of the metropolitan Twin Cities area.

DC Photo 3

I spent 34 years at Minnesota Public Radio as a journalist, producer and disc jockey. It was my privilege to spend a quarter century working with Jim Ed Poole (Tom Keith) as co-host of The Morning Show.

Tom Keith retired in 2008 and I’m sad to say he passed away in October of 2011. His many fans still miss him though his work lives on as part of Prairie Home Companion’s colorful history.

Meanwhile, I ventured into online and HD broadcasting with MPR’s Radio Heartland. My MPR job was eliminated in the summer of 2010.

I host the Trail Baboon blog, take on freelance writing, voice work and consulting projects and do volunteer work for organizations that inspire me.

In June of 2011 I joined KFAI Community Radio at 90.3 FM in Minneapolis and 106.7 FM St. Paul, and currently serve as the station’s news director.

Thanks for visiting. I love to hear from former listeners and current readers, and I’m always open to new ideas and suggestions.

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124 thoughts on “About Dale Connelly”

    1. This is really me if you mean the Dale Connelly that was with MPR for 34 years.

      If you’re looking for Dale Connelly the brilliant theoretical physicist or Dale Connelly the international diplomat / spy / adventurer with a license to kill, you’ve come to the wrong place.

      My new website automatically clicks over to a blog, “Trail Baboon”, so it may be a bit confusing. I’m still trying to figure everything out.

      Welcome!

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      1. I also am among those who miss hearing you. What a loss, to lose the morning Show and you!
        You used to play a song on the radio, something about Raspberries on my knees, but I can’t find it anywhere! In the archives of your mind, might you remember this song?/ Thanks for your help—–Jeannine

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  1. I miss hearing your voice in the morning, but have bookmarked this page to check in from time to time. Any chance you would consider putting up a podcast occasionally for those of us who miss your voice and humor? :)

    Wishing you all the best,
    A Former MPR member (who has considered all that MPR does as per your message, but really only listened to two shows – The Morning Show and Garrison Keillor’s show.

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    1. Thanks FMPRM.
      The podcast idea is intriguing. I don’t have what I need to do it right now, but it is on my list of things to check out. I wouldn’t be able to play more than 30 seconds of any one piece of music in a podcast due to rights issues. Would that be a problem for you as a listener?

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      1. My husband and I would totally pay a member fee to help support being able to hear a radio show hosted by you. Radio Heartland just isn’t the same without you.

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  2. Dale,

    Sure miss you on Radio Heartland and I am still in withdrawal from the loss of The Morning Show.

    Random and half-baked ideas for the future:

    1) Down the road when Garrison is ready, take over his show. Remember when Noah Adams filled in for a year or so. You like Noah would do a great job. Maybe you could give him a break once in a while.

    2) How about a show like “American Routes.” Perhaps you could partner with a college or university radio station that is not connected with MPR (i.e. St. Cloud State University) and use their music collection/rights. The big problem here is $$$, colleges and universities don’t have much cash in this economy, but be your normal creative self and maybe something could happen.

    Hang in there. Have a great father’s day.

    Former 20+ year MPR member.

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    1. Thanks, HB. I appreciate the hopeful suggestions.
      I don’t think there is such a thing as a replacement for GK. It’s hard to imagine anyone carrying on his brand of live, variety show-style radio, but it would be wonderful if it could continue in some form if and when he decides to retire.

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  3. How about taking the show to KBEM? Could even have remote hook up to Jim Ed’s work shop with “Bubby and the band saw”etc. Would gladly pay for podcast download of weekly skit, but really would like to hear live voice during morning drive. Cap’n Billy could learn to do traffic updates!

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    1. Thanks, Jim Bob.
      Captain Billy would be a terribly unreliable traffic reporter. I suspect he would try to route commuters INTO snarls and backups so his “boys” could plunder and pillage gridlocked victims in much the same way bears intimidate the carloads at Yellowstone.

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  4. Dale, assume you are in the wine-down phase of MPR commute? I hate not getting the news with a dose of cowboys or ethel merman. So do you have a non-compete/ If not, come on up to WOMJ for the Objiwii tribe, they play your kinda stuff.

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  5. Hey Dale,
    This may be totally the wrong thing, especially as I am not entirely sure what I am talking about here-but you are used to that from me, I know.

    There is a thing called Blog-talk radio-I don’t think there is a livelihood in it (without some creative marketing, and I am not the baboon for that by a lon g chalk), but it might be a way to be heard.

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    1. Thanks for the idea, Catherine.
      I’m not sure I’m cut out to be a talk radio guy. I like having the option to shut up and play some music. Everyone says dumb things eventually, it’s only a question of how long it takes to wrestle your foot into your mouth.

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  6. Dale – I’m heartbroken. No media change in the landscape could possibly have impacted me more than the end of the Morning Show. It used to be one of the reasons this transplant didn’t seriously contemplate leaving when things weren’t great. But I’m a resilient optimist who makes things work, so I bought 2 HD radios and changed my habits and enjoyed your voice in the morning and Sat evening, although I really missed the skits and banter. Then, your voice was absent and I wondered if you were on vacation or sick. No such luck. You (and Jim Ed) have changed my life in introducing me to music and humor that has lifted and sustained me. I am a sustaining member of MPR, but I feel that the ‘sustaining’ is only one way. Much as I am committed to and love MPR, my loyalty is severely tested. Whatever is next for you will be fresh and new and exciting and I hope won’t mean the end to this blog. I was so happy to find it. Thank you for staying true to your fans, yourself and your world.

