The BAR-D Roundup: Volume Ten

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The BAR-D Roundup: Volume Ten (2016) is a double CD compilation of vintage and contemporary recordings of some of the best cowboy poetry. Find more complete information for all ten volumes at CowboyPoetry.com.

Cowboy poetry records the heartbeat of the working West, a tradition—stories of cowboys, ranchers, and Western writers—that spans three centuries. Its enduring popularity is celebrated at today’s cowboy poetry gatherings and at CowboyPoetry.com, a program of the non-profit Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry.

This tenth and final edition of The BAR-D Roundup collects the most popular classic and contemporary poetry tracks from the past volumes, including those from early volumes that are long out of print. You’ll find the authentic voices of National Endowment for the Arts Heritage Fellows (Buck Ramsey, Wallace McRae, Joel Nelson); of past Texas State Poet Laureate Red Steagall; of classic poets in their own voices (Gail I. Gardner, Robert Service, Charles Badger Clark, Jr.); and of many other men and women, respected poets and reciters who are cowboys, ranchers, and Western writers.

The Center’s Cowboy Poetry Week celebration—recognized by unanimous U.S. Senate resolution—is held each April during National Poetry Month. Each year, The BAR-D Roundup CD and the celebration’s poster (by respected cowboy and artist Gary Morton in 2016) are offered to libraries in the Center’s Rural Library Program. The outreach program is a part of the Center’s commitment to serve rural communities and to preserve and promote our Western heritage.

The CD is dedicated to all those who proudly carry on the ranching tradition.

DISC 1

LOOKING BACK (Bruce Kiskaddon, 1878-1950) from “Looking Backward” Randy Rieman … 0:33
from Where the Ponies Come to Drink (2000); cowboypoetry.com/randyrieman.htm V6

WAITIN’ ON THE DRIVE Larry McWhorter (1957-2003) … 5:49
from The Poetry of Larry McWhorter (2010); jeanprescott.com V5

THE MEDICINE KEEPERS J.B. Allen (1938-2005) …. 1:30
from The Medicine Keepers (1998); cowboypoetry.com/jballen.htm V6

A COWBOYIN’ DAY Gary McMahan … 6:42
from A Cowboyin’ Day (1992); singingcowboy.com  V7

COWBOY COUNT YER BLESSINGS (Larry McWhorter, 1947-2003) Larry McWhorter and Waddie Mitchell … 3:15
from The Poetry of Larry McWhorter (2010); Prescott Music, PO Box 194, Ovalo, TX 79541, jeanprescott.comwaddiemitchell.com V6

COWBOY POETRY IN MOTION Paul Bliss … 2:53
from Pure Bliss (2013); cowboypoetry.com/paulbliss.htm V9

THE BREAKER IN THE PEN Joel Nelson … 5:37
from The Breaker in the Pen (2000); cowboypoetry.com/joelnelson.htm V2

SADDLIN’ UP TIME (Andy Wilkinson) Jerry A. Brooks … 2:43
from Shoulder to Shoulder (2010);  cowboypoetry.com/brooksie.htm V7

THE HORSE TRADE Sunny Hancock (1931-2003) … 4:54
from Sunny (2005); cowboypoetry.com/sunnyhancock.htm V2

HOSSES vs. HORSES (S. Omar Barker, 1894-1985) Paul Zarzyski … 2:04
from Spurrin’ the Words (2005); montana.edu; paulzarzyski.com V2

MY FATHER’S HORSES DW Groethe … 1:56
courtesy of the Western Folklife Center, recorded at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering (2007), westernfolklife.org;cowboypoetry.com/dwgroethe.htm

WHERE THE PONIES COME TO DRINK (Henry Herbert Knibbs, 1874-1945) Randy Rieman … 2:38
from Where the Ponies Come to Drink (2000); cowboypoetry.com/randyrieman.htm V3

FORGOTTEN (Bruce Kiskaddon, 1878-1950) Jesse Smith … 1:29
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2011); V6

OF HORSES AND MEN Jay Snider … 1:32
from Of Horses and Men (2006); jaysnider.net V4

A COWBOY SEASON Jo Lynne Kirkwood … 5:20
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2007); jokirkwood.com V2

THE CONVERSATION Ken Cook … 2:14
from Cowboys Are Like That (2009); kencookcowboypoet.com V4

BORN TO THIS LAND Red Steagall … 2:58
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2006); redsteagall.com V1

DAD WAS LIKE A COLT Virginia Bennett … 0:31
from Canyon of the Forgotten (1998); cowboypoetry.com/vibennett.htm V1

HORSESHOES AND HEAVEN Kent Rollins … 2:55
from Kent Rollins: Live in Branson (2006); kentrollins.com V2

THE OLD CROCKETT SPURS Andy Nelson … 1:02
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2008); cowpokepoet.com V3

THE GOOD OLD COWBOY DAYS (Luther A. Lawhon 1861-1922) Jay Snider … 4:25
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2008); jaysnider.net V3

TO BE A TOP HAND Georgie Sicking … 1:18
from To Be a Top Hand (2007); cowboypoetry.com/sicking.htm V3

HEADIN’ OUT Diane Tribitt … 1:32
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2010); cowboypoetry.com/dianetribitt.htm V5

ADVICE Deanna Dickinson McCall … 1:00
from Hot Iron (2005); deannadickinsonmccall.com V3

BONES Doris Daley … 0:56
from Good for What Ails You (2006); dorisdaley.com V3

PAYIN’ ATTENTION Carole Jarvis … 2:29
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2012); cowboypoetry.com/carolejarvis.htm V7

HE TALKED ABOUT MONTANA Elizabeth Ebert … 3:00
from Live from Thunderhawk (2002); cowboypoetry.com/elizabethebert.htm  V2

MICHAEL BIA Chris Isaacs … 1:30
from Most Requested Poems (2001); chrisisaacs.com  V5

