Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering
has received the prestigious
Arizona Governor's Arts Award, chosen from among many outstanding
organization was recognized during the 31st annual Governor's Arts Awards
in Phoenix, March 27, 2012.
Arizona Commission on the Arts describes the gathering in its
news about the award:
The Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering, the oldest in Arizona, will
celebrate its 25th anniversary in August to support its mission to
educate, promote and preserve cowboy poetry, music and western heritage
culture and history. The Gathering not only provides entertainment, but
an opportunity for poets and bearers of cowboy oral traditions to
assemble in a spirit of mutual appreciation and support and to
strengthen ties with the ranching community and general public. In
recent years, the organization has brought poetry into fourth-grade
classrooms in the Prescott area to introduce students to poetry, the
ranching heritage of Yavapai County and the music of the cowboy.
article by Nicholas DeMarino in the AZEdge quotes the
gathering's president, Jim Buchanan; poet and musician
Sally Bates; and others. It comments
on the growth of event, "The Cowboy Poets Gathering launched in 1987,
pulling crowds of about 300-400...Today it nets roughly 3,000 attendees."
The 25th annual Arizona Cowboy Poets Gathering takes place August 9-11,
2012 in Prescott. Find information at
is featured in the February/March issue of
An article by Montana writer Melissa Mylchreest, "For the Love of the West,"
profiles the popular Canadian poet and includes her comments "on language,
landscape, and laughter." Doris Daley is quoted about what inspires her
writing, saying it is, "...mostly instinct. When you grow up on a ranch, the
line between your inner landscape and your outer landscape is so blurred that
it almost doesn't exist."
Ranch & Reata
The recipient of multiple awards and recognitions for her poetry, Doris Daley
performs at events across the West. In recent months she has made return
appearances to the
National Cowboy Poetry Gathering and the
Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering. She
has a recent book,
West Word Ho!
and recordings. Her work is included on each volume of
The BAR-D Roundup.
Find more about Doris Daley and some of her poetry in our feature
here and at
Also among the highlights in the current issue: Songwriter and
wide-ranging article centered on Curley
Fletcher's "The Strawberry
Roan," which delves into "The Art of the Bucking Stock
Lyric," the literacy of cowboy writers, the history of Curley
Fletcher's work, and more;
cover story about rodeo photographer
"Images Fueled by Light and Passion," accompanied by Pettit's
stunning photography; an article and recipe featuring ranch
hand, writer, and poet
Amy Hale Auker's
"Amy's Stew; award-winning
"Ten Best Rodeo Songs"; publisher Bill Reynolds' piece
on young Utah poet
Augusta "Gussie" Keech; celebrated horseman
"What's the Rush";
an excerpt from Western writer and photographer
which is being serialized in the magazine; and much more.
The impressive print edition of
Ranch & Reata
is published in limited editions.
Find some entries about
Ranch & Reata
and find more information
where you can also view on-line versions of the current and
Poet and writer
is the recipient of two
from the Western Writers of America.
His poem "Tabula Rasa,"
from his recent book,
Things a Cowboy Sees
received the Best
Western Poem Award, and his story, "The Death of Delgado," from
The Traditional West; a Western Fictioneers Anthology,
received the Best Short Fiction award.
Rod Miller has contributed a number of
essays to CowboyPoetry.com about writing and reciting cowboy poetry. Find
a list here in our feature that includes more
about him, his publications, and some of his poetry. His poem, "The
Beauty of Mountains," is included on the forthcoming edition of
The BAR-D Roundup. Find more at
Western singer and songwriter
received the Best Western Song Spur Award for "Morning Star Moon" from his album,
He has previously received Spur awards for Best Novel and Best Song.Cindy Meehl
received the Spur Award for their documentary script for
the widely acclaimed film about legendary horseman Buck Brannaman.
