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Encyclopedia Dubuque


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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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KLUSEMAN, Ralph. (Brainerd, MN-- ). Kluseman attended WAHLERT CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL and studied at the University of Iowa. (1) In 2017 he was recognized for his role in founding ROCK 'N' ROLL REWIND and succeeded John Senn as president of the Iowa Rock ’n’ Roll Music Association, an organization he founded in 1997.

The mission of the Iowa Rock ’n’ Roll Music Association was to preserve the legacy of rock ’n’ roll music in Iowa by honoring achievements, educating youth, and inspiring artists. Senn continued to serve as CEO and “chairman emeritus.” Kluseman continued to work in Dubuque as a business counselor for the America’s Small Business Development Center in northeast Iowa working with entrepreneurs and existing businesses in Dubuque County, Delaware County, Clayton County and part of Allamakee County. (2)

Kluseman was a performing entertainer since seventh grade. In 2017 he did solo, duo, and had a Beatles tribute band. (3) According to his website, he performed the hits of the such performers as the Beatles, America, CSN&Y, Neil Young, James Taylor, Paul Simon, Garth Brooks, Jim Croce, Kenny Loggins, Cat Stevens, Johnny Cash, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney. (4)

As the new president of the music association, Kluseman planned to help continue sustainable operations and membership growth. He supported events like the annual “Battle of the Bands” during Hall of Fame weekend and more live performance opportunities for young artists, studio recording sessions for aspiring musicians and scholarship opportunities. (5)

On January 27, 2022 it was announced that Kluseman would be named to the 2022 Rock 'n Roll Music Association Hall of Fame in the individual category. With more than fifty years of performing locally, he had become well-known for his Beatles tributes and his outreach efforts focused on young musicians. (6)





1. Ralph Kluseman. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/ralph.kluseman

2. Gloss, Megan. "Longtime Dubuque Musician to Lead Iowa Rock 'n' Roll Association," Telegraph Herald, September 19, 2017, p. 10A

3. Ibid.

4. Ralph Kluseman. Online: http://www.ralphkluseman.com/about

5. Gloss

6. "Dubuque Music Veteran to be Inducted into Iowa Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame," Telegraph Herald, January 27, 2022, p. 6A