Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Words in the week: Cowboy songs in June #1

I love Pandora radio and have a very eclectic list of radio stations.  One I've been listening to a lot lately is Ian Tyson- which primarily plays not only his music but old cowboy songs from a variety of artists.  Maybe my recent drive to listen to these old songs is my own nostalgic wish to have been able to live as free on the range as the cowboys in days gone by did.  No cell phone. No demands from the outside world. It's also the time of the year when ranchers begin moving their cattle up to the forest on horseback. We'll drive alongside them and hear the clop of a horses hooves on the pavement, the swish of the grass as the cattle move along, and the low voices of the cowboys, or girls, as they talk to the cattle encouraging them along.

Any cowboy will tell you it's not an easy life, and they have demands of a different nature, but very few would choose any other way of life.  I like the song "Night Riders Lament" because it expresses the very reasons a cowboy chooses this particular way of life, even when the world views them as being crazy. Their choice lies not in monetary income or worldly gain, but instead follows a desire to be close to the land and have a life full of freedoms most people only dream about.

Performed by Nanci Griffith and Don Edwards.

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