DEATH OF THE LAST COWHAND Linda M. Hasselstrom … 2:52
from Bitter Creek Junction (2000); windbreakhouse.com V6

DISC TWO

THE MEN WHO RIDE NO MORE Joel Nelson … 3:26
from The Breaker in the Pen (1999); cowboypoetry.com/joelnelson V4

FOUR LITTLE WORDS Jay Snider … 2:52
from Cowboyin’, Horses, and Friends (2000); jaysnider.net  V7

ALONE (Bruce Kiskaddon, 1878-1950) Trey Allen … 1:01
from Cowpoke (2002); trey-allen-amigos.com  V1

ANTHEM Buck Ramsey … 4:33
from Buck Ramsey’s Grass (2005); Texas Tech University Press, www.ttupress.org; www.cowboypoetry.com/buckramsey1.htm V1

I’D LIKE TO BE IN TEXAS (traditional) J.B. Allen (1938-2005) … 2:34
courtesy of the Western Folklife Center, recorded at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering (1993), westernfolklife.org;cowboypoetry.com/jballen.htm V4

WHEN THEY’VE FINISHED SHIPPING CATTLE IN THE FALL (Bruce Kiskaddon, 1878-1950) Randy Rieman … 5:07
from Old Favorites (2003); cowboypoetry.com/randyrieman.htm V2

THE SIERRY PETES (or, TYING KNOTS IN THE DEVIL’S TAIL) Gail I. Gardner (1892-1988) … 3:45
from a family recording (1986); cowboypoetry.com/gardner.htm V4

REINCARNATION Wallace McRae ….1:54
courtesy of the Western Folklife Center, recorded at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering (2012), westernfolklife.org;
cowboypoetry.com/mcrae.htm V7

YEP Rod Nichols (1942-2007) … 1:46
from Yep, A Little Bit More of Texas (2003); cowboypoetry.com/rn.htm  V1

COWBOY BANKER Pat Richardson (1935-2016) … 1:24
from B. Y. O. S. (Bring Your Own Sheep) (2002); cowboypoetry.com/patrichardson.htm V1

WHAT WOULD MARTHA DO? Yvonne Hollenbeck … 2:31
from Where the Buffalo Rhyme (2003); yvonnehollenbeck.com V1

COWBOY LAUNDRY Rodney Nelson … 3:20
from Where the Buffalo Rhyme (2003); cowboypoetry.com/rodneynelson.htm V4

YOO-HOO Jane Morton … 2:45
from Turning to Face the Wind (2004); cowboypoetry.com/janemorton.htm  V1

TOMBOY Dee Strickland Johnson (“Buckshot Dot”) … 2:32
from Cowman’s Wife (1996); buckshotdot.com V5

MAGGIE (Wallace McRae) Brigid Reedy … 0:21
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2014); brigidreedy.com V9

PST the III (DW Groethe) Linda Kirkpatrick … 1:51
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2014); lindakirkpatrick.net V9

SOME COWBOY BRAG TALK (traditional) Harry Jackson (1924-2011) …. 1:35
from The Cowboy: His Songs, Ballads, and Brag Talk, FW05723, courtesy of Smithsonian Folkways © 1959. Used by permission,folkways.si.edu; harryjacksonstudios.com V5

THE LEGEND OF BOASTFUL BILL (Charles Badger Clark, Jr. 1883-1957) Jerry A. Brooks … 3:44
recorded by Hal Cannon and Taki Telonidis (2009), courtesy of the Western Folklife Center, westernfolklife.org;cowboypoetry.com/brooksie.htm  V5

BIGFOOT Pat Richardson (1935-2016) … 3:14
from Pat Richardson Strikes Again (2007); cowboypoetry.com/patrichardson.htm V3

BILL’S IN TROUBLE (James Barton Adams 1843-1918) Hal Swift … 1:55
recorded for The BAR-D Roundup (2008); cowboypoetry.com/halswift.htm V3

THE CREMATION OF SAM McGEE Robert Service (1874-1958) … 9:27
from Robert Service in Person (2004), Norlynn Audio Visual Services, reason-for-hope.com V3

CATTLEMAN’S PRAYER (traditional) Dick Morton … 1:32
from Cowboy Classics (2006); cowboypoetry.com/dickmorton.htm  V4

A COWBOY’S PRAYER Charles Badger Clark, Jr. (1883-1957) … 1:36
from Dakota Voices (1956) courtesy of the Badger Clark Memorial Society; badgerclark.org  V5

HAIL AND FAREWELL (Delia Gist Gardner, 1900-1990) Gail Steiger … 2:11
from The Romance of Western Life (2007); gailsteigermusic.com V2

HOME ON THE RANGE (Brewster Higley, 1823-1911) James Richardson … 2:26
recorded by Ruby T. and John Avery Lomax (1939); courtesy of the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress,loc.gov/item/lomaxbib000482 V9

CENTER FOR WESTERN AND COWBOY POETRY RADIO PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT (PSA) … 0:30
by Baxter Black, top cowboy poet and philosopher (recorded 2009), www.baxterblack.com V4

CowboyPoetry.com includes most of these poems and more information about the poems and poets.

All rights are reserved by the artists and owners of the included tracks.

The BAR-D Roundup: Volume Nine is produced by the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry with generous  funding support from Laura and Edmund Wattis Littlefield, Jr., Margaret T. Morris Foundation, and sustaining donors.

Special thanks to Bette Ramsey; the estate of S. Omar Barker; Margaret Allen; Andrea McWhorter Waitley; Jean Prescott; the Gardner and Steiger families; Judith Nichols; Jeff Hancock; Steve Green and the Western Folklife Center; Todd Kesner and Montana 4-H Center; the late Jessie Sundstrom; Stuart Spani; Matthew Jackson; Smithsonian Folkways Recordings; Todd Harvey and the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress; Andy Wilkinson and Texas Tech University Press; Walter Workman; Sylvia and Joel Nelson; Totsie Slover; Jarle Kvale; Francie Ganje; Charley Engel, Waynetta Ausmus, Graham Lees; Alf Bilton; Chris Waddell; Jim Nelson; Andy Nelson, engineer and co-producer (with Margo Metegrano); and all of the poets, reciters, families, publishers, and organizations for poetry and permissions.

