Cowboy Poetry and Music Gathering returning to SaddleBrooke Jan. 12

The Third Annual SaddleBrooke Cowboy Poetry and Music Gathering will be held on Sat. Jan. 12, from 3 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Desert View Performing Arts Center. The big stars of the night are returning poet Dave Stamey, Randy Rieman and featured guest star RW Hampton.

The Al Mollenkopf-produced fundraising show, which benefits the SaddleBrooke Tucson Troop Support Group, has raised over $7,000 to help support active duty troops, their families and other Tucson veterans.

Cowboy singer Dave Stamey, a big hit in previous years, is back as a headliner. Stamey is one of the best western songwriters alive today, known for his perfect blend of melody, lyric and engagement with his audience.

It’s been said one can almost feel the wind against their face and smell the soft scent of the sage as Stamey creates a rewarding journey through the panorama of the West.

He has been called the Charley Russell of Western Music and it’s an apt description. Charles M. Russell was a gifted period artist who painted over 2,000 canvases of cowboys, Indians, and the landscape of the American West in the late 1800s and early 1900s, each done with emotional resonance and meticulous detail.

What Russell is known to do on canvas, Stamey does with lyric and melody.

His songs capture the life of the modern cowboy in a world of rapid transition, where some things change constantly, and some things never change at all. He has been a working cowboy, rancher, mule packer and dude wrangler, so he understands the territory, knows his audience, and is a rare combination of natural entertainer and astute businessman.

His recorded work feels authentic, professional, culturally and historically accurate, but, not overly fussy. Among his many independently released albums are Buckaroo Man (1997), Tonopah (1999), Campfire Waltz (2000), Wheels (2001), If I Had a Horse (2003), the live ‘It’s a State of Mind’ (2007), Old Friends (2007), and Come Ride with Me (2009).

R.W. Hampton, one of the leading western entertainers in America, attracts fans from all walks of life. After twenty-two years in the entertainment business, Hampton is still pure cowboy, singing about what he loves best.

Born to be a cowboy, he grew up in a Texas town, and lived and worked on ranches all over the American West. Whether driving cows, shoeing horses, singing around the campfire, or leading horse rides in the high country, Hampton knew it was the life for which he was destined.

He is known for his patriotism, family values and Christian beliefs as much as for his rich baritone. His qualities resonate with cowboys, cowgirls, ranch hands, farmers and those who have never seen a cow, opening their minds up to a world of early mornings, hard work, rough horses, maverick cattle and the open range.

Hampton has worked in three Kenny Rogers movies, included 1985’s Wild Horses, as well as numerous other films like The Tracker with Kris Kristofferson. Along the way Hampton has performed all over the United States including The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville and The Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. He has also appeared at cowboy events in the United Kingdom, Australia and Brazil.

R.W. has thirteen albums to his credit over the past 20 years. His peers in the Western entertainment industry have honored his performing and songwriting fifteen times, perhaps most notably in Nov., 2011, when he was inducted into the Western Music Association’s Hall of Fame. More can be learned about him on his website, RWHampton.com.

Master reciter Randy Rieman is back in SaddleBrooke for a second time. He’s been a featured performer at events across the West, including the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, NV, and many other gatherings.

My job is to deliver the poem in a manner worthy of the piece and to convey through the spoken words the way the piece feels to me on the inside,” Rieman says. “I try to visualize the story while I’m reciting. It’s a real privilege to share these great writers’ works with an audience. I am hopeful that the authors would approve of my efforts.”

Rieman has made his living as a working cowboy and a horse trainer for the last 30 years. He started his cowboy career in Montana, and then moved to Nevada and California, spending several years working in each state. In 1994, he went to work for the Parker Ranch on the big island of Hawaii and spent the next nine years there starting colts and training stock horses.

“I consider myself a reciter and not an entertainer or a poet,” Rieman says. “I do hope my recitations are entertaining and my goal is to deliver them as skillfully as possible. I feel that I am the messenger, not the message.”

Ticket prices are set at $26 in advance or $30 at the door. Call 825-2818 or go to www.dypac.net for online tickets.

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