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    1. Thanks, LearnwithanH!
      I also miss the Morning Show, but I’m lucky enough to see Jim Ed every now and then. We’ve even played golf a couple of times this summer.
      I appreciate your very kind words and am very glad I was able to be part of something that was so meaningful to you. Thanks for visiting the blog!

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  7. Dale,

    I’m just now getting caught up to the many changes that have again happened to the best show on radio, (HD or otherwise) and I’m torn between bitter and hopeful. I’m a public school teacher and the final days of our year are often very hectic and the first days of June were obviously a bit busy for you as well. Additionally, my family and I have been out on the road and have only learned of your fate recently from a friend. (I just thought you were taking a vacation like I was…)

    First off, thank you for being a bright light for all these years in the otherwise dim landscape of “morning infotainment”. You have entertained, informed, inspired and even helped raise my children, by making us laugh, sing, dance and ultimately now reminisce about the Morning Program with Jim Ed and your numerous cast of characters. We were such loyal fans, we even came and saw your show on numerous occasions, including standing in line in subzero temperatures on your final broadcast. My kids have warm memories of being announced on the Fitzgerald stage by Jim Ed in their Halloween costumes.

    I’m extremely disappointed in the way you were treated by MPR. I’ve always thought that this was a classy organization that operated above the fray. I’ve always used them as the standard by which to compare other public radio services I visit when I travel around the country. I’m sorry to say that image will be forever tarnished. I’m going to have a hard time digging into my pocket during the next fund raiser. So much for my bitterness.

    On the other hand I will remain hopeful and wish you the best in all that you do. You are a bright and creative person. I know you will land in a place where your many talents will be appreciated and cultivated by people who will find you as charming as your many thousands of loyal fans have over the years. Thank you for all that you have done for me and my family. Thank you for the songs, jokes, laughs, interviews and “knowing all and telling only some”. Even on the bleakest of days you and Jim Ed were able to help us land upright on our feet and move forward. I’m confident you will do the same.

    Please keep blogging. While I miss your voice, I can still hear it in your written words.

    Robert Shoemaker
    St. Peter, MN

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    1. Thank you Robert.

      It was a great privilege to spend so many years doing a weekday morning show for the best audience in broadcasting. I mean that sincerely. Our listeners set the tone, and your very generous compliments reflect back on you.

      Take a look around the internet and you will find many places where glum, unhappy people carp and hurl insults at each other all day long. Working on The Morning Show for MPR was the opposite experience. I knew every time I opened the microphone I was speaking with families and individuals who expected the best from me, and high expectations do make a difference.

      We had a lot of fun through the years. It was a collaboration! Thanks for the assist and the good wishes.

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  8. I missed that you were leaving. I noticed some changes in the music. My first recommendation is a book. It better include the baseball/starwars skit. And how many others I couldn’t even guess. I suggest a CD with the book, or I suppose today a memory stick.

    I know that written material is different than spoken, but GK seems to be able to do it.

    I really wish MPR realized that eine kleine nachtmusik is not what we really want at 7:00 AM!

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    1. Thanks Bill.
      It would be wonderful to be able to say I have written a book, but I think it would be horrible to actually try to do it. And many thanks for remembering the baseball/Star Wars bit. That was fun!

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  9. I found your blog! It was fun volunteering together last night. Here is my ancient blog. The pictures that I did manage to add are not there anymore because my internet provider is now an ex-boyfriend. But I always tried to describe everything relatively vividly.

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    1. Thanks for the nod, Katherine, and sorry it took me so long to get to your comment. Volunteering at the Fringe Festival was a hoot – I hope to see you there again next year. Too bad about the ex-boyfriend – ISP conflict. Some systems just don’t interface well.

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  10. Hi Dale – I finally found your blog and have spent most of the morning reading back to the first entries. I was inspired to search for you after a particularly bad set of music on RH this AM, which made me realize all the more acutely how much I miss you and Jim Ed every morning.

    I echo the sentiments here that it will be very tough to support MPR after these bad, bad decisions on their part – but, I stand by and await your next adventure and will be in full support of whatever it is!

    I hope all this good karma turns into your next dream job.

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  11. Dale, you cannot imagine how disappointed I was to discover that you were no longer at MPR. I’d been a fan back when we lived in MN (87 – 97) and a regular listener. In fact, I was a member of MPR primarily because of your show. I was delighted to “discover” you on line, accessible here in the remote mountains of western North Carolina. I will have to confess that, even back in our MN days, I thought that the high muckity-muck at MPR was far more interested in empire building than in broadcasting – your departure is a sad confirmation of that suspicion. You and Jim Ed introduced me to many groups and genres that are with me still – and recently you introduced me to Krista Detour (? spelling). Thanks. And I wish you the very best in the next leg of your journey. If you are ever in western NC, give me a heads-up. Peter B

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  12. Was very sorry when you left MPR (or, I suppose one might say, when MPR took you to the outskirts of town and drove off). Great blog, though–I think the greater flexibility lets your humor really shine. Wish I could help you find ways to get paid for that, but since I’ve been in education my whole career, it’s obvious that I’m a failure at finding gainful employment.

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    1. I wouldn’t use the “f” word, Andy. There are a lot of people who expected their employment to be a lot more gainful than it turned out to be. And there are rewards that have nothing to do with money, although money is always nice to have. At any rate, I have no regrets about my years at MPR. Heck, I had fun! It is taking me a bit longer than I expected to find a place in the non-MPR world, but I know it will all work out in the long run.
      Thanks for the kind words and sympathy Andy.