 

The BAR-D Roundup: Volume Ten (2016), a double CD, is available, postpaid, for a $25 donation.

Proceeds from The BAR-D Roundup support the Center. CowboyPoetry.com is a project of the Center.

You can order by mail using the form here or send $25 (check or money order in U.S. funds) per copy to:

CowboyPoetry.com
PO Box 1107
Lexington, VA 24450

Postage is included for the U.S. Add $10 US for Canada and other countries.

You can also pay by a secure, on-line credit card payment (a Paypal account is not required):

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CowboyPoetry.com is a project of the Center for Western and Cowboy Poetry, Inc. a non-profit, tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Act. Contributions are fully deductible for federal income tax purposes. The BAR-D Roundup fair market value is $15 and no amount of the $25 donation for its postpaid delivery is tax deductible as a charitable contribution.

Find special offers and more about all of the CDs here at CowboyPoetry.com.

MUD by Amy Hale Auker

 

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MUD
by Amy Hale Auker

Give me mud,
heavy black fragrant,
goldfish harbor
at the bottom of a trough.

Give me cows,
bawling cumbersome social,
daughters and sons and families of cows.

Give me light,
flickering non-electric intimate,
creating a circle of us.

Give me solitude
days of books and truth and pages
when the story is the thing.

Give me weather
wind and storms and bright hot
on unprotected skin.

Give me simple
and wet
and real
an abundance of time.

Keep your diamonds,
your malls,
your exhaust fumes,
your schedules,
your busy-ness,
your prescriptions,
your clean.

Give me mud,
heavy black fragrant,
goldfish harbor
at the bottom of a trough.

© 2011, Amy Hale Auker, used with permission
This poem may not be reposted without the author’s permission.

Amy Hale Auker describes herself in a biography at her web site, “I write and ride on a ranch in Arizona where I am having a love affair with rock, mountains, the piňon and juniper forest, and the weather.”

She is the author of three acclaimed books, two novels and an essay collection. Another essay collection, Ordinary Skin, is undergoing final editing.

Find much more about her at CowboyPoetry.com, at AmyHaleAuker.com, and on Facebook.

wobsae156 aarightfulplace ahastory156

 

National Day of the Cowboy: 2016 Cowboy Keepers

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The National Day of the Cowboy organization announces its 2016 Cowboy Keeper Awards:

We’re Inspired by Cowboy Keepers

Each year, with its Cowboy Keeper Award©, the National Day of the Cowboy nonprofit organization has the great privilege of recognizing individuals, organizations, and projects that make or have made a significant contribution to the preservation of pioneer heritage and the promotion of cowboy culture. In 2016, those who have inspired such recognition are Glenn Ohrlin, Donnalyn Quintana, Cotton and Karin Rosser, John Prather, Joseph “Jo” Mora, and the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center.

Glenn Ohrlin
Born in 1926, in Minnesota, Glenn Ohrlin heard cowboy songs on the radio and from friends and family as a boy. By age 5, he was singing himself and at 10, he learned to play guitar. He left home at 16 to work as a cowboy. He eventually lived in a stone house he built in Arkansas, where he also operated his own cattle ranch. A sold out auditorium for “The Legacy of Glenn Ohrlin,” tribute at the 32nd National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in 2016, was a moving testament to his extensive influence on cowboy culture. The late cowboy Glenn Ohrlin was revered by all who knew him as a man who lived at the heart of the cowboy tradition. He was known to be a genuine one-of-kind cowboy who shared his music with all. He was fondest of performing old time novelty tunes, but he had a deep appreciation for all types of songs and loved to be around young people to pass his knowledge and love for music along to them. His repertoire ranged from traditional ballads, poetry, bawdy songs, hobo ditties and Spanish tunes from the period 1875 to 1925, to country and western, and folk songs. Over his years of cowboying, riding in rodeos, and collecting cowboy music, Ohrlin wrote The Hell-Bound Train, published by the University of Illinois Press in 1973. It contained 100 of his favorite cowboy songs and poems, as well as the people and stories behind them. He released an album of the same name. He was named an NEA Heritage Fellow in 1985.

For two years, Ohrlin was host and performer with The Cowboy Tour, on which he traveled 30,000 miles sharing cowboy music. During that time, he worked with other western folklorists who organized the successful Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada. A remarkable man with an especially dry sense of humor, Ohrlin liked to say, “The crowd might like me or they might not, but I’ll get paid anyway.” He theorized that cowboys sing because of the isolated life they lead. His legacy from a long happy life of 88 years includes stories, songs, humor, and poetry, but most importantly it includes those who have been inspired by him to carry on the cowboy music and poetry tradition. Singer Randy Rieman summed up Ohrlin and his influence beautifully with this heartfelt compliment during the tribute show, “In the 31 years of the poetry gathering, we needed to see Glenn. You just didn’t want to miss one of Glenn’s shows.”

Donnalyn Quintana
Donnalyn Quintana established her nonprofit organization, “Western Wishes,” in 1994, out of a desire to make a difference in a child’s life by “celebrating the determination and courage of those facing adversity who love the western way of life.” She recognized there are kids who dream of being a sheriff, riding a reining horse, learning to rope a steer, ride in the rodeo or simply long to be a cowboy or cowgirl in some way. Twenty-two years later, Ms. Quintana’s program continues to grow and reward kids for their fighting spirit while also communicating the stories of their determination to get back in the saddle. The Western Wishes program puts inspiring kids in the spotlight, even if just for a moment, and encourages them to reach for the stars and see their dreams come true. She has worked tirelessly to enlist the help of celebrities such as Tuf Cooper, George Strait, Stran Smith, Taylor Swift and Reba McEntire, to light up a child’s life. Over the years, Donnalyn has worked to bring life to the western wishes of hundreds of young buckaroos with life changing illness or injury, whether mentally or physically challenged. Through her kindness, she has been touching lives and healing the hearts of young people facing potentially life-threatening adversities.

