Rodeo Songs

Earlier this month, I linked some coal mining songs.  Another prolific source of American music has been the rodeo.  Here are a few songs on that theme that I like.

Bucking Horse Moon, Tom Russell

All This Way for the Short Ride, Tom Russell

Everything That Glitters is Not Gold,  Dan Seals

Someday Soon, Suzy Bogguss

Also Someday Soon, Ian Tyson

Saddle Bronc Girl, Ian Tyson

And this one isn’t about the rodeo, but about a young cowboy and his first cattle drive:

Banks of the Musselshell, Tom Russell

…and the same song by Ian Tyson


7 thoughts on “Rodeo Songs”

  1. I’m surprised you didn’t list my favorite country song, “Amarillo by Morning” by George Strait.

    “I’ll be lookin’ for eight when they pull that gate, and I hope that judge ain’t blind.”

  2. Ummm … you have never heard the song, “Rodeo”, by one of the biggest names in country music, Garth Brooks? From one of the biggest-selling country albums of all time, “Ropin’ the Wind”?

    I begin to suspect these “______ Songs” posts are AI-generated.
    Of course, maybe you choose to ignore Garth Brooks’ “Rodeo” because it is not in any way about the traditional Western skills competition that most people use the word “rodeo” to mean.

    The song is about gay sex.

    “Rodeo” has got to be the gayest song in the history of country music. It’s up there with anything by Queen or the Village People. “Rodeo” in this song actually means gay “circuit parties” where wealthy rootless urban homosexuals gather to party with cocaine and male prostitutes. The fact the “Rodeo” is in Tulsa, OK, is to me a dead giveaway — Tulsa is a notorious stop on the party circuit, cocaine and oil money put it up there with Miami and Palm Springs.

    The song starts … the cowboy is going off to the “rodeo” again, his woman hates it, wishes he’d stay home, but that’s just the way he is:

    “His Eyes are cold and restless
    His wounds have almost healed
    She’s give half of Texas
    Just to change the way he feels

    She knows his love’s in Tulsa
    She knows he’s gonna go
    But it ain’t no woman of flesh and blood <– Y'all got that right
    It's that dammned ole' rodeo!"

    Why is he going to Tulsa?

    "It's boots and shafts and cowboy hats
    It's spurs and a lotta gold"

    Hmmmmm. Some friends and I thought the big surge in country music's popularity in the early '90's (entirely due to SoundScan, but that's another topic) would bring "gay country" out in the open. The hats, the fashion (the gay man's uniform of that time was black jeans and a bright-colored, immaculate dress shirt — JUST LIKE GARTH BROOKS), the S&M connotations of roping and spurs, etc. The song "Rodeo" was a foundational document, along with Toby Kieth's "I'll Take the Dirt Road".

    DIdn't happen, but not for some trying.


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