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November 20, 2007 | 3 Comments

Mr. Keillor,
Have you ever thought about putting together a CD of your duets with Kate Mackenzie? I always thought they were the best. You sound good together. Do you know if she is still performing anywhere?

Bob G.

Kate was lovely to sing with. Her voice is so pure with a sweet ache in it and she made everything she sang sound original. Before she went west, she lived in a log cabin in Wisconsin and that was a good place to sing. Robin and Linda Williams came out there once and we rehearsed a bunch of Chuckwagon Gang numbers that we never did record but we didn't mind — it was all fun to do.Good times. I sat down to dinner with Laurie Lewis and her band after the show Saturday night and we started singing the Hazel Dickens song, "Won't You Come And Sing For Me" and it reminded me of the old Hopeful Gospel Quartet that Kate and the Williamses and I started twenty years or so ago. I believe there is a Kate duet on the "Duets" CD that Prairie Home released a year or so ago. I doubt we'll put together a CD. I'm not a recording artist. The studio is a form of torture for me. No patience, I guess. But I do wish that, before I get old and quavery, Kate would come back and sing on the show. That would be a great gift. I don't expect she will — she took a step away from performing and she liked the life she found outside it and I admire that kind of independence. There's nothing compulsive about performing: it's a choice we make.


Always, always love to hear any news of Kate. Miss her sweet voice, and Sheila the Christian Jungle Girl bits, and am glad to hear she is happy in her life away from performing. Still miss her though.

Count me among those who miss Kate. She had the most pleasant female singing voice I think I ever heard. Wish she would continue recording.

We attended a Hopeful Gospel performance on a Labor Day weekend in Columbus, OH at the Columbus Zoo. It was almost three hours long and folks were on blankets on the grass and it was a perfect show. It would be nice to hear the group again live, we still listen to you all on CD's. You are a true American art treasure; and that is from a conservative Republican.

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