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  13. Hi Dale,

    Well, I finally figured this out. Mark and I were traveling in June and missed your departure. We are always a bit comatose in the mornings, and we’ve been mumbling as we stumble around in the mornings, “Wonder where Dale is.” Like many, we thought you were on vacation or we missed you while we went down to the kitchen to start the coffee or something. I won’t repeat all that has been said; Mark and I have been your fans since the days we’d ask for birthday requests for our kids, all of whom are grown and gone. Not to make any of us feel old or anything. And we miss you and Jim Ed on the kitchen radio, but things change. I’m glad I found your blog and I look forward to finding out what is next for you. I think you’ll come up smelling like a rose, as my mom always used to say.

    Cheers,

    Keelin

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  14. Dale,
    It’s been a crazy summer and I could not figure out why I was missing you on your show Saturday night. After finding mail I had not opened up for a month and a half it became clear. I listened to both your shows (Morning Show and Saturday evening show without Jim). I gained an appreciation to a wider selection of music.
    Thank you.

    As for suggestions, I still see you associated with an eclectic mix of music. Perhaps a coffee house, restaurant , bar with music and comedy skits throughout. It may be unrealistic and perhaps after all these years with your two shows you prefer meditation over music, but it would be fun to stop by have a beer and listen to the music and banter which were characteristics of your past shows. Or maybe you could sell an idea on TPT. They could use some artistic help.
    Take care and thank you for the many years of music and laughs.

    sincerely,
    Tom

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  15. I’m glad I found your blog. A friend just passed it to me today.

    I do miss hearing you in the morning and hope something good turns up for you soon.

    Are you sure you never played the accordion?

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  16. Hello Dale,
    I am glad to have found your website. I miss you on Radio Heartland, but especially the fun and skits you were able to do when you were on 89.3. We canceled our sustaining membership and sent letters of protest to MPR, but got back a form letter thanking us for our continued support, so I doubt our protest was registered. I wish you all the best and will check on your website now that I have found it. I wish we could find a way to get you back on the air. I keep thinking about songs I would love to request and there’s no way to find them. (What IS the title of the song about could just hear the song about the couple fighting over what they eat? “We both loved junk food at the start. We both ate pastries from the cart…” or something like that. Who sang it. I’ll never know). I doubt that Bill Kling realizes how many of us are slowly being driven mad by your absence, or maybe that was his plan all along… I can’t say I am sorry to see him retire. Hmm, maybe his position would be open for someone with great talent, dedication to and experience with public radio. You have thousands of listeners willing to serve as references!

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    1. Thanks for the compliments, Kris.

      The song you’re thinking about is “Corn Dogs” by The Bobs.
      I believe it is still in the Radio Heartland library, and fortunately Mike Pengra is at the controls. If you have requests, you could try him at mpengra@mpr.org.

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  17. I think we could find room for you at North Dakota public radio. I’m guessing with a minimal investment you could even broadcast from your home. Mile Law at NDPR would be a good first call. I live in Moorhead and found you on the dial (whoops… my age slipped out) not long before you left to try the HD project. Our encounter was brief but memorable, not unlike the girl with the Farrah haircut and the strawberry lipsmackers walking out of the rollerskating rink as I was walking in.

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    1. Thanks for the suggestion Chad. North Dakota is a magnificent place.
      I doubt that I am truly as memorable as the Fawcett-like Big Hair vision you had at the roller rink, but I appreciate the comparison!

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  18. Dale! So great to find you… Trail Babooning and such! I’m coming up there in November. Would you consider being my guest at The Gingko? Beyond that -
    want a record? want a new car? want a pony? Name it. Hope you’re well! Krista

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    1. Thanks for the invitation, Krista. As I hope you know, I’m a fan. Unfortunately I already have plans for that evening, but if anyone is curious about hearing Ms. Detor at the Ginkgo Coffeehouse in St. Paul, the date of the show is Thursday, November 11th.
      I love the new recording! Thanks for tracking me down.
      Now about that car …

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  19. So, this is what has happened. After listening for years in the TC and from here in northern MN on the internet, it appears Dale Connelly will no longer be a part of the best part of the day, the early morning. Summer time, with Mom Nature’s invitation to join her in the beauty of the season, left not enough time to be with you on the computer. Therefore, when an occasional Monday at 7AM would find the speakers venturing forth with the prairie sun encouraging me, but not Dale, wonder did occur. I did attend when you and Jim Ed did the Morning Show from Hibbing several years ago. So enjoyable! A former member of MPR, (I must have all of the Keepers albums) mainly because of the Morning Show, I wish you well in every endeavor. May you, as Walter, enjoy your life dancing with bears.

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  20. Dale,

    Was looking forward to seeing your “About” blurb show up — and it finally has! I appreciate that you give us a little window into your going-ons.

    What is the object (or pair of objects) that you are holding up in your picture? They look like some sort of footwear, but not quite — and having experienced a little of the scope of your capabilities, I daresay I am completely wrong.

    Listening to archived Morning Shows now, on another late night at work…

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    1. Hi MN in Sudbury,
      Thanks for checking in, and for asking that intriguing question.
      The objects in my hands are indeed footwear. They are hard soled shoes that Jim Ed and I used to make the sound of footsteps during some of our on-air sketches. I believe that photo was taken at a show recorded at the Paramount Theater in St. Cloud. Jim Ed has employed those same shoes to make sound effects on some broadcasts of A Prairie Home Companion, though I believe they got lost somewhere along the way. Who knows where they wound up? Check your closet!

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      1. When were you ever in St. Cloud at the Paramount, how in the world would I have missed that? We went to your last broadcast in St. Paul. I miss your Morning Show so much! I never could get you on Heartland Radio through computer or otherwise, until now – and you’re not there!

