The new video for "Pecatonica Mud" is out!  Go to menu-videos to watch.  Five years in the making we're really proud of how this came out.  I also recently did interviews on three consecutive days at local Madison radio station WMVO 98.7.  You can listen here:  menu-albums.   Going all the way back to the beginning in 1965 to now, we covered a lot. And be sure to check out Doug Moe's terrific article on the new CD: "Pecatonica Mud".  There are many sites to purchase the new album from but we get more money if you order directly from us (check or cash). $17 will get you the full "Pecatonica Mud" CD delivered to you with our thanks. Richard Wiegel 518 W. Lakeside St. #2, Madison, WI 53715 Or pay with: BANDCAMP THE MIDWESTERNERS: BANDCAMP RICHARD WIEGEL: FACEBOOK: ITUNES RICHARD WIEGEL: ITUNES THE MIDWESTERNERS: YOUTUBE: SPOTIFY:

Upcoming Dates

Aug 24 2024
Lakeside St. Coffee House
madison, Wisconsin

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Latest News

Robert Schmidtke Rediscovered

Oct 16 2023

Contact: Richard Wiegel, 608-574-2241,
Or:  Jim Wildeman, 608-873-1072,

Robert Schmidtke Rediscovered

Madison Wisconsin, October 6th, 2023 —     From the years 1967 to 1977, guitarist Robert “Bob” Schmidtke was at the pinnacle of the rock and blues scene in Madison, Wisconsin.  He first left his mark in Mendelbaum, a quintessential local blues band who I saw at the Rendezvous Room at UW Platteville in 1967 where we both attended.  (Part of our collection includes the only know recording of this band from 1967.)   In the late 60’s, Mendelbaum (now without Bob) moved to San Francisco and two players, Chris Michie RIP (Lamb, The Pointer Sisters), and Keith Knudsen RIP (The Doobie Brothers) stayed and had successful careers.  Bob stayed in Madison and during that time helped form local rock/political band The Tayles, then went onto Clicker and The Beans (both bands I performed in with Bob) before moving to Eugene Oregon in the late 70’s, where he played in a band called Crosstown Flyers that included Madisonians Rick Markstrom and Steve Ibach.    
    He moved back around 1980 and ventured onto a new course, playing the guitar-like 10-string Chapman Stick and synthesizer.  From 1980 to 1984 Bob performed and wrote many interesting pieces on these instruments, but nothing was ever released.  Then in late 1984 Bob’s life ended at the young age of 38 due to congenital heart disease.  
    35 or so years later, I put out an unreleased 1975 album by The Beans, and enlisted Jim Wildeman to do the artwork.  Later on, perusing an article that Tom Kinney had written for Isthmus in 1985 about Bob, I learned of other works that were never released.  So I again enlisted Jim to help put out “Dividing Ridge”, a 40 minute piece contemplating the Native American effigy mounds in Madison, that luckily Tom had a live recording of.  Meanwhile, Bob’s long-time partner Susan Davies, saw some of this material on YouTube and contacted us with 10 more cassettes and a reel to reel tape of Bob’s music, and a small project turned into a behemoth.  Most of the tapes have been digitized and made into videos by Jim and myself, and we created a Youtube Channel dedicated to these rediscovered works, and they are now available at:

Robert Schmidtke Rediscovered

    More of Bob’s pieces are still to come, including “Five Lakes”, Bob’s musings on the lakes in the Madison area, and part 2 of Mendelbaum Live 1967.  Very few musicians travel the landscape from blues to avant-garde, but Bob did, and now his contribution to Madison’s rich history of music will be preserved and can be enjoyed by all.  

For more information contact: Richard Wiegel, 608-574-2241,
Or:  Jim Wildeman, 608-873-1072,

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Three interviews over three days February 8, 9 & 10 conducted by Joe Martin (Lefty Joe) on low power station WVMO in Monona, WI. (For a deeper analysis of the 3 shows and the songs played, go to menu, then click news.) We go back all the way to the beginning with The KnightKrawlers in 1965, touch on the early bands The Bowery Boys and Clicker, and finish up with the latest Midwesterner's release Pecatonica Mud. The first song plays all three parts, and is available for download for free. The next three songs divide up into Parts 1,2 and 3.