The organization notes, "Since 1953, Western Writers of America has
promoted and honored the best in Western literature with the annual Spur
Awards, selected by panels of judges. Awards, for material published last year,
are given for works whose inspiration, image, and literary excellence best
represent the reality and spirit of the American West...
Winners and finalists will be honored June 12-16, 2012 at the WWA Convention in
Albuquerque, New Mexico."
Find the winners in all 17 categories in our
Awards News here.
Senior editor Jennifer Denison offers an insightful look
at horseman, singer, and songwriter Mike Beck
in "Roaming Troubadour" in the
April, 2012 issue of
The illustrated feature article delves into his cowboying history, his time
spent with the legendary horseman Bill Dorrance, and how his experiences
influence his music.
Mike Beck is quoted Bill Dorrance, "Bill taught me that to do something well, you have to live it,
breathe it, never stop thinking about it, and then start over the next day. If
I'm learning a new melody, I remind myself to go slow, take my time and put it
all together. That's the same thing Bill taught me to do with horses."
Mike Beck's songs, "Don't Tell Me" and "In Old California"
(written with Ian Tyson) were cited
as among the "top 13 songs for the trail" in the April, 2009 issue of
Western Horseman. In this issue, "Beck's Picks" include his favorite ten
albums in a range of genres.
See our feature about Mike Beck
The April issue also includes a review of R.J. Vandygriff's (cowboyaintdeadyet.com)
"The Cowboy Ain't Dead Yet." R.J. Vandygriff's "Keep the Campfire A
Burnin',” recently received the Western Heritage
Wrangler Award for Outstanding Original Composition from the National Cowboy &
Western Heritage Museum.
The issue's cover is Tim Cox' painting, "The
New Foal," and the work is featured in a "concept to completion" article about
the painting. ("At His Own Pace" by Tim Cox was the image selected for the 2007
Cowboy Poetry Week poster. See our feature about Tim Cox
Other interesting articles include contributing editor Ryan T. Bell's cover
story, "Wide Open," about a three-day horse drive through western Idaho,
accompanied by his striking photos; Assistant editor Kate Bradley's "Time
Stands Still," about California's Gabilan Ranch, with photographs by Western
Horseman publisher Darrell Dodds; and the third and final part of "Moon &
Mozaun," about the training of a 2-year-old gelding, written by Susan Morrison,
with photographs by Western Horseman editor Ross Hecox.
Black's commentary, "New
Horses, Rough Country," is in his regular On the Edge of
Common Sense column and there is an audio version of the column
on the Western Horseman web site.
Many additional articles on cowboy culture, ranching,
horsemanship, and rodeo are included in the magazine's
Hands-on Horseman, and
Inside the Arena
www.WesternHorseman.com for more about the current issue
and web-only features, including many audio pieces by
and a slide show of top Western artist
Bill Owen's 30 Western
Horseman covers, with his commentary.
[image of Mike Beck at the Dorrance Ranch by John McCleary]
Ian Tyson's words have
become public art in Calgary. A March 28, 2012
article in the
Calgary Herald quotes a local official, "We
wanted to embed poetry...and the thought was cowboy poetry," and the
reporter comments, "And only words from the West's consummate cowboy poet
The words etched into the large limestone sculpture are from Ian Tyson's
song "Land of Shining Mountains," from his 2005 Songs from the Gravel
See the article
A separate March 28, 2012
article by CBC-Canada includes a video of the song, which
is also here on
Ian Tyson has been named the Parade Marshall for the
Calgary Stampede, which
celebrates its centennial July 6-15, 2012. Read more in an article
Find more about Ian Tyson at his site,
popular singer (Georgia's
Official Balladeer), songwriter, radio host, poet, and Entertainment and
Sponsorship Manager for the
Booth Western Art
Museum. He died in an auto accident on Wednesday, March 21.
With the deepest sadness, we have learned of the death of
Doc was the organizer of the Booth Museum's two annual
cowboy gatherings and was an important force in their educational outreach.
