Omar ('Sagebrush Sam') Blondahl. Folksinger, guitarist, born Wynyard, east of Saskatoon, of Icelandic parents, 6 Feb 1923, died St. John, NL, 11 Dec 1993. He studied piano and violin in his youth, and voice later in Winnipeg. Taking the name 'Sagebrush Sam' ca 1944, he sang country music on radio throughout western Canada until 1951, then worked as a folksinger 1951-3 in Hollywood, Cal. He lived 1955-64 in St John's, Nfld, where he developed a repertoire of island folk songs, some he collected himself. Adopting a Newfoundland accent and employing a simple vocal and guitar style, Blondahl performed locally and, in broadcasts from Halifax and Toronto, on national radio and TV, popularizing Newfoundland songs throughout Canada. Under his own name and as 'Sagebrush Sam' he made several LPs of Newfoundland material during this period (those for Rodeo, Arc, and Melbourne are listed in Michael Taft's A Regional Discography of Newfoundland and Labrador 1904-1972, St John's 1975). He also edited Newfoundlanders Sing!: A Collection of Favorite Newfoundland Folk Songs (St. John's 1964). Blondahl subsequently lived in the Arctic and in 1979 settled in Vancouver.