        I’ve been reading the other comments – so many good things said and memories brought up – I agree with them all!

        Take care! I wish you the best!

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  21. Dale,

    Went to Europe on trip and came back and you were gone!

    Just found you.

    Miss your comments and humor.

    When you find new hope you let all your fans know.

    20+ year fan

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  22. Like so many of your other readers, I was appalled to find you missing from Radio Heartland. I am a Former 20+ year MPR member. I hate to remove my support from a radio station that introduced me to you & Jim Ed and so much wonderful music. But I found it necessary to make my voice heard…although a little late. (Is it naive to think MPR management cares what the (now-ex) members think?)
    I wish I was creative enough to come up with some ideas for your next stop, but creativity is YOUR strength, not mine. That’s why I listened to the Morning Show for so long. I’m hoping I will see you at the Ann Reed concert this weekend, or at a performance of some other artist that I learned about on your show.
    Peace and happiness to you and your family.
    Ellen

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    1. Thank you Ellen. Sorry I didn’t make it to Ann’s concert, but she and I still meet for breakfast every now and then. She’s one of my favorite performers and a wonderful person too! Thanks for the support and kind wishes.

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  23. Dale, there is STILL a disturbing void where the Morning Show, and then your presence on Radio Heartland, was. You – and Jim Ed – were the “umph,” the upbeat presence, the joy of the day. There is nothing to replace what you gave to us! We wish you well, but we miss you very much!

    Two Iowans

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  24. Dale-
    I am a fellow New Brighton resident. Like everyone else here, I thought of the Morning Show as my home on the radio, and you as my favorite uncle/brother/friend in music. Nothing has been the same since. I depended on you to for introductions to new artists. I could name so many – Avett Brothers, Wood Brothers, James Hunter . . . I like Tom McGough’s idea of a bar/restaurant with live music – particularly if it’s in New Brighton. I would be a regular!

    Yours,

    John

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    1. Thanks John. It’s a pleasure to hear from a fellow New Brightoner.
      Tom’s idea of a bar/restaurant with live music is a good one, but I don’t think I’m the person to pull it off. One has to have a lot of energy and sociability to succeed in that business, plus a healthy amount of fearlessness. Strike three, I’m afraid.

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  25. Dear Dale,

    I’m way behind the times in just discovering you are no longer on Radio Heartland. I grew up listening to MPR, and remember back when the Morning Show was the Prairie Home Morning Show with GK and Jim-Ed. I loved listening to you and Jim-Ed, Cap’n Billy, Genway Corp. and all the rest for so many years, which I checked in on via internet from various undisclosed locations around the globe. I was heartened by the Radio Heartland experiment, always pulling up your show for a good listen (later in the day, not a morning person!). For various reasons I hadn’t done so recently, and so was astonished just today to discover you are no longer there. I do hope that the Trail Baboon is well on his way to finding that new path for you. We are all looking forward to more wonderful things from you.

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  26. I’m another “wonder-what-happened-to-Dale Connelly?” fan. Just went through all the letters to your blog since June and and up came a blanks space for my turn. Like many others, my wife and I were early fans of Garrison Keillor in the morning and listened to Dale and Jim Ed continue providing us with a cosmopolitan feast of tasty sounds served up with good humor. Like the others who wrote, we would like more but are greatful for what we received. May you continue to enjoy a rich life.

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  27. A suggestion – how about organizing the comments to the blog so the most recent is at the top. I hadn’t been to the site for a while and ended up re-reading a lot of the same old posts before coming to the most recent additions which were at the bottom of the page.

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  28. Dale, i just heard your voice on All Things Considered; am also a huge Bob and Ray fan, have the cd in fact.
    i’ve missed you on the radio, hope you are doing well

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  29. Dale —

    As I mail out my XMas letters (pretty late, I know) and think of the things I’m thankful for, you & Jim Ed are on the list. Thanks for years of great music, commentary and very original pieces. I miss it sorely. At least the musical robot version of you lives on…

    David Johnson
    Eden Prairie

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    1. Thanks for taking the time to leave some kind words, David. I’m grateful to have had the chance to entertain you, and I’ll speak for Jim Ed in this case and say that he is too! Merry Christmas to you and your family in Eden Prairie!

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  30. I don’t get to this blog as often as I had planned, but can see I am missing a great exchange of whimsy & fun. Dale, are you doing or planning anything else that we can listen to?

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    1. Hi Linda,
      It’s nice of you to stop by.
      The only thing in the pipeline right now that you can listen to is a half hour profile of the local trio The Brass Kings. I produced it for KFAI in Minneapolis and have handed it in, but I’m not sure when it will be broadcast. Sometime in January is my expectation – I’ll let you know as soon as I find out.
      Thanks for asking!

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  31. Happy New Year Dale!

    Life got busy and I drifted away from regular Radio Heartland listening when you no longer came on until after I was on the HD-Radio-less road but was very much saddened when I found you gone. Having been a Morning Show listener from even before your time, I had become accustomed to your wit and wisdom as an integral part of my morning routine and now that I can’t get my Dale fix it’s like the sun rises in the south; not quite right but life goes on.

    I miss your voice and look forward to hearing it again so I’ll have to keep my eyes open for the KFAI show. In the mean time, I like the lemonade you’re serving up here!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment, Mark. Unfortunately, most people ride an HD-less road, which made succeeding there a more difficult goal than I imagined.
      Once I get a date for the KFAI show I’ll post it in a blog entry. Plus, KFAI’s Legacy Project work and other productions from independent Minnesota Public Radio stations can be found online at http://www.ampers.org

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  32. Good Morning, Dale. I woke up early this morning and in the “blue hour” just before dawn, I missed your voice. I guess years and years of listening to the Morning Show somehow arranged the dendrites in my brain to associate you and Jim Ed with cold mornings, hot coffee, and your warm humor.

