Stored Rock: Local Boy Turns Legend

Although influenced by timeless musicians, the music of Robert Conner has deep roots in Sigourney. This is where he learned to play, where he started his first bands, and where he continues to bring gifted musicians together. Born in Missouri, his father was originally from Sigourney and the family relocated here when Bob was in 4th or 5th grade. Other than a few years living in Colorado, Conner has called Sigourney ‘home,’ and treasures the memories of his musical path, which began on the Sigourney square with a little red wagon.

“Our first live performance we pulled a wagon around the square. It was Larry Strickler, Dennis Winegarden, Dave Stoller, and I. Dennis made a little PA that fit in a little red wagon, and the group went around the square and asked to plug in at each store for a $5.00 performance. Since it was the town’s first Crazy Days, most places agreed and we made our first real money,” Conner said.

The wagon tradition continued a few years later on a hay wagon set up as stage in front of what is now the News Review for town dances. These early musical roots remain strong in Conner, so it was particularly poetic for him to play once again on the square most recently for the town’s 175th celebration.

Faces of fellas from the wagon days show up in pictures on the wall in Conner’s music room. Many of them remain friends and their musical journey together led some of them to the Iowa Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. According to iowarocknroll.com, this road to the Hall of Fame began in Oskaloosa in 1966.

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