Ms. Quintana’s personal mission is to leave a legacy of goodwill the cowboy way. To that end, she reaches outside her arena as well, such as taking the time to attend the hearing at the Texas Legislature on behalf of the National Day of the Cowboy bill, where she invited her friend, rodeo legend Larry Mahan to testify to the hearing committee on our behalf. Her organization is also launching a College Rodeo Challenge, spearheaded by a college intern, to encourage other college rodeo teams to “pay it forward” by finding deserving kids, executing their wish and sharing their story. After helping to make more than 600 western wishes come true, Donnalyn still views her work as blessing for her, noting, “Every time I come away from granting a wish, my life is changed for the better. I feel that this was put into my heart for a reason.” A woman who radiates warmth and kindness, Donnalyn Quintana emphasizes that ultimately the aim is to use the Western Wishes stories to inspire other children battling similar adversities.

Cotton & Karin Rosser
Cotton Rosser says the seeds of showmanship were planted in his blood as a boy, by heroes like Will James, Hoppy, Gene, and Roy. Growing up in California, he was always on the lookout for opportunities to spend time with cowboys. Following high school, he attended Cal Poly, where he served as captain of the rodeo team. He competed in Madison Square Garden in New York in 1950. Rosser won the saddle bronc riding at the Reno Rodeo in 1950. His highlight was winning the all-around title at the 1951 Grand National Rodeo in San Francisco, but a ranch accident broke both of his legs, putting him out of rodeo competition and into business as a stock contractor and producer. To this day, he delights in new ways to entertain and wow the crowds, whether with Roman Chariot Races, Bull Poker or Bull Teeter-Totter! Cotton Rosser isn’t all about the pageantry, however. He sincerely cares about the integrity of rodeo. He takes great pains to ensure that the Flying U has the very best livestock. An aficionado of bucking horses and longhorn cattle, he attends to every detail himself. He is a legendary stock contractor and rodeo event producer who has supplied bulls to the PBR during its entire history. He was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in 1995. In 2009, he was inducted into the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum Rodeo Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

In 2014 the Reno Rodeo honored him with “Cotton Rosser Night.” It couldn’t go to a more deserving person,” said Bob Tallman, longtime voice of the Reno Rodeo. “In the past 50 years, Cotton’s changed the face of rodeo five times. He’s been so far ahead of the curve people have flown to his events just so they could steal from them and do the same things.” Speaking at California Polytechnic State University, where he had once served as rodeo team captain Rosser told the graduates, “The motto, ‘learn by doing,’ has worked for me all my life.” And, all his life Cotton Rosser has shared his knowledge and experience while inspiring generations of cowboys and entertaining millions of people.

Karin Allred Rosser
PRCA Gold Card Member, Karin Allred Rosser, has spent her life excelling in fields related to Western Heritage. Early in life she was introduced to livestock and horses, riding Shetland Ponies as a toddler and Quarter Horses as she grew. Summers were spent at flat tracks as a hot walker and pony girl, while winter afternoons involved chariot races in NM and UT, and appearances at State and World Championship meets. Her teenage years found her in the horse show arena where she excelled in Western and English Riding and served as first President of the Utah Jr. Quarter Horse Association. Her competitive spirit resulted in numerous awards from the Utah, Intermountain and American Quarter Horse Associations. Competing as a barrel racer and queen contestant in amateur rodeo turned Karin’s attention to the rodeo arena. At 19 she was crowned Ogden Pioneer Days Rodeo Queen, launching her into professional rodeo. Later that year, having earned the title Miss Rodeo Utah, she was 1St Runner-up to Miss Rodeo America. The MRA scholarship money helped pay for a Fashion Merchandising degree from Weber State University. During her year-long reign she participated in western apparel markets, celebrations, and radio and TV spots, representing professional rodeo.

Rodeo also introduced Karin to her husband of 38 years, Cotton Rosser, stock contractor for the Pioneer Days Rodeo and other PRCA rodeos. Karin and Cotton were married in 1978. They moved to the Flying U Ranch in Marysville, CA, which offered them more opportunities to promote Western heritage. Her education equipped her to manage “Cotton’s Cowboy Corral,” the western retail store Cotton and Karin own and operate in Marysville. She was also introduced to rodeo production and soon received her PRCA Timer Card and Secretary Card. Karin mastered music and spotlights at some of the largest indoor arenas in the West. During the nine years the Flying U presented the opening ceremonies at the National Finals Rodeo, Karin cued spotlights and music, washed horses, and helped with wardrobe and flag presentation practices. While Cotton occupies center stage, Karin works behind the scenes as a rodeo secretary or timer, greeting dignitaries, planning events, organizing tack trailers, saddling horses, and feeding livestock. Then, they drive down the road together to the next rodeo where she may do it all again. She is a member of the women’s group HANDS, which offers moral support and financial assistance to rodeo people in need. Karin is affiliated with the Cowboy Reunion group which raises money to benefit both the Pro Rodeo Hall of Champions and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. She is known to be a poised professional woman of character and compassion who has made a lasting impression as a wife, mother, businesswoman and friend. She is recognized as a woman of principle who works tirelessly to benefit family, rodeo, ranching, and Western heritage.

Karin and Cotton have hosted school children on ranch tours and supported FFA, 4H and High School Rodeo clubs and teams. Since 2005, the Flying U Rodeo Company has participated in California Ag Day at the Capitol, where Karin and Cotton distribute copies of the Pro Rodeo Sports News, PRCA rule books, animal welfare brochures, answer questions from legislators, media, and the general public and provide information about pro rodeo. Together and individually, Karin and Cotton Rosser exemplify the essential spirit of those who work to promote and preserve the best of our Western Heritage.