    So to the computer I go and tune into Radio Heartland . . . oh my. Well, I found you–silent but still here, thank goodness. My disappointment in MPR is profound.

    My job was “eliminated” too so I kind of know how you feel. Hang in there. And take care. I’ll check in with you from now on. If I come up with any great ideas, I’ll let you know. Know that we all miss you–a lot. My brain tells me so.

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    1. Thanks Kristy. I actually miss having to get up early to get to work on these brutally cold mornings – somehow the chill was lessened by having a job to do and a place to be.
      Good luck with your job search!

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  33. Dale,
    Each March, our church does a variety show called “Grace Home Companion.” (Note that I said “variety” show and not “talent” show. We’re long on variety and short on talent.) My friends and I used to get ideas for our act from the Morning Show. We’ve done many Berryman songs, Lime Jello Marshmallow Cottage Cheese Surprise, Middle-aged Body With Teenage Emotions, Househusband Macho, etc. Could you recommend any other funny songs we might try or artists we should consult? Thanks for your suggestions and the many years of starting my day with a smile.
    Mary Everley

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    1. Hi Mary,

      Thanks for visiting my website and asking a question about funny songs.

      You have already hit all the high points as far as I’m concerned with the Berrymans, Househusband Macho, Middle Aged Body, etc.
      Since I no longer have the daily duty of putting together a radio show, I’m not up to date on the latest humorous songs and/or bands. Everything seems a bit too serious right now in general and I’m not sure who is taking the risk of injecting humor into music.

      The Austin Lounge Lizards were always a favorite, though much of their material is not appropriate for church.

      Otherwise there is the occasional song that pops up from time to time. Among local musicians, Ann Reed might be your best bet. She’s a humorous person and has written a few funny songs, including “Forgot My Shoes”, “Power Tools” and “Styrofoam”. You’d have to contact her directly for permission through her website, annreed.com.

      I wish I had a long list for you. Alas, the comedy music field is largely deserted as far as I can tell. Maybe you should write some of your own!

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  34. Hi Dale,

    You may have already caught wind of this, but if not I imagine you and The Babooners would be interested – Archie Fisher and Garnet Rogers will performing together at Celtic Junction on Wednesday, March 30th, at 7:30 pm.

    Cheers,
    Nils

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      1. It was really fun. It had the feel of two friends sitting down together to make music just for the love of the music — it was as if they were as much playing for each other as they were playing for us. Garnet and Archie’s personalities are wonderful foils and complements to one another. Archie talked about learning songs from people he called “song keepers”; and sitting in front of him made one realize that we were in the presence of a truly amazing song keeper. They ended with “The Final Trawl” and then segued directly into Stan Roger’s “Make and Break Harbor”, both of which were quite moving. I think it would be accurate to say that there was probably nobody in the room who wanted the evening to end.

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  35. How nice to have found you online again.

    I kept the web page from the final broadcast of the “Morning Show” as my home page until it wouldn’t reload recently. Feeling a bit nostalgic I decided to play a few of your archived interviews. I know, get a life and move on, but I do miss your unique humor, music selections and those oh-s0-very Midwest guests. RoboDJ is just not the same.

    I hope you are well. More than that, I hope you have an opportunity to return to radio in the future!

    Your loyal listener from the 1998 South Pole winter-over crew,

    Carol

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  36. Hi Dale, we miss the morning show. We are looking for the name of a funny piece you used to play occasionally on your show. My wife remembers that you called it the “laughing song” and that it was an operatic selection sung by a tenor who made a mistake and started laughing but continued singing and laughing. I hope you can remember the name and we will try to find a recording. We have a friend who needs a laugh right now and we think it will help. Thank you for your help. —-Roger

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    1. Hi Roger,

      You’re thinking of Rudy Vallee’s incredible break-up on “A Tavern In The Town”, also called “The Drunkard’s Song”. It has been posted on You Tube as an audio only experience. The decorum dissolves around 1:38 into the piece.

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  37. This was in yesterday’s NY Times. I’m sending it becasue I remember years ago (20?) one of the sponsors of the Morning Show was the Drivers Book of the Month Club and one of the suggested holiday gifts was a devise to attach to the steering wheel so the driver could read more easily. Well, as usual, you were ahead of the crowd and 20 years later after someone had to invent an iPad and the apps concept, the device came to the regular market:

    The GoSmart Clip: A Well-Made Bad Idea
    By ROY FURCHGOTT
    The GoSmart Clip is the best engineered bad idea I’ve seen in a long time.

    The GoSmart Clip lets drivers attach a phone to a car’s steering wheel, which might not be so smart.The GoSmart is a cleverly designed bracket that lets you mount a mobile phone to a car’s steering wheel. It is being sold as a safety device that keeps your phone within easy reach while driving.

    There is no denying that it is a solid little item. Its plastic armature has rubbery retainers at the top and bottom and it ratchets shut to lock your phone into the bracket.

    The bracket itself then fits on your steering wheel, attached by another rubbery strap.

    The press release promises “no more missed calls because your phone will be easily and safely accessible and viewable right in front of you!”

    With what has been learned about distracted driving – that talking on the phone, even hands-free, is as dangerous as driving drunk – making it easy to use a phone behind the wheel is like arguing that installing a Jim Beam dispenser on the dashboard saves drivers from the distraction of looking for a bar.