From a March 21st Booth Museum media release:
It is with great sadness Booth Western Art Museum
shares the news of the sudden passing of Entertainment & Sponsorship Manager
Executive Director Seth Hopkins states, "Booth Western Art Museum is so sorry
to have lost our long-time friend and employee, Doc Stovall, in a tragic
accident this morning. He will be sorely missed."
A native Virginian, Doc was well known as a Western singer and cowboy poet
throughout America, having performed in twenty-five of the fifty states.
Honored in 2002 as Georgia's Official Cowboy Balladeer by the Georgia State
Legislature, he entertained audiences both young and old as he strived to
keep alive the history of the West in music and song. In November of 2004,
Doc was inducted into the Atlanta Country Music Hall of Fame, the first
cowboy singer so honored, and in October of 2009 he received the Cowboy
Keeper Award from the National Day of the Cowboy Association for his
contributions to the preservation of Western heritage and cowboy culture. He
had been employed as the Entertainment and Sponsorship Manager for Booth
Western Art Museum since 2004.
Continued Hopkins, "We are appreciative of the condolences and kind words
received throughout the day. We will let people know of arrangements as they
Find a March 24, 2012 article from the Atlanta
Doc Stovall has several recordings and was working on a
book of his cowboy poetry and a recording.
Photographer Mike McLean (www.McLeanPhoto.com)
was working with Doc Stovall on an album project. He has shared selected images
from the project here and commented on the
one above, "He was a special man who touched so many lives. Of all the images I
shot last year this was the one we all agreed captured his spirit most."
See Doc Stovall and his Tumbleweed Band in a video
Find some of his poetry and lyrics in our feature
Find services information in our post
[photo at top by
Jeri L. Dobrowski
Wylie Gustafson, Wylie & the Wild
West, and "rodeo poet"
perform in Russia, March 21-31, 2012, at the
American Traditional Music Festival, part of "American Seasons in
Russia," under the auspices of the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential
Commission. From the program's description:
CEC ArtsLink, in collaboration with the
American Folklife Center of the
Library of Congress, brings to Russia American performing groups that
have made a significant contribution to the preservation and awareness of
cultural heritage. With support from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, the exciting
concert series Festival of Traditional American Music as part of the
"American Seasons in Russia" program will present a view of American cultural
life that makes a distinct statement about the diversity of our artists and
the vitality of our communities. The performers are true masters of their
genres, dedicated to sharing their knowledge and ensuring endurance of these
art forms for generations to come.
A March 16, 2012 article by Kristen Inbody in the
Great Falls Tribune, "Montanans
in Russia are ambassadors for cowboy culture," reports on the tour and
quotes both Wylie Gustafson and Paul Zarzyski.
Wylie & the Wild West and Paul Zarzyski just finished a
tour of the West coast, sponsored by the
National Council for the Traditional Arts,
Don't Fence Me In; Songs, Music, and Poetry of the
See more about Wylie Gustafson in our feature
and more about Paul Zarzyski here.
see her gallery of western performers and others
Desert Caballeros Western Museum
with a Camera," March 10-May 27, 2012.
From their description:
Featuring the work of some of the most talented women photographers in
the nation working in the Western genre, this first annual invitational
Cowgirls with a Camera exhibition will thrill fine art photography lovers.
The subject matter ranges from mustangs to working horses, ranch life to
rodeo, and the stunning landscapes of the American West.
Lori Faith Merritt, noted equine photographer and an official
photographer for the Western Music Association, is among the invited
photographers. She shared the image above, "One Day," which will be included in
Lori Faith Merritt's photograph, "Heading
Out," was featured in a special National Day of the Cowboy
Art Spur in 2009. See the image and the resulting
Find more about Lori Faith Merritt and her
galleries at photographybyfaith.com.
Find more about the exhibit at the
Desert Caballeros Western Museum web
[image: "One Day"
© 2012, Lori Faith Merritt,
Respected cowboy balladeer Don
Edwards is featured in an interview in the April/May, 2012 issue of
magazine by Deputy Editor Tom Wilmes.