Joseph “Jo” Mora
Throughout his lifetime, Joseph “Jo” Jacinto Mora embraced the rich history of the American West. From the time he wrote and illustrated stories about cowboys and Indians as a young child, to his last written and illustrated book about the history of the Vaqueros at the end of his life, Mora depicted the western lifestyle through his varied artistic abilities and by living it himself. As an accomplished illustrator, painter, sculptor, printmaker, cartographer, cartoonist, photographer, and cowboy, Jo was able to express his deep love of western history through numerous channels of creativity. His knowledge of history came from travel by horse and wagon in the early 1900s as he explored California’s missions, Yosemite, the state’s ranches, and eventually the culture of the Hopi and Navajo in Arizona. His observations throughout this time found their way into his writings and his art. Mora’s vast body of work ranges from a California 49er on a half-dollar minted by the U.S. government in celebration of California’s Diamond Anniversary, to four majestic bronzes on display at Oklahoma’s Woolaroc Museum, featuring figures prominent in Oklahoma history and the 101 Ranch of George Miller. The Levi Strauss Company chose Mora’s artwork for an extensive advertising campaign.

It is no surprise that a person of Mora’s vast western legacy would be intertwined with other honored westerners. Upon seeing Jo’s art, Frederick Remington encouraged Jo by telling him, “Son, you’re doing fine. Just stay with it.” Author Zane Grey featured Jo’s drawings in his Western Magazine. Jo’s western drawings sit perfectly alongside the work of Ed Borein and Charlie Russell. The writing of Jo Mora continues to ring just as true sixty years later as the work of Will James and Frank Dobie. Mora himself crafted a 13-scene diorama depicting the life of Will Rogers (at the Will Rogers Memorial Museum in Claremore, OK), as well as one featuring the arrival of John Fremont at Sutter’s Fort in Sacramento, California.

He wrote and illustrated Trail Dust and Saddle Leather about the American cowboy and Californios about the Vaqueros; both continue to be well respected accounts of their subjects. He worked with his father to create the decorative elements on the Native Sons of the Golden West Building in San Francisco, depicting various aspects of California’s history. Mora created memorial sculptural work in honor of Bret Harte and the decorative elements on the Monterey County Courthouse in Salinas, California. His iconic work, “Sweetheart of the Rodeo” was featured on the 2011 National Day of the Cowboy commemorative poster. Mora was a member of the prestigious National Sculpture Society. He was a prolific creator and his incredible and varied works of art can be found in museums, libraries, private collections and public places all around the country.  Jo Mora is one of only eight persons included in each issue of Who’s Who in America since the publication’s inception. One of the rare artists able to make his living by his craft, Mora was a gifted artist, and an amazing person able to accomplish anything he set his mind to. While his list of accomplishments and accolades seems nearly endless, Jo Mora was the consummate husband and father who listed his family at the top of his life’s achievements.

John Prather
In this fast moving world where technology emphasizes forward strides, we sometimes lose touch with historical milestones that form the foundation on which we stand today. New Mexico rancher, John Prather, serves as one of those milestones. Although he died in 1965, Prather and his story still resonate as an example of the cowboy ethics and principles of a man willing to stand up for what he believed was right. Born in Van Zandt County, Texas, in 1874, nine year old John and his family were one of the pioneer families moving to the territory of New Mexico in 1883. John started breaking horses when he was 12, charging a dollar per year of the horse; thus a two year old colt cost $2.00 to break. He saved his money, eventually married, and with his bride, homesteaded on the unsettled grasslands of the Otero Mesa where they lived in a tent until they could get a home built. Working behind a team of mules pulling a fresno scraper, they constructed dirt tanks and made water where there was no water. During World Wars I and II John gained fame as the Mule King, having one of the largest Army mule breeding programs in the country. Afterwards he ran a successful cattle ranching business introducing the first Angus cattle to the area. John became widely known so it was not uncommon to see an interesting roster of people at the ranch looking to purchase from his renowned stock. Visitors and clients included Tom Mix, Gene Autry and Dizzy Dean. He enjoyed going into town to do the shopping and often would stop for someone on the road who seemed to be in a tough situation and ask if he could help. Some of the old timers in Alamogordo still tell of times as a young child when they remember John buying expectant mothers a basket of baby clothes or an older person a new set of dentures. Most recipients of his acts of kindness were strangers to him, but he always said there is no excuse not to help someone one when you can. Although always a gentleman John could push boundaries when needed. During war time he often had only lady cowhands working for him because he felt they could use the income and satisfaction of providing for their families while their men were away. The ladies with children were even invited to bring the youngsters to the ranch so he could teach them about life outdoors.

The Cold War turned the attention of the U.S. military to the southern part of New Mexico where expansion of the McGregor Missile Range was seen as a necessity in the race against the Soviets. Buyouts of ranchers with the threat of condemnation worked well in acquiring 99% of the land, with one exception…John Prather. Even though he was 82, Prather refused to be cowed or intimidated and stayed firm in his resolve to keep his ranch. Understanding the need to prime our military’s force he offered to lease it to the Army for $1.00 a year, indemnity free. His offer was rebuffed and legal proceedings were initiated. Negotiations continued for a year with John graciously meeting several generals and inviting them to his place to see the fine beef he was raising to feed the boys in uniform. He was civil, but resolute in his stand to preserve what he had built with years of sweat and tears. Eventually the threat of force was employed and sheriffs’ deputies were sent to arrest the old rancher. Again, John was gracious but firm, saying he understood their job and hoped they understood his. He would not be moved unless it was forcibly. Two days passed ending with three deputies driving back to town with an empty back seat. Newspaper coverage from Alaska to Germany lauded the old cowboy. The Today Show quipped that the Army might want to use John Prather to negotiate with the Soviets on their behalf. The writer, Edward Abbey, penned the book Fire on the Mountain based on John’s determination to keep his land. The book became a made-for-TV film, starring Buddy Ebsen and Ron Howard. Within the year, juke boxes across the country were spinning “The Ballad of John Prather,” by Calvin Boles. John threatened to live to be 100 but passed away at 91. He is buried there where he took a stand for what he felt was right. His ranch is now part of the McGregor Missile Range, but they didn’t take it until a month after his death. He continued to work his ranch until the day he died. He held no grudges and often invited passing soldiers to the house for brisket, beans, and a dip in the cool waters of the steel tank. He was a class act until the very end. John Prather proved by example that being a cowboy is about far more than working with livestock. It is also about strength of character, integrity and true grit.