    O.K., I suppose you could argue that if you are using the phone as a GPS, this puts the map right in front of you where it is easy to see. But because the GPS burns lots of power quickly, it really requires a battery cable for drives of an hour or more. Good luck with that cable in your first hard turn.

    If you insist on buying one, they are available online for $26 each, or $40 a pair.

    In the meantime, most cars already come equipped with an excellent mobile phone holder, and it’s the perfect place to keep your phone whenever you are driving. It’s called the glove box.

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    1. Hi jaime,

      I remember the Driver’s Book of the Month Club! Thanks for reminding me. Jim Ed and I thought it was funny because the notion of reading and driving at the same time was so ludicrous – no one would ever do it. Little did we know!

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  38. Dale – New to the blog here…great stuff. I greatly enjoyed your days with MPR. Wondering if you could help me with the title of a song you used to play. I believe it was played nearly every Monday morning. Had a twangy, country feel to it and for the life of me cannot remember the artist/title. I realize that description is quite vague but if you do recall, and can mention it in the Comments, it’d be greatly appreciated. Keep up the great work!

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    1. Thanks for checking in, Chris. I’m seeing your comment more than a month after you wrote it, and I’ve already noticed that Stephanie came to the rescue. Thanks, Stephanie!

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  39. Hi Dale! I grew up listening to the Morning Show on MPR and miss all of the skits and songs. Is there any possibility that you could post a playlist of some of the songs you used to broadcast on the show, so that we can at least attempt to recreate the experience? I have the lime jello song and a few others, but would like to expand my “Morning Show” playlist. Thanks!

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  40. A playlist would be great. We were just sitting around surfing Youtube for “Why am I painting the living room” by Lou and Peter Berryman, but also wanted to find the one about the french horn, and “older than everybody”. No luck on those yet. Best wishes, and keep having fun.

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  41. Hi Dale,

    I just wanted to let you know how much the Mr and I miss the morning show. Life’s been pretty bleak these last years. Even bleaker without you guys on the radio. When I was a kid my mom listened to WCCO all the time. I remember they had a spot every morning called waltz around the kitchen, and we would all waltz around the kitchen, with a play by play from Roger Erickson or one of those fellows. I didn’t know it then, but it’s rare to have a neighbor in your radio. It would be so great for a lot of us if you could come back. We miss you.

    Eileen

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    1. Thanks for the nice comment, Eileen! The glory days of ‘CCO were a rare and wonderful time – we didn’t know how quickly all that would be gone. Same for The Morning Show. I’m glad we had the chance to do the show for you. If you want to take a trip back in time, you should pay a visit to the Pavek Museum of Broadcasting in St. Louis Park. Fun place, with lots of memories.

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    1. Thanks for the prod, MiG. It’s true that I have a new radio gig – I’m news director at KFAI Community Radio at 90.3 FM in Minneapolis and 106.7 FM in St. Paul. Tune in for the music and the news and public affairs programming, but don’t expect to hear me on the air very often. The station is volunteer centered – most everyone you hear on the air does it for love, not a paycheck. If you’d like to volunteer to be a reporter or news reader in our department, please write to me at daleconnelly@kfai.org.

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  42. What grand news that you are back on air. No, when are you coming to the Souith for a breath of pleasant air? Peter B

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  43. It is nice that you are back on the air, even a little. My children, now 28 and 31 associate the music you played on the morning show with growing up…with Minnesota. They heard them every morning before and on the way to school. One of my happy discoveries about the internet was that I could listen to the morning show at my desk in Savannah, GA. I even joined MPR from GA because of that service. I moved to CA nine years ago and lost track because of the time difference.
    Much of my taste in music came from your programs….I built my lake house listening to you every morning and associate much of my happy memories of those years in MN (79-2000) with the Keepers songs and and the Myst Lake congressional district. Paul B

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  44. Hi Dale: I am not sure you’ve ever really addressed your “lay off” from MPR but as a former broadcaster myself I can’t help but be very, very curious as to what “really” happened ;over there. After 34 years and all you DID for them that they couldn’t find a job to keep you on is simply not believable. I know the many 100′s of hours you must have spent creating comedy, characters and MATERIAL for The Morning Show and your own show and I know a lot of that writing had to be off the clock. Unless you have a “don’t say anything nasty” clause in your retirement agreement with Mn. Public Radio I think the time should come soon for you to tell your story. Your creation “Radio Heartland” now has a Zombie female android voicing the recorded announcements with no personality whatsoever and the other oddball voices they’ve recently hired are an insult to a proud history you played so great a role in creating. The wound won’t heal without a good cleaning out. Why not bring out the bleach and finally clean up the mess MPR made. I hate to play this card Dale but some of Us listeners really cared about your craft and passion for doing an entertaining show day after day, year after year. That you would go without a peep and seemingly without a fight just seemed and STILL SEEMS very wrong. What’s the story? Larry Ripp
    P.S. I will never, ever forget the bit with the Monkey being put into the Rembrant painting and the back and forth letters you created between the Client and the artist. One of the funniest things I’ve ever heard on radio. Bob and Ray territory.

