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Mister Sports, Mister Action, Mister Jim Ed Poole
October 31, 2011 7:46 PM   Subscribe


 
What's the sound that a dot makes?
posted by mudpuppie at 7:48 PM on October 31, 2011


 
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:53 PM on October 31, 2011


dot
posted by localhuman at 7:56 PM on October 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


A voice will be missing from Saturday afternoons at home from my family.

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posted by Countess Elena at 7:57 PM on October 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


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posted by mikelieman at 7:57 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by gauche at 7:58 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by briank at 7:58 PM on October 31, 2011


A true master. Here's Garrison and Tom doing a well-worn carol and breathing new life into it as nobody else could.

Those two hours every weekend will never be the same.

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posted by hippybear at 7:58 PM on October 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


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posted by blob at 7:58 PM on October 31, 2011


Oh no!
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posted by Kat Allison at 8:00 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by eriko at 8:01 PM on October 31, 2011


dot
posted by Ranucci at 8:02 PM on October 31, 2011


The Awl had a nice piece about him as well.
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 8:03 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by tdismukes at 8:10 PM on October 31, 2011


 
posted by JHarris at 8:13 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by Elly Vortex at 8:14 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by janelikes at 8:18 PM on October 31, 2011


This is sad. I've long thought Prairie Home Companion has run its course, but I'd rather the people outlive it than the other way around.
posted by cjorgensen at 8:21 PM on October 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


Oh, no! So sad.

*plink*

(That's the sound a dot makes.)
posted by brundlefly at 8:24 PM on October 31, 2011 [3 favorites]


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posted by agatha_magatha at 8:28 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by Bibliogeek at 8:29 PM on October 31, 2011


He was great in the film version of PHC. Stole the scene from Keillor and Meryl Streep.
posted by book 'em dano at 8:32 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by oddman at 8:35 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by shakespeherian at 8:37 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by entropicamericana at 8:39 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by LobsterMitten at 8:40 PM on October 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


Beyond the initial shock --

I'm sure he'll mostly be remembered for his work on PHC, but to me -- well, there were years and years of my life when every morning started with Dale and Jim Ed on The Morning Show (is there any current analogue for the relationship people used to have with regular radio shows?). I can recall so many, many pitch-black pre-dawn a.m.s, with the clock radio clicking on at 5:30 to let me know Twenty-five below, forty below windchill, ten inches of new snow, and the only thing softening the blow, and giving me the strength to crawl out of the warm bed and into a new day, was some Dale and Jim Ed banter, then a round of Mr. Sports, Mr. Action, and then maybe Little Potato, or Poor Kitty Popcorn, or Greg Brown singing about canned goods or daughters.

Farewell, sir, and thanks for so many mornings of giving me the strength to do what needed to be done.
posted by Kat Allison at 8:42 PM on October 31, 2011 [11 favorites]


2nd every darn bit of what Kat just said.

Dot.
posted by drhydro at 8:59 PM on October 31, 2011


I have laughed myself to tears at more than one seemingly impossible Tom Keith sound effect pile-up.

I'm so sad to hear this.
posted by minervous at 9:05 PM on October 31, 2011 [1 favorite]


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I haven't been a regular PHC listener for a while, but I always loved when a bit was clearly designed to really challenge Tom Keith. "Suddenly, a bongo playing Canadian goose honked as it dropped from the sky, and crashed in the open flatbed of a truck carrying the local Unitarian handbell choir." He went too young.

And I think a dot makes the >pop< sound you get when you pull your finger out of your cheek.
posted by booksherpa at 9:10 PM on October 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


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posted by me3dia at 9:16 PM on October 31, 2011


Damn. Everything Kat said above, and more about the Morning Show. My son and I woke up to their voices all those years... Goodbye Mr. Sports, Mr. Action, Mr. Jim Ed Poole.
posted by sea at 9:29 PM on October 31, 2011


All of what Kat said. I remember skidding down Hiawatha Avenue in the iron slush on the way to being delivered to elementary school, sliding around on the motor cover on our Ford van, listening to Jim Ed Poole score the Whippets from last night and Garrison leading it into the wonderful old recorded music he used to broadcast before he imagined he had a voice and his own taste.