Chisholm Trail Heritage Center
In the early 1990s a group of citizens from Duncan and southwest Oklahoma, and northern Texas, formed a partnership to increase the quality of life in their region, help educate people on the courage, struggles and successes of settlement in the area, and provide an information stop on the route of present day explorers of the historic Chisholm Trail. From the beginning, the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center in Duncan, Oklahoma, hosted visitors with the highest quality educators and exhibits to celebrate the men and women who rode the Trail, settled the area, or were indigenous peoples forced to alter their lifestyles due to the encroachment of travelers and settlers. The Center’s mission is, “To celebrate and perpetuate the history, art and culture of the Chisholm Trail, the American Cowboy and the American West.” As a nonprofit, world class museum inside and out, the Center enriches its community as a renowned destination that brings alive the heritage of the American West, inspiring and educating present and future generations.

The museum serves the United States and International communities as well. The staff estimates fully ¼ of visitors are international. Past, present and future museum exhibits are as diverse as those who traveled the trail, including The Long Ride Home – The African American (cowboy) Experience in America” a photographic exhibition by Ron Tarver, a Grand Ole Opry tribute, a comic book artist’s exhibit, a chuck wagon exhibit, the art of Donna Howell Sickles, and even a vintage apron exhibition. Art lovers will delight in the Garis Gallery of the American West where they can view prized works of George Catlin, Frederic Remington and Charles Russell. Cowgirl artists in the Garis Gallery include KW Whitley and Marjorie Reed. Local and regional artists are also on display, including the work of Gay Faulkenberry and Oklahoma notables Paul Moore and Harold T. Holden.

The Chisholm Trail Center’s annual National Day of the Cowboy celebration continues to thrive and grow each year, bringing hundreds of excited attendees to celebrate and honor the role of the cowgirl and cowboy in the American West. They strive to include activities for young folks as well as adults, including educational programming and artist exhibits. At their always exceptional NDOC celebration you can rope a Longhorn, ride a buckin’ bronc, create your own brand, and watch the cattle stampede in the 4D Theater while you cool off during a summer thunderstorm on the Oklahoma prairie. At the Campfire Theater you can listen to Jesse Chisholm and Tex share campfire tales in spite of a ruckus in the wagon as cowboys try to get comfortable for the night.

The Chisholm Trail Heritage Center has received numerous awards as a result of the quality of its exhibits and programs, including in 2014 “Great Expectations Model School” certification (the only non-profit to hold this title consecutively for eight years). In 2005, the “American Cowboy Culture Award” for Western Museums from the National Cowboy Symposium in Lubbock, Texas and in 2003, the “Community Improvement Award” from the Duncan Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Chisholm Trail Heritage Center is one of three organizations working to create national involvement in celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the Chisholm Trail in 2017.

 

Cowboy Keeper Awards are always unique because each year a different artist or photographer contributes the artwork for the award. Renowned Prix de West and multiple award winning artist, Scott Tallman Powers, graciously provided the NDOC with his gentle image of “The Wyoming Storyteller,” for the 2016 Cowboy Keeper Awards.

The National Day of the Cowboy tips its hat to Glenn Ohrlin, Donnalyn Quintana, Cotton and Karin Rosser, John Prather, Joseph “Jo” Mora, and the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center, our 2016 Cowboy Keeper Award honorees. These esteemed recipients have not only made a substantial contribution to the preservation of our pioneer heritage and cowboy culture, they have inspired untold others to do the same.

 

 

 

Jack “Trey” Allen, 1971-2016

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With great sadness, we learned of the death of popular cowboy, ranch manager, and poet Trey Allen on July 7, 2016, after a long, brave battle with multiple myeloma.

His many, many friends and loving family know that Trey, in the words of his wife, Janice Hannagan-Allen, was “a true cowboy, thru and true all the way.” Janice commented that Trey was, “A man that has touched a million lives, not just as a poet but as a friend to all of us …. He loved you all as much as you loved him …. Your love and prayers for our family are much appreciated …”

In a recent article in Western Horseman by Senior Editor Jennifer Denison, his friend, poet Jay Snider, is quoted, “Trey is one of those guys that lives every day by the same code of ethics as the old-timers. It means something to him that your word is your bond and that you do what you say you’re going to do.”

See a Western Horseman tribute here, which includes Trey Allen’s poem, “The Way I Remember Him.”

We were honored to have a painting of Trey as the 2015 Cowboy Poetry Week poster. Photographer Carol Barlau took the photograph that was featured in Don Dane‘s painting of Trey Allen, “Cowboy True, Thru and Thru.”

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Trey’s family shared his obituary:

Jack Carter “Trey” Allen III, 45, of the McDowell Creek Community, Manhattan, Kansas, passed away peacefully with his parents present, July 7, 2016. Trey battled Multiple Myeloma cancer since 2013.

Trey was born January 20, 1971 in Richardson Texas, the son of Jack Carter Allen Jr. and Tana (Davis/Wiggins) Gasparek. He went to grade school in Claude, Texas; attended Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch, Amarillo, Texas 1983-1988; and graduated from Claude High School in 1989.

