The Humble Farmer with Robert Karl Skoglund
Every Monday 7AM - 8AM Eastern Time - HD2
How can a humble old Maine musician scratch together a comprehensive history of his life when the only purpose of the blurb is to drop names and boast of how many famous people he has met or played with --- and he has only one page?
He can’t. So right out of the chute, if you will remember that this is only a synopsis, we will admit that humble has shaken hands with President Reagan in the White House and posed for Andy Wyeth.
One of humble’s students created the character Woody for a movie called Toy Story and is a VP at something called Pixar. Another of humble’s students ended up in the Maine State Prison. Had humble been receiving merit pay, he would have received an Oscar while serving jail time.
As a humorous after-dinner speaker humble has appeared on programs with George H. W. Bush, Dr. Demento and all degrees of the illuminati in between.
Humble has played jazz concerts from Fresno to Bar Harbor and has told funny Maine stories to hundreds of audiences between Nijmegen and Anaheim.
He dislikes the word “jazz.” If humble doesn’t know the changes to a tune, you won’t hear it on his show.
The self-deprecating farmer appeared in a Boston Herald cover story that called him “New England’s Answer to Garrison Keillor.” A back-page story in the Christian Science Monitor was not so kind, calling him, “Maine’s Answer to Garrison Keillor.” humble has been called many other things, but editors refused to print them.
As an NDEA Fellow in Linguistics at the University of Rochester, humble got to play jazz with many great musicians --- only because at the time they were Eastman students who would play a gig with anyone for the $30 humble paid them.
Obviously none of the above has anything to do with humble’s present attempt to grind out a weekly radio program that purports to pander to the intelligentsia.
But a person’s background is an indication of why he says and acts the way he does, so if you don’t want to bother to Google The humble Farmer for a more comprehensive picture, please read on.
Robert Karl Skoglund lives a few hundred feet from where he was born on the coast of Maine. Seventy years ago, as a boy, he was related to most of his neighbors who all had the same ancestors.
When asked how he felt about people from “away” moving into the neighborhood, he said, “Well, although the Tolman family didn’t get here until 1757, I still go out of my way to make them feel welcome.”
He served two years in the Coast Guard, flunked out of The Crane Department of Music as a clarinet major, lived in Sweden long enough to learn to speak Swedish as well as Sal Nistico [got one more in], got an undergrad degree from Gorham Teachers College, did the course work for an MA in English lit at the University of Maine, taught classes in behavior modification to teachers, studied languages and linguistics in Rochester, NY, taught sixth grade, mowed bushes and dug gardens for his neighbors with a Ford tractor and gradually morphed into a newspaper columnist, Maine Public Radio personality, and humorous after-dinner speaker.
Although humble worked for five college degrees, he only has two --- which is pretty good for a man who can’t seem to finish anything.
As the old dubber imperceptibly slides into senility, his hobby is reading Agatha Christie in six or so languages. Although he can no longer read Beowulf in the original, he reads detective novels in Dutch every day--- which might be the next best thing.
Over 67 percent of humble’s wives were from Connecticut. One wife wrote an article on the president of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association and ran off with him. For the past 25 or so years humble has been happily married to Marsha, The Almost Perfect Woman, who has two children and three granddaughters. Marsha once worked for Time in Amsterdam and has studied in Chile. These things are important to humble, who admires your advanced degrees and great mind.
The humble farmer is an honorary member of the Maine Blackfly Breeders Association.
On this show you will hear soloists who don’t necessarily play a lot of notes but do have something interesting or clever to say. We make an effort to avoid musicians with only fast fingers to show for themselves.
The televised version of this show, featuring hours of footage from the humble farm in St. George, Maine, turn up when you Google: "Robert Karl Skoglund YouTube."
The humble farmer regrets that he could never afford to have children. He loves animals and for the past 45 years has never raised a pet that he didn’t eat.