Edwards tells about his latest project, "a forthcoming album that explores the
crossroads of cowboy music and the blues," his cowboy music roots and interest
in the history of cowboy songs, and more about his work and life.
Update 3/8: Find the entire article and a video
Find more about Don Edwards in our feature
here and visit his web site,
The magazine's fold-out cover features the work of
master photographer of David Stoecklein (stoeckleinphotography.com)
and inside, a feature includes his images of cowboys, from Texas to Montana.
Top cowboy singer and songwriter
Dave Stamey's recent CD, Twelve Mile Road,
is a featured review, in a piece written by Charley Engel
of Calling All Cowboys radio. Dave Stamey is quoted, "It's the best
thing I've done...It's more about my experiences in the ranching world and my
history." Charley Engel also has a capsule review of
Jean Prescott's America, Home Sweet Home
("moving songs about those who have answered the call to duty"), and Tom Wilmes
has a brief review of Wylie & the Wild West's
Rocketbuster ("Every note...echoes with joy").
There are many additional articles and features in this
issue, which includes a cover feature, "Homes on the Range; the 20 Best Rural
Towns in the West." Regular departments include Frontiers, Cowboys,
Travel, Gear, KnowHow, and Then & Now. The
American Cowboy web site
has additional features.
[photo by Donald Kallaus]
Rancher and Wyoming Poet Laureate
recent poetry collection,
Married Into It,
recipient of the
Western Heritage Wrangler Award
for Outstanding Poetry Book
from the National
Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum
South Dakota rancher, poet, writer and editor
Linda M. Hasselstrom has
commented about the book, "Patricia Frolander’s tough and tender poems introduce us to
the history of a community and a loving family. She portrays the
labors of ranch life in exquisite and sometimes bone-chilling
detail, explaining why both 'Commitment' and 'Denial' mean so much.
Her 'Attitude' makes the difference between success and failure, and
she finds joy in every day.”
Find more about Patricia Frolander and read some of her poetry in our
Some previous recipients of the Outstanding Poetry Book
Western Heritage Wrangler Award include Paul
Zarzyski, J.B. Allen,
Andy Wilkinson, Linda Hasselstrom, Linda
Hussa, Bruce Roseland, and
Recipients of 2012 music awards are R.J. Vandygriff
Original Composition) and Dan Roberts (Outstanding Traditional Western Music Album).
Find all 2012 Wrangler Award recipients in all other categories in our news
here and at the Museum's site
Awards will be presented at the 51st Anniversary Western
Heritage Awards at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, April 21,
[photo of Patricia Frolander by
Francie Ganje; a
ward photo courtesy of the National
Western and Cowboy Heritage Museum: "The coveted Wrangler, a stunning bronze sculpture of a
cowboy on horseback, is presented by the National Cowboy & Western
Heritage Museum in 15 categories of Western music, film, television and
literature in the Western genre." ]
Montana ranch hand, poet, picker and songwriter
DW Groethe is featured on NPR's Weekend
Edition Sunday's "What's
in a Song," broadcast February 26, 2012. He tells about the inspiration
for his song, "One for the Workin' Cowboy," and performs it. You can listen to
DW Groethe has performed many times at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering and
at other events, including the National Folk Festival in Richmond, Virginia,
and Butte, Montana. In 2005, he was invited to Washington, D.C., by the
American Folklife Center and the Library of Congress, with performances at the
Library and on the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage.
Find more about DW Groethe in our feature
"What's in a Song" is an occasional series from the
Western Folklife Center
"that weaves together a tapestry of American music, one song and one story at a
time..." Previous programs have included Baxter Black,
Mike Beck, Stephanie
Davis, Connie Dover, Stan Howe, Tom Russell, and others. Find many of the
broadcasts here at NPR and also
here at the Western Folklife Center.
[photo © 2009, Jessica Brandi Lifland,