About Me

I, Dale Blanshan, am a slightly aging gentleman with a guitar and a penchant for stories and music from days gone by.  I offer through this medium my humble justification for suggesting exploration of certain possibilities that could be mutually beneficial.I was educated in the grade schools of Nebraska, the high schools of Minnesota, and an embarrassing number of institutions of higher learning, at which I accumulated several degrees, including a B.S.L.. a Juris Doctorate, and a Bachelor of Humanities, summa cum laude, which, roughly translated, means “human, very loud.”My real education, though, outside of having a wife and nine children, came from my sainted mother’s piano and my minister father’s Sunday school, where I developed a love for all things musical and historical.  (Well, not quite all – what will those heavy metal listeners sing when they’re eighty?)  Along the way I learned to strum a guitar, collected reams of old music, and read the entire encyclopedia.

One day it occurred to me, while sitting amongst the clutter and debris of several different professions, that what I really loved to do was to sing and tell stories.  There was no getting around it.  If I had my druthers, I’d spend hour after hour with the stories and music of days gone by, the poetry, chronicle, and soul of the nation.  From that revelation it was but a step to the next, namely, “I do have my druthers!” (Did I mention that I have a hard-working and patient spouse?) The rest, as they say, is history, though much of it – reasonable compensation, for example – has displayed remarkable tenacity in clinging to the future.

Since the foregoing revelations, I have been having a rollicking good time taking a musical and historical cruise around southern Minnesota, northern Iowa, eastern Wisconsin, and even the far reaches of eastern North Dakota, carrying baskets full of song and story to numerous libraries, historical societies, senior living sites, and an odd assortment of other places.  A whole new field of artistry has blossomed before my delighted eyes.  (It is an art, you know.  A developing one, to be sure, but even Picasso took years to learn to paint so that nobody could recognize what he was painting.)

I paint, but with narration, rhythm, and melody.  I paint smiles and memories.  On my palette there are pioneers in their westbound oxcarts and Conestoga wagons, songs into the night with the cowboys in the cattle-drive camps, shucking bees and maple sugarings, rides on the rails, drifting tumbleweeds, moonlight strolls with sweethearts and their beaus, and the laments of jilted lovers and sadder but wiser maids.  It isn’t Picasso or Rembrandt. It’s Norman Rockwell.

But let’s get down to business.  You may be at this website because you, the hard-working curator of the local historical society or director of activities at the local care center, are looking for something informative, therapeutic, and fun for your residents and patrons.  What luck that we found each other!

Here’s what we can do:   Give me a ring or drop me a note.    You provide the audience, and I’ll provide the programs.  We’ll find a time for some tuneful, harmonious singing, or for an engaging, interactive multimedia program.  I’m sure we’ll be kindred spirits.

You can reach me by telephone, if you are patient enough or don’t mind voice mail, at 507-696-3412.  Better would be a note to dablanshan@yahoo.comso that I have my calendar at hand when I hear from you.

My home base is Rochester, Minnesota.  The charge for my services depends upon the type of institution, the travel time from here to there, and, of course, the almighty price of petrol.  I’ll do my best to be reasonable and affordable. Let’s get together!

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