For some twenty years and change, Jack “Trey” Allen wrote and recited cowboy poetry. He started out gathering intel early in life as a bullrider/bullfighter and graduated to shoeing horses and starting colts. To those in the know, this should explain a great deal. At the point he began his family, however, the conclusion was reached that three meals a week and Copenhagen made less than desirable home conditions and he settled into a real job near the present-day metropolis of Hooker, Oklahoma. While earning a regular paycheck, he kept his hand turned at colts and shoeing, day working, and so on. It was during this time he became intimate with a little known group called “Corporate America.” Thirteen years of that and he packed his family up, headed for the mountains of south central Colorado, near Canon City, and became a full-time cowboy for the rest of his life.  In 2006, he moved to Kansas and for 10 years he managed the Moyer Ranch in the northern Flints Hills of Kansas, south of Manhattan, Kansas.

Trey performed cowboy poetry from the Gulf Coast of Alabama to North Dakota and from Missouri to Utah. He was one of four event winners at the first Cowboy Poetry Rodeo and was purty fortunate in subsequent National Cowboy Poetry Rodeo events. In 2011, Kansas hosted its first annual State Cowboy Poetry competition, and a win there offered Trey the opportunity to perform for the “Gubernatorial Entourage” at the Symphony of the Flint Hills, Alma Kansas, in front of Governor Sam Brownback; he considered that a career highlight. The Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Colorado and the Cochise Cowboy Poetry & Music Gathering in Sierra Vista, Colorado, were among his favorite gatherings to perform, along with local Kansas Livestock Association meetings.

Trey could always be seen wearing his trademark pink tall tops, colorful shirt and just as colorful wild rag on stage. His girls would call him “The Skittles cowboy.”  Trey titled himself as “Cowboy Poet, Humorist, Surveyor of Kingdoms, and Practitioner of Quality, Truth and Improvement.”

Trey was past president of the Kansas Livestock Association, local chapter in Junction City, Kansas.

Trey is survived by his wife, Janice (Hannagan) Allen, Manhattan, Kansas; three daughters, Shandee, Edmond Oklahoma, and Lara and Tera M., Cushing, Oklahoma; two step children, Jenna and Colton, Manhattan, Kansas; mother, Tana (Davis/Wiggins) Gasparek, Tres Piedras, New Mexico; step father (the man Trey called dad) Dee Aduddell and his wife Ronda, Claude, Texas; sisters Tera J. Ingram, Emporia, Kansas and Shana Aduddell, Amarillo, Texas; two brothers, Cody Aduddell, Claude, Texas and Seth Aduddell, Amarillo, Texas; two nephews, Tough Medina, Emporia, Kansas and Trenton Richey, Pampa, Texas; a favorite niece, Evelyn Aduddell, Claude, Texas; along with all his brothers from Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch in Amarillo, Texas and all his numerous cowboy poet friends.

Trey was preceded in death by his father Jack Carter Allen Jr., December 29, 1972.

Trey’s wish was to have his three girls take a road trip to scatter his ashes at all the ranches where he was employed and where he day-worked.

There will be a celebration of life, or as Trey would call, it a “shindig,” later this fall at the McDowell Creek Community Center, Manhattan, Kansas.  In lieu of flowers, please make donations to “Allen Girls’ College Fund,” 15601 Hannagan Road, Manhattan KS 66502.  Their education was very important to him.

Sunny Hancock/Leon Flick Memorial Cowboy Poetry Show

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The annual Sunny Hancock/Leon Flick Memorial Cowboy Poetry Show in Paisley, Oregon, is held in memory of Lake County poets Sunny Hancock and Leon Flick and raises funds for a local cowboy crisis/scholarship fund.

The 2016 show takes place August 13 and features poets Chris Isaccs and Jesse Smith, who were long-time friends of Sunny Hancock and Leon Flick.  They appeared with Sunny Hancock as “The Cardiac Cowboys.”

See a Lake County Examiner video report of the 2015 show here.

Find more about the show on its Facebook page.

IT SORTA MAKES SENSE by Virginia Bennett

 

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IT SORTA MAKES SENSE
by Virginia Bennett

A friend of mine, (I’ll call him Pete)
was watching TV the other day.
He listened to some reporter,
believin’ all he had to say.
It was a “human interest piece”
tho’ some would call it fluff.
And, it showed a lot of fancy folks
with their poodles struttin’ stuff.

And, the reporter said, “It has long been
established as a scientific fact
that dogs look like their owners
and by data this has been backed.”
Well, Pete looked down at his old dog
lyin’ faithfully on the floor:
His tongue lolled out (the dog’s, not Pete’s)
as he laid there in full-snore.

His one good eye was swollen shut
from one of the milk-cow’s kicks.
He’d lost patches of his mangy fur
from diggin’ at his ticks.
A trophy brought home gallantly
from a coyote fight last week,
was one ear torn completely in half
and a new scar on his beak.

He had porky quills stickin’ out of his gums
he only had one dew claw…
And since the stud horse aimed just right
he drinks his toilet water through a straw!
Yes, Pete looked down, then looked at the screen
his cowboy mind in a muddled fog.
And said, “If it’s true that dogs look like their owners…
then, I gotta get a better lookin’ dog!”

©2004, Virginia Bennett, used with permission

Cowboy, horsewoman, poet, musician, writer, and editor Virginia Bennett’s acclaimed body of work is collected in her books and in a number of anthologies. This poem is included in her most recent book, In the Company of Horses. She’s the editor of two important collections, Cowgirl Poetry and Cowboy Poetry: The Reunion.

She was often a featured poet at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering and other events until she suffered a serious horse-related injury about ten years ago.

Find some selections of her poetry and more about her and her publications in our feature at CowboyPoetry.com and visit BennettSpurs.com, where she and her husband Pete craft unique spurs for working cowboys.

This recent photo is by writer and working cowboy Amy Steiger, who works on Arizona’s Spider ranch. Ranch manager, songwriter, and filmmaker Gail Steiger is shown, with a new puppy and another ranch dog.

