Christine Dean

Music Director, Webmaster, Interim Station Manager

Christine started her radio career at age 17 in her hometown of Sauk Centre, Minnesota. She first came to KUMD as a student news intern and announcer in 1987, then spent many years working in commercial radio in Duluth before returning to the station in 2000. In 2008 she became the Music Director and is the producer of Live from Studio A, KUMD’s live performance and interview program. One of her favorite things about her job is the opportunity to share music from the Twin Ports’ many talented local artists. In her spare time she takes full of advantage of Duluth’s outdoors opportunities.

Credit Photo by Erin Welch

Ways to Connect

Woman in a wheelchair playing fiddle
John Heino for KUMD

The past two years have been a whirlwind for this Duluth native. After winning the NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert Contest in 2016, she's toured nationally and internationally, performed with a variety of artists including The Decemberists, and given talks about disability, music, and finding inner freedom. She recently released Learning How to Stay, her first album backed by a full band. She had a release show for the album on November 17 at Sacred Heart Music Center in Duluth, and she joined us in the studio the following week, on November 21.

Zenith City Groove collective

Todd Garland, Jake Jonker, Keith Bower, and Nick Glass have been laying down jazz grooves in the Twin Ports for the past year. Garland found his way to Duluth after time spent in the Atlanta and Chicago music scenes. The group mixes covers of modern groove tunes from artists like John Scofield and Charlie Hunter with unconventional versions of pop and rock tunes. They celebrated their one year anniversary with a show at Beaner's Central on November 16. We got a preview when they joined us in the studio on November 12.

Brothers Burn Mountain
John Heino for KUMD

Brothers Ryan and Jesse Dermody make up this duo, who've been playing music together for nearly two decades. Their expansive, blues-and-folk-influenced rock belies the simplicity of their drums and guitar setup. On their latest album, Blue Spruce, they flesh out their sound with help from special guests including Colleen Myhre on backing vocals and Trampled by Turtles' Ryan Young on fiddle. The disc was recorded at their own off-the-grid studio in the woods of Northern Minnesota. We found out more and heard tunes from the album when they joined us in the studio on November 9.

Gary Farmer is an actor whose career has spanned over three decades and 100 appearances on TV and in film, including the movies Smoke Signals and Jim Jarmusch's Dead Man. He's also a musician and a pioneer in Native media in both print and as a founder of Canada's Aboriginal Voices Radio Network. The native of the Six Nations Reserve in Ontario stopped by our studios on November 5, 2018, while in Duluth to appear at a 20th Anniversary showing of Smoke Signals.

Static Panic

This Minneapolis trio released its debut EP, Chrome, this year. Their soulful synth-pop grooves recently landed them on the City Pages annual "Picked to Click" list. They joined us in the studio on November 8 and gave us a preview of their show happening the same night at the Red Herring Lounge in Duluth.

Static Panic on Soundcloud

Five people standing together in front of a wall of CDs
Christine Dean for KUMD

This Twin Cities performer and composer joined us in the studio on  October 22 on the first-day of her week-long residency in Duluth that culminates in a show with Eric Mayson at Sacred Heart Music Center on October 26. Their project, Champagne Confetti, has been described as "Blurring the lines between ambient neo-minimalism, chamber music, and electro-R&B..."

Aby Wolf on Facebook

Aby Wolf

John Mark Nelson
Mike Mayou for KUMD

This St. Paul-based indie folk singer/songwriter is working on a new project set for release in 2019. He joined us in the studio on October 5 for a preview of his appearance the same night at Prøve Collective in Duluth.

John Mark Nelson

Prøve Collective

Live from Studio A on KUMD is made possible by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund

Cascade Crescendo

This Portland, Oregon-based band plays jam influenced bluegrass and features former Duluthian and Tin Can Gin member Harrison Olk. The band is preparing to release its second album, Chasing the Sun; they shared more about that project and played live when they joined us in the studio on September 28th. They performed later the same night at The Red Herring Lounge in Duluth.

Cascade Crescendo

Red Herring Lounge

Red Tail Ring at KUMD

This Michigan duo features Laurel Premo and Michael Beauchamp, whose close harmonies backed by spare acoustic instrumentation and blend of traditional tunes and original compositions create a distinctive folk sound. The pair, who play banjo, guitar, and fiddle, recently released their fourth studio album, Fall Away Blues. They joined us on September 27 and gave us a preview of their show at Amazing Grace Bakery in Duluth that same evening.

Red Tail Ring

Man in a hat with his arm around a woman

Fred Eaglesmith has been writing and performing for nearly 40 years. The Ontario native's songs are engaging narratives that reflect his rural upbringing, his time spent hopping trains, his observations of ordinary folks, and his love for the spirit of '60s and '70s rock and roll. Although Eaglesmith has intentionally avoided the mainstream in his performing career, his songs have been covered by everyone from Toby Keith to Kasey Chambers, and he's traveled the world playing for his dedicated fans.

Woman from the shoulders up with her hands under her chin

When the news of Aretha Franklin's death at the age of 76 was announced on August 16, 2018, KUMD's Chris Harwood posted on Facebook, "I am absolutely devastated. Losing Sharon Jones last year was like losing a music sister. Losing Aretha Franklin to me is like losing my music mother."


This acoustic singer/songwriter is back in her native Northern Minnesota after returning from 2 years in Northern Ireland. She released her debut album in 2016 and has a second in the works. We welcomed Nickolay to our studios on August 17, 2018.

Maria Nickolay

Man seated holding a guitar with another man standing behind him holding a guitar
Christine Dean for KUMD

This local entertainer is known for his charismatic performances covering everyone from Elvis to the Rat Pack to the Everly Brothers. He's now channeled those influences into his own compositions for his first album, Out of the Blue, which he'll release on Sunday, August 19 at Clyde Iron in Duluth. We found out more about the album, why it was so long in the making, and heard some tunes when Eckart joined us in the studio with guitarist Jimi Cooper on August 16, 2018.

Todd Eckart

Man standing in front of shelves full of CDs
Adam Reinhardt for KUMD

Max Mileski is a local audio engineer, producer, and musician who is known more for his work on others' projects than on his own.


This male/female folk-pop group recently released its second full-length album, From the Light. The upstate New York act dropped by our studios on July 30, 2018 to share some tunes and talk about the new album and their transition from a duo into a four-piece.

The Sea the Sea