Last night found us in Richfield, Utah, to enjoy some fine cowboy entertainment. Stepping onto the stage were some of the best wranglers of Western words you’ll find anywhere.
Andy Nelson of Wyoming pens some of the funniest cowboy poetry going. He’s also adept at more reflective verse, and is author of an enjoyable book, Ridin’ with Jim, built around growing-up experiences with his father.
At times, Andy teams up with Utah singer/songwriter Brenn Hill, trading poems and songs on stage. Brenn has been mentioned here before, lately as composer of “And the River Ran Red,” using words I wrote. Brenn’s ability as a songwriter covers the West both wide and deep, and his music, recorded on some dozen albums, earns him well-deserved recognition.
California cowboy Dave Stamey has won every award available for a Western singer/songwriter, many of them more than once. Dave’s insightful writing, virtuoso guitar licks, and comfortable presence on stage are always enjoyable.
There are plenty of cowboy singers and poets regaling the world with their works and I appreciate the talents of many of them. But you’d have to cover a lot of range to find the equal of these three—not only for their abilities as entertainers on the stage, but for the riveting qualities of the words they write.
And the fact that I count them all as friends is the result of my admiration, not the cause.