Minnesota Broadcasting Hall of Fame
He didn't sing or play guitar, but no one did more to promote
country music in the Upper Midwest than popular radio and
television personality David Stone.
Born in Savannah, Georgia, he worked in machine shops and
later in theater management before beginning his radio career
at WLAC Nashville, Tennessee. He later joined the announcing
staff at WSM Nashville, and in 1928 became co-producer and
announcer of The Grand Ole Opry. In 1940 he
met with Stanley E. Hubbard of KSTP Minneapolis/Saint Paul,
who hired him to create, produce, and host a new country
music and comedy show for KSTP. The Sunset Valley
Barn Dance was a huge success, playing to packed houses
at auditoriums and county fairs throughout the region, and
reaching millions of radio listeners. The show launched
the careers of many of the area's greatest country music
performers, and a number of successful spin-off shows, including Sunrise Roundup, Main Street, and Hymn Time. In 1948, he brought the Barn Dance to KSTP TV, and also hosted the noontime program, County
Road 5. He stayed on as Farm Director for KSTP until
he retired in 1986.
David Stone passed away August 31, 1995 at the age of 93.