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  45. This morning I was making breakfast for my grandson, now living with me, and had the radio on. The news was suddenly announcing horrible stuff that just wasn’t appropriate for an 11 yr old at 7 AM about to start his day. I started scanning the FM stations and remembered “The Morning Show” so long ago when my children were sitting at the same table getting ready to go to the same school. My grandson asked me why I was changing the channel and I explained to him, “Well, this other station is just a better one to listen to when you are starting off your day.” I then proceeded to tell him all about your show, how you had this wonderful relationship with Jim Ed, how you interjected humor into most everything and how my son came to love “Surry With The Fringe on Top” in German. Later in High School he took German and I think it was all because of that song!
    But, alas, I could not find you on the radio and so we just had some quiet music play instead. But I got my grandson so interested in your morning show that he seemed to be really looking forward to hearing it, and said, “Maybe tomorrow at our next breakfast Grandma”.
    After he got on the school bus, and I did some internet research, I have found out that it was cancelled in 2008. My kids were grown and gone by 2001 and sadly I guess that is about how long it has been since I made a 7 AM breakfast until just recently. Reading all the blogs here just makes me want your show back all the more!
    Thanks for all the wonderful and funny memories, for starting our day off with a smile and even a laugh all because of you two! If your shows ever get put to CD I will be first in line to start replaying them. You were appreciated even if I never told you until now.

    Sincerely,
    Elizabeth,
    Cannon Falls, MN

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  46. Dale: I have a friend who works at KFAI who I’m working working with on Old Time Radio shows LIVE ON STAGE. My pal is Jerry Stearns, Great guy, GREAT sound effects guy. Says he sees you once in a while. Hope the gig is going well for you there. Larry Ripp

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  47. Mr. Connelly gave up the morning show because it had no support from MPR. I thought a fight was in order to save the show but I guess Mr. Connelly decided to move on and not try to battle for the program. When I read letters like yours however I see how wrong that decision was. Minnesota Public Radio decided it was more in their interest to broadcast unlistenable music on The Current rather than support folk and roots music which is MUCH more in keeping with public radio programming. We vote with our pocketbooks and as long as MPR keeps fulfilling their pledge drive quotas, they will continue to ignore public demand and just do what they please. There must be a penalty for their actions but they didn’t suffer any economic fallout by canceling The Morning Show, hence, no morning show. It’s that simple.

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  48. I of course await your thoughts Dale on the passing of one of the great talents in Radio, Tom Keith. My profound condolences…

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  49. Dale, You must feel bereft – certainly I do. As I’ve said earlier, you and Tom made our 10 years in Minnesota the best ten radio years in our lives. What remains on MPR is but a faint echo – so faint as to be unrecognizable. So I listen to Pandora, where I am my own listening guide, unable to rely on your and Jim Ed’s taste to direct me to intriguing music. I think of you both, often, when Pandora plays someone you introduced me to. Thanks be to you both. Peter B

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  50. Dear Dale,
    I just heard about Tom/Jim Ed on All Things Considered. Though they gave a nice tribute, it just touched the surface of his gifts. I treasure all the years I had the privilege of listening to him, first on The Prairie Home Morning Show, and then on The Morning Show with you. I and the rest of us listeners were so blessed by the two of you who brought us music and so much more for so many years. I am grateful that I have the c/d of your final show, a tape of your 10th anniversary show (which I attended! what a delight!), and a DVD with Tom doing wonderful sound effects behind Dusty and Lefty’s song. He will certainly be missed on the Twin Cities Prairie Home Companion shows.
    I am delighted to hear that you are part of the KFAI family; wish I could listen (even though I wouldn’t be hearing your voice). Can I find KFAI online? Perhaps you will consider doing something like Dave Moore’s old “Bedtime News”?
    Blessings,
    Laurel, from somewhere near Asheville, NC (yes, the Cesspool of Sin; see http://www.shelbystar.com/articles/raleigh-58431-marriage-ban.html for an explanation; what’s great is how it got turned into a pledge device for our local NPR station by Peter Sagal of Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me)

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  51. Dear Dale,
    Just listening to the final Morning Show, and the perfect tribute song for Tom is Ann Reed’s “Coffee Tasted Better” (when you were here). (That goes for both of you.)
    Laurel

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  52. Now that Dale has written something I feel I too can comment on the passing of the Great Tom Keith. Radio is a VERY tough racket that sounds easy. It eats announcers and spits em back out without a sidelong glance. Dale and Tom didn’t do heart transplants or drive race cars but you can bet that they both had to be perfectly on the ball every second they were on the air every day. And as a “team” they also had to work together perfectly. It ain’t easy, none of it. Just ask The Beatles. The Morning Show had a Heart and a Soul. Which guy was which? I don’t know and that was the beauty of Dale and Jim Ed.
    I know, “hey, ain’t this supposed to be a tribute to Tom Keith?” Well, when you had 2 very, very talented people who were willing to team it up, all for one and one for all for over 25 years, I don’t see how you can single one guy out even on this sad occasion. Suffice to say, Tom, I admired you and your work from the moment I first heard you on the air in 1980. Rest in peace. Dale, thank YOU for keeping Jim Ed on when you took over The Show and always bringing out the best in him and his talents.

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  53. We finally found you. Breakfast isn’t the same without you and J.E. Poole (what a very deep loss to us all) and then just you on that Radio Heartland thing. You must find a way to get back on the air and start playing those wonderfully wacky songs we grew to love. We still quote and sing them all the time. We’ll keep an eye on this site in hopes of finding your future on the air.

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  54. I very much agree. Mr. C. certainly needs to be on the air and playing the Great Music from the Heartland that we loved on the Morning Show. The lost story of Radio Heartland is Tom Keith would have liked to work part time and appear with Dale on radio heartland from time to time after he “retired” but MPR didn’t take him up on it. They wanted an automated music service from the beginning and thus the shabby treatment Dale got from them after 3 decades of service. He deserves better and the true, faithful Public Radio listeners deserve something other than The Current. Jazz moved to KBEM, why not our tremendous folk heritage? Dale, KBEM would love to have you I bet. Or perhaps the HD side of the Cities 97. They are 2/3′s of the way there already with there HD programming. Call them…

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  55. Just found this blog. Will have to explore it more.
    In the 80′s I commuted from Rochester to St. Paul (and later Bloomington) almost every weekday morning. I was privileged to listen to you for two hours in the morning. (I also brag that during that period of my life I was more informed of news of the world than at any time before or since as I also listened to two hours of All Things Considered each evening).