Amy Steiger is the author of three acclaimed books, two novels and an essay collection, and another essay collection, Ordinary Skin, is undergoing final editing.

She appears with Trinity Seely this weekend in Bridgeport, California, and is headed this year to the Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering (August 11-13) and Durango Cowboy Poetry Gathering (Sept 29-Oct 1). In early 2017 she’s featured at the Western Folklife Center’s National Cowboy Poetry Gathering (January 30-February 4) and the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering (February 23-24). Find more about Amy Steiger at CowboyPoetry.com and at AmyHaleAuker.com.

(Please respect copyright. You can share this poem and photo with this post, but please request permission for any other uses.)

Gathering Report: California Rodeo Salinas’ Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering

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California Rodeo Salinas Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering
report by Bill Vaughan

On Sunday, July 17th,  2016, the California Rodeo Salinas’ Cowboy Music & Poetry Gathering brought together a group of great entertainers to “Wow” the folks in attendance with wonderful cowboy music and verse. This marked the 29th year of the event and was, once again, very successful in doing so.

Sherwood Hall in Salinas was the venue and wine and Swiss Sausage BBQ was the fare. The Committee put together an array of silent auction items that were quite varied and included a live auction of delicious baked goods and a catered Polenta and Stew dinner, as well.

The show started off with the doors opening at 1:00 PM for folks to come on in and have a sampling of nice local wines and some hors d’oeuvres and look over the silent auction tables. The cabaret seating made the auditorium perfect to sit and visit over wine and treats and, for those who wished, a Swiss Sausage meal was also available.

It was the talent present that made the show, though! From open mic amateurs to the seasoned pros. The Salinas Valley’s own Cowboy Poet “Laureate,” Clem Albertoni, was on hand to serve as master of ceremonies and included, of course, his own brand of down-home wit and poetry. Clem has been a local favorite for decades and did not disappoint. Clem’s first duty was to introduce the open mic folks to come up and share their own talent with the crowd. Following open mic, The Youth Orchestra of Salinas, YOSAL, performed the National Anthem and a selection of songs including Patsy Cline’s “I Fall to Pieces.” I spoke briefly with Joanne Taylor Johnson and she informed me that the YOSAL program is continuing to grow and succeed and it shows. What a great group of young musicians!

After YOSAL’s performance, the Monterey County Free Library Foundation introduced the three winners of the annual Cowboy Poetry Contest. First off was 13 year old Broden Murray reciting his winning entry,  “The Golden Valley,”  then 11 year old Katie Mazerik and her winning poem, “Old American Cowboy,”, and then 5 year old June Paul Harbaugh stood by on stage while her winning poem, “Cowboys are Cowboys” was read. All showed great potential and were some of the best winners ever to be on the show.

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Chyrle Bacon (photo by Best Shot Video)

Chyrle Bacon followed with six-gun twirling, whip cracking and trick roping. She amazed and amused all when she coerced California 2nd Vice-president, Dave Pedrazzi, on stage for some whip-play…western style. Dave survived, just barely, though. Chyrle had the room laughing with her infectious cackle of a laugh. She was a real western Hoot!

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Larry Maurice (Photo by Best Shot Video)

Next up was Larry Maurice. This was not Larry’s first appearance here; he has been in Salinas before. Larry is the recipient of The Academy of Western Artists, Cowboy Poet of the Year award, as well as having received the American Cowboy Culture Award for Lifetime Achievement in Cowboy Poetry. Larry shared his energetic and fast-paced delivery of original stories and poems along with some favorite old classics that he’s known for. His portion of the show had the audience smiling throughout.

c4Los Vaqueros Hunting Club Traveling Band (photo by Best Shot Video)

Los Vaqueros Hunting Club Traveling Band hit the stage next. This local band has been performing for decades, as well, and are local favorites. Brothers, Randy and Terry Handley have been combining their voices for some of the best harmonizing anyone could ever hope to hear. Born and raised in nearby Soledad, they have polished their style all their lives. Randy is the front man of the band with Terry providing the vocal harmonies. Jim Geil was on hand to expertly pick his electric guitar and include some vocals while Roger Hill backed it all up with his bass guitar rhythms. Many in the audience have heard these guys before and all agreed, they’ve never been better. The selection of songs and the clever banter hit the spot!

Intermission was preceded with a live “cake auction” and got quite spirited with Butch Lindley serving as auctioneer.

 

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Dave Stamey took the stage with the lovely and talented Annie Lydon
(photo by Best Shot Video)

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Dave Stamey (photo by Best Shot Video)

Following a brief intermission, Dave Stamey took the stage with the lovely and talented Annie Lydon. Never a disappointment, Dave has been a Salinas favorite for many years and has starred at this show several times in the past. Seven times named Entertainer of the Year and five times Songwriter of the Year by the Western Music Association, Dave shared why with the folks in attendance. A great voice, a great guitar picker, original songs and Annie singing along. There’s none better, folks! Dave’s songs are musical stories and that’s what Cowboy Songs are supposed to be. Each song tells a tale and the tune that goes with it is perfect, every time. That’s the “why”. Dave has a way with the audience, too, between songs. His wit is nearly as enjoyable as his songs. Annie Lydon joined Dave on stage and in recordings several years ago and I would never say that Dave’s style lacked for anything, but what she adds makes me wonder…

So, with that, the 29th annual California Rodeo Salinas’ Cowboy Music and Poetry Gathering is in the books! It was a fabulous show with great talent, great wine and food, put on by a great committee of volunteers!

Come and see it when it hits 30!

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Larry Maurice and Dave Stamey (photo by Best Shot Video)

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California Rodeo Salinas Cowboy Music & Poetry Committee 2016
(Photo by Best Shot Video)

c9Co-Chairs Lydia Miranda and Clem Albertoni
(Photo by Best Shot Video)

Find more at http://www.carodeo.com.