Is the morning show recorded anywhere? I'd become a lifetime member of National Public Radio for a few CDs of the Morning Show in the mid-1970s.
posted by FLAG (BASTARD WATER.) (Acorus Adulterinus.) at 9:29 PM on October 31, 2011


And does anyone know where to hear that show's recording of Beulah Land?
posted by FLAG (BASTARD WATER.) (Acorus Adulterinus.) at 9:32 PM on October 31, 2011


Fuck dots. I'm going to eat some ketchup right now.
posted by hal_c_on at 9:33 PM on October 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


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posted by Not The Stig at 9:35 PM on October 31, 2011


. ) ) ) ) )
posted by Lutoslawski at 9:36 PM on October 31, 2011 [3 favorites]


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posted by roll truck roll at 9:44 PM on October 31, 2011


Oooh, boy.
My introduction to radio production came in 1974 in an internship at KSJN in St. Paul. I worked with Tom. Every morning I'd get up at 4:30 and drive downtown, find a place to park and drag my sorry, hung-over 19-year-old ass into the studio to be shown how audio magic was made. He taught me how to cue a record, how to mix a spot, how to run a tight board and how to deal with "talent."
He taught me to love radio.
About half-way through my tenure there a guy who'd quit (or had been fired, accounts varied) and moved to New York tucked his tail between his legs and came back.
Tom said: "Now we'll have fun again."
What was the prototypical drowsy NPR morning show became a whole new thing. We'd have to produce commercials, because Minnesota Public Radio didn't have commercials, and people expected commercials in the morning on the radio. The playlist had to change. Instead of letting a Vivaldi LP track all the way through we'd play a movement, then a spot for "Bertha's Kitty Boutique," then "Help Me Rhonda."
I was hooked.
I didn't see any future in it, of course. That kind of fun surely couldn't lead to any kind of career. And that Keillor guy and his "Prairie Home Entertainment" sure wasn't going to stick around St. Paul for long.
I moved on. I got my 1st Class ticket and got a job at a commercial station, which lead to working sound for a touring ballet company, which lead to marrying a ballerina, getting pregnant, and, thirty one years ago this month, moving to Madison Wisconsin to continue to work as a stage hand, go to school, and volunteer at a listener sponsored radio station.
The marriage is long dead, my day-to-day work has nothing to do with radio or show business, but I'm still radioactive. My closest and most enduring relationships have come through my involvement with radio, my most fulfilling creative moments have occurred thanks to radio, and working in that dying medium is still when I feel most alive.
Like one stroke of a canoe paddle at the right moment can alter the flow of a river, one person, at the right time, can change the course of a life.
Thanks, Tom.
posted by Floydd at 9:47 PM on October 31, 2011 [48 favorites]


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posted by dismas at 10:11 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by kmz at 10:21 PM on October 31, 2011


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(sound of a man playing taps by kind of singing into his hands)
posted by no mind at 10:29 PM on October 31, 2011 [4 favorites]


PHC remembers Tom Keith - This has links to the last broadcast of the Morning Show with Tom Keith.

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posted by ZeusHumms at 10:40 PM on October 31, 2011


Is the morning show recorded anywhere? I'd become a lifetime member of National Public Radio for a few CDs of the Morning Show in the mid-1970s.

Well, over on Minnesota Public Radio, there's an archive of roughly five years of shows from 2004 to 2008, but it's in rough shape. Many of the recordings are in Real Audio. The website presumably has been reorganized over the years; a sample search revealed broken links.

Honestly, we're lucky they saved more than the final show. Radio stations aren't often big on saving tapes.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:49 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by Arbac at 11:49 PM on October 31, 2011


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posted by From Bklyn at 11:58 PM on October 31, 2011


Sometime around 2002 or 2003, Keillor was telling a story on PHC about parents visiting their children at college. I assume Keith was doing the sound effects. It was one of those deals where Keillor would read a sentence or two, and Keith would provide the sounds. Always good fun.

I was laughing along in the car, when suddenly Keillor said (I swear to you I'm not making this up) "And then they pulled out the buttplug."

**Pop! Glug, glug, glug....** Keith added.

It's still one of the most baffling things I have ever heard on the radio.

MPR was a big part of my formative years. RIP.
posted by themanwho at 12:43 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


[sad wapiti noise]
posted by Wolfdog at 2:35 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


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posted by bwilms at 3:04 AM on November 1, 2011


Ah, shit, this makes me sad.
posted by OmieWise at 3:43 AM on November 1, 2011


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I'm glad I got to see PHC live this year.
posted by oneironaut at 3:54 AM on November 1, 2011


the sounds of silence
posted by Obscure Reference at 5:05 AM on November 1, 2011


I'm more convinced every day that my viewing of their live broadcast direct to movie theaters is as close as I'm ever going to come to seeing them since I don't seem to be near enough to any of their stops but this is a sad day for any and all truck that beep backing up, sodas being guzzled, geese flying over head, helicopters hovering, lions growling, windows breaking, doors slamming, and people falling off cliffs.

