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Joe Kelly
WLS National Barn Dance
WLS Chicago, IL

About the Disc Jockey / Emcee

Joe was heard at times '...at 5 o'clock in the morning, at midnight Saturday night, and almost any hour in between.'

Children of the day remember him as "Jolly Joe" and he got a lot of fan mail from them telling him they enjoyed his singing of "Tie a Little String Around Your Finger So You'll Remember Me".

He played the piano, 'not too well and not too often' and sang in a 'manner never successfully imitated'.

One of his daily shows for the kids was called "Pet Pals". He was also the quizmaster on the WLS/NBC program called "Quiz Kids". They said when he started doing that show, he would get calls from fans asking him the very questions we guess he would stump them with on the show.

With the Westereners he is Rodeo Joe and it was he who began calling the accordion a "pleated piano" or a "syncopated chest protector".

Timeline / Trivia Notes

  • Married; son's name was Joe, Jr.
  • At 12, was a boy soprano with Neill O'Brien's famous minstrels

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