Former CBC announcer, professional Bing Crosby-sound-alike and manager of radio stations in the Northwest Territories and Yukon, Sheldon O'Connell has prepared the definitive biography of New Westminster-raised Mandrake the Magician [See below].

O'Connell was born in Brantford, Ontario on August 23, 1923. As a young singer he was hired by Pocket Songs Karaoke of New York to record two albums as a demo track singer imitating Crosby. O'Connell spent much of his working life employed by CBC as an announcer and station manager. While working for CBC in Montreal, O'Connell gained a B.A. from the Thomas More Institute for Adult Education, then acquired an M.A. in Educational Technology from Concordia University. His thesis concerned the impact of television on the Inuit, leading to his address to the Learned Societies Conference. An Explorations grant enabled him to expand his knowledge of the Inuit for an attempt to write a situation comedy about the Inuit. Upon his retirement he wrote his biography of B.C. native son Leon Mandrake who became a world famous magician. His biography entitled Hollywood Lip Prints recalls the life and times of Canadian-born Clay Campbell who became successful as a make-up artist for Hollywood studios. O'Connell's biography of Dick Todd profiles a Canadian pop star of yesteryear. O'Connell came to live in British Columbia in the late 1980s.

Author of:

Mandrake Incomparable (Calgary: Hades, 1998) $27.50 1-894069-00-5
Hollywood Lip Prints (Ironwood Press, 1989)
Dick Todd: King of the Jukebox (Self-published, 1987)
Bing: A Voice for all Seasons (Ireland, Kerryman Publishers, 1984)

[BCBW 2006] "Music"