    I thank you for keeping me entertained and sane during a that period in my life. I was very sorry to hear about Tom. I still have the wooden rock trophy he made for winning the rock skipping contest when you had the live broadcast from Silver Lake in Rochester.

    Thank you for the fond memories of Camp Town Car Wash, Miss Morals, Incredible Betty, Worldly Goods, Genway (still have the T shirt), Billy Marty Barry (before he got successful and dropped his first name), the political race for Minnesota’s Ninth Congressional Seat, Straight Strung Strings, the Hubble – a very sensitive satellite, and all the great music and artisans I never would have heard about if it wasn’t for your show.

    Good luck on your new endeavors, and hope I get to hear more of your work.

    Tom A.

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  56. Would love to collect many of those songs but am finding it difficult. There was so much diversity and unexpected combinations of music. I found a few collections online at amazon but I’m not sure if they really have the best stuff. Contacting MPR didn’t prove helpful. How can I get some of your favorite selections…or listeners choices from your many years at the Morning Show?

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  57. After I changed jobs and stopped a 1.5 hour commute in the morning, I wasn’t able to listen to as much morning show as I could, but I did turn on a tape recorder now and then, and compiled about 20 ninety minute cassette tapes of the morning show. I could get a list of songs and artists (I didn’t always get them. It’s especially bad for instrumental music.) I’ could post some names here. (Note: I am not posting music, so no copyright violation is going on).

    Tom A.

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  58. Anyone wanting to listen to some of the great songs we heard on “The Morning Show” would do well to search for the collection of “Seekers” CDs that were recorded over the years. They represent the crem de la crem of some of the finest wake-up music ever composed.

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  59. I found your blog with a good tip from a friend! I was a Morning Show listener from the day it started and I still miss it. Some of the best humor and writing I have ever heard was on your’s and Jim Ed’s show.
    I loved Bud Buck and will never forget seeing two big draft horses at the Rollag Steam Thresher’s Fall Bash..their names were Bud and Buck!!!!

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  60. You know EVERYBODY misses The Morning Show. And now that Tom is gone it can never return right? No. Dale C. is loaded with talent and charm that was cut dead TOO SOON! It is wrong that He is Not On The Air. If he doesn’t want to be that’s ONE THING but then he should say so to Us who long to have him back so that we can move on. As it is, my feeling is the Mornng Show concept is simply in limbo and if Dale has the will, there is a place for it somewhere on the air in this town. Also, Jim Ed can not be replaced. BUT a NEW personality I would think could be found to work with Dale. Come on! We have 2 big cities just loaded with talent but no place to listen to Anne Reed or Cement Mixer. BRING IT BACK!!!

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  61. Tonight I was reading/listening through the Smithsonian Folkways collection of American Folk, and it made me think of you and Jim Ed. So I Googled you and landed at Trial Baboon (GREAT name!). I’m thrilled to find a spot where I can regularly enjoy your gentle, ironic, off-beat writings. For 15 years, I started my day with The Morning Show. I own all of the Keepers CDs. I will never stop missing you guys. RIP Jim Ed. Thanks for still amusing us Dale. I wish somebody was bright enough to allow you another broadcast forum.

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  62. Hello Dale, I been listening to archives of your old morning show all afternoon. ‘Think your eclectic, entertaining musical choices are still unmatched. Why not get a slot for your musical musings on KFAI? All best,

    Littia

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    1. I agree and I think 88.5 might like something like that for the mornings as well. I know they are Jazz but I think Dale’s great taste in music could accommodate them and STILL have that Morning Show flavor.

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      1. Also Dale seems to be making a point to not comment on anything having to do with the old morning show or any “future” plans he may have so anything we might suggest is just throwing stuff out into the ether with an unknown effect…

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  63. Hi, Dale.
    Trying to get a lunch together with Dan O, Tom M, and Neal. (aka the “old guys”)
    email if you’d like to join us.
    Paul K

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  64. Your keepers CD’s were always so priceless. I’ve misplaced mine. The one I tremendously miss is from 2001 – so many fine songs of encouragement. Is it possible to obtain a playlist of the songs on Keeper CD’s (2001 especially) so I can buy the songs separately from iTunes? I assume the discs are out of production as I’ve been unable to find them anywhere.

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  65. Dale:

    How could I get a copy of a “Hubble Interview”? We had Jennifer Wiseman the principle astrophysicist for the Hubble talk at my church recently. I’ve got her Email, and would dearly love to send her the “Hubble Interview(s)”…I think it would be a big hit. She was unaware of that clever work?

    Mark H. Minnetonka

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  66. Dear Dale,
    I’m a picture researcher for publishing houses in São Paulo, Brazil and I need your help about the photography copyright’s of the post ” Neighborhood Art”, please.
    I’m working in a language text book for high school educational system (with circulation only in Brazil) and our editors would like to reproduce the images from the article published by Anna Bliss (http://daleconnelly.com/2013/07/16/neighborhood-art).
    So, I would like to know how we can obtain the authorization and the high resolution images for this text book, please.
    My e-mail is renata.illustrare(@)gmail.com
    Thank you.

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  67. Hi Dale,
    You sure have a lot of followers. I checked out your web site, how about having a look at mine?(especially if you like music).
    Leslie

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