One day I hope to tell my grandkids about you Mr. Kieth and I'm sure I won't be able to do your talent justice but dammit I'll try.

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posted by RolandOfEld at 5:20 AM on November 1, 2011


As a kid, Tom Keith probably more than any one, made me want to become an entertainer.
posted by GameDesignerBen at 5:25 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by JanetLand at 5:25 AM on November 1, 2011


I always got to talk to him backstage at Prairie Home every time I come to a show and he was always so kind to me. The thing that always got me is that he had 12 different personas on the Morning Show. I was at the very last Morning Show Broadcast which was an amazing experience, and by the way, Dale Connelly is now blogging at daleconnelly.com so check that out if you miss him. Tom was a class act, and he never got fired for his views...go figure......
posted by wheelieman at 5:45 AM on November 1, 2011


It takes a lot for me to say "oh no" out loud at a obituary thread, and this is one of them. Mark me in the "RIP Jim Ed Poole" column; I reluctantly admit was actually well into adulthood before I realized he and PHC's Tom Keith were the same guy. I got to see the MPR Morning Show perform live at the Fargo Theatre back in 2002 (article with prominent photos of Keith), and took my daughter along. The Morning Show had always been part of our morning routine, and I was disappointed when it was no longer on the air, at least not with Dale Connelly and Jim Ed Poole. I had been an early adopter of the Morning Show, too, thanks to my NPR-loving uncle who brought over a tape he made that morning some day in the early 1980s, so we could hear Metamora's Little Potato. At some point I had started recording the Morning Show so that I could hear Dr. Science, which ran just slightly after the time I had to leave for school. I would then get home and rewind the morning's show in order to dub the new Dr. Science on to the end of my compilation tape. It always ran after the sports, so to get Dr. Science cued up, I had to listen for that line...

Mr. Sports, Mr. Action...Mr. Jim Ed Poole.
[pause]

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Too bad I don't know where any of those old tapes are; I probably recorded over them long, long ago. So, sad, we'll miss you Tom Keith.
posted by AzraelBrown at 5:48 AM on November 1, 2011 [1 favorite]


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posted by drezdn at 6:26 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by godshomemovies at 6:30 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by Gelatin at 6:32 AM on November 1, 2011


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And here are some scores: 5, 27, 32, ...
posted by Mental Wimp at 6:54 AM on November 1, 2011


Oh, dang. PHC can be cloyingly twee, but the bits with Tom Keith's sound effects were always worth listening to.

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posted by usonian at 7:07 AM on November 1, 2011


(What's the UTF-8 code for the watery sound of a single Grief Glyph dot made by popping a finger against my cheek?)

The stories-with-sound-effects segments, which always sounded to me like Keillor was trying to corner Keith into producing impossible noises, are probably my favorite part of PHC. That, and Pat Donohue.
posted by wenestvedt at 7:37 AM on November 1, 2011


skip to 38:49.

I listened to the crowd at the fitz shout "Mr Sports…" all day yesterday.




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posted by kjell at 9:01 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by Halloween Jack at 9:09 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by antonymous at 10:23 AM on November 1, 2011


He brought me many many smiles
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posted by ahimsakid at 11:51 AM on November 1, 2011


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posted by 4ster at 1:30 PM on November 1, 2011


In addition to his wonderful sound effects, I'll always remember Tom Kieth for his incredible faux-French patter as Maurice, the Maitre 'd, in PHC's "Cafe Boeuf" episodes.

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posted by exphysicist345 at 1:51 PM on November 1, 2011


Way too young. He sounds like a terrific guy (pun intended, of course).
posted by theora55 at 2:47 PM on November 1, 2011


And now the New York Times has printed an obituary.
posted by exphysicist345 at 9:03 AM on November 2, 2011


Fred Newman has taken over more and more of the 'sound-effects' duties on APHC over the years, but I still remember when I first heard the show as a kid and thinking it was magic.
posted by pupdog at 11:37 AM on November 2, 2011


For those in the area, there's a show in Tom Keith's honor on November 12. Tickets are free at the door with restrictions, and apparently this won't be broadcast live, but video excerpts will be broadcast later.

Separately, there's a stream, Remembering Prairie Home Companion's Tom Keith, with friends and cast from PHC and The Morning Show.
posted by ZeusHumms at 10:58 PM on November 8, 2011




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