Iconic Singer / Songwriter Michael Martin Murphey Brings Cowboy Music To Cheyenne Frontier Days

CHEYENNE, WYOMING — For the first time in more than 120 years, the historic Cheyenne Frontier Days will offer visitors a chance to hear authentic American Cowboy Music, courtesy of iconic Western singer / Songwriter Michael Martin Murphey, the top selling artist of the genre of all time.
 
From July 23 — 31 (with the exception of the 28th and 30th), Murphey will perform at the Sidewinder Saloon at the Old Frontier Town near the east side of the stadium where the 10-day Western Celebration hosts “The Daddy of ‘em All,” the world's largest outdoor rodeo.  In addition to a rodeo that draws the top professional cowboys competing for more than $1 million in cash and prizes, Cheyenne Frontier Days is a celebration of the western lifestyle. 
The Sidewinder Saloon is located in the Old Frontier Town, which highlights Western merchants, craftspeople, artisans, and even some special guest characters like Lillie Langtry, Buffalo Bill Cody, Wild Bill Hickock and Wyatt Earp.   Murphey’s shows begin at 3 p.m. each day ( except on July 28 and 30when he will be in Red River, New Mexico).  On the 31st, he performs at The Sidewinder Saloon at noon. 
“This is definitely my wheelhouse,” Murphey said.  “I’ve been passionate about the cowboy culture my entire life, and having the chance to perform the songs that defined that world at this event is a huge honor for me.”
Best known for a genre busting career that includes topping the Pop, Country, Bluegrass and Western Music charts — with hits like “Wildfire,” “Carolina In The Pines,” “What’s Forever For,” “Boy From The Country,” “Cherokee Fiddle” and “Cowboy Logic” to name a few — Murphey is often credited with revitalizing the American Cowboy Music genre when in 1990 he bucked the system and released his first volume of Cowboy Songs album.   That album was the first so-themed album to do so since Marty Robbin’s 1959 classic, Gunfighter Ballads and Trail Songs. 
“Few people are dedicated to preserving the heritage and beauty of the American West quite like cowboy singer-songwriter Michael Martin Murphey,” wrote Cowboys & Indians Magazine. “Through his music he tells the stories and romance of the Native Americans, cowboys, horsemen, ranchers, outlaws, and lawmen. But Murphey has gone beyond storytelling through active involvement in the conservation of the relics and landscape that define his most treasured region.”
Murphey’s new album, High Stakes: Cowboy Songs VII, speaks directly to his love of the western way of life, largely praising and extolling its importance in our world. 
“It may sound like an oxymoron, but  ‘Cowboy Culture’ is real and relevant,” Murphey says. “I celebrate men and women who love Dirt, Grass and Water.
“Truth is, cowboys and cowgirls can save the planet.”
Murphey himself has been a long-time activist and outspoken supporter of caring for land and water. Murphey was inspired by the work of noted Zimbabwean Ecologist, Dr. Alan Savory, who was a consultant to his  ranching partnership with Holistic Grazing pioneer Bert Madera of Jal, New Mexico.
“Grasslands sequester carbon,” Murphey explains. “Too much carbon in the atmosphere instead of the grass and soil is the real cause of climate change. Ranchers around the world are fighting leaving ground bare and managed grazing is a key way to do that.
"Real environmentalists are the men and women who spend their days working the land responsibly to ensure its health for generations to come.”
The message is so potent that when Murphey appeared at Earth Day Texas last year, the founder of the event, Trammel S. Crow, Jr. asked Murphey to become the Official Ambassador for their 2016 event, held in April in Dallas.
With Murphey Western Institute, they created the Grazing Land Restoration Initiative.
“Michael is more than an award-winning country western singer-songwriter,” said Crow. “He is also an avid steward of the culture and landscape of the American West.  We have a mutual interest in protecting the environment for future generations.”
Murphey returns to his singing cowboy roots on High Stakes to tell riveting human stories of love and hate, sin and redemption, loss and risk, failure and victory, revenge and forgiveness and family legacy.
From the rollicking notes of the title track "High Stakes", to the final notes of the lovely “The End of the Road,” Murphey celebrates the western lifestyle so well-dramatized by the passionate struggles of the grazing land cultures of the world who literally live and die by managing land and water.
Among the highlights are his take on John Williamson's “Three Sons,” and "Campfire on the Road,” Roger Creager’s “I’ve Got The Guns,” and Marty Robbins’ standards “Running Gun” and “Master’s Call.”
 The wonderful “Emilia Farewell” and “The End Of The Road” — both written with son, Ryan Murphey —are gorgeous traditional cowboy songs.  On the title track, also written with Ryan and third collaborator Pauline Reese, Murphey explains there is an urgency to his message: “You don’t understand the cards you’re holding and your hands start to shake / High Stakes.”                                                               

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Michael Martin Murphey returns to Red River for fourth consecutive summer season
 
There are a lot of reasons that iconic singer - songwriter Michael Martin Murphey likes to return to Red River, New Mexico as often as possible. In fact, he loves it so much, he, along with Red River businessman Steve Heglund, opened the Rocking 3M Amphitheater where Murphey will perform twice weekly beginning in July and continuing through Labor Day Weekend.
    “Red River is my spiritual home,” said Murphey.  “It’s absolutely stunning here. I went there several times when I was still in high school,” he continues.   “I was hooked on the sheer beauty of the area then and decided that it would always be a part of my life.”
    Murphey’s Rocking 3M Amphitheater is the perfect backdrop for songs from his new release, “High Stakes: Cowboy Songs VII.”  The album is already being celebrated for its strong environmental message. On his new album, High Stakes: Cowboy Songs VII, Murphey pleads on the Australian cowboy song, “Campfire On The Road”  “We must never let ’em take this life away / Old stock routes belong to one and all / Drovers, dreamers all agree / Poets, Aborigines / We have a right to light a campfire on the road.”
    The lyric underscores the dramatic tone of Murphey’s return to his Texas-cowboy roots at a time when we are facing the rapid deterioration of our crowded world's most precious resources : Land and Water.  The song joins longtime favorites such as  “Wildfire,” “Carolina In The Pines,” “Cowboy Logic,” “Geronimo’s Cadillac” and many more.
    "This generation of the human family is witnessing the emergence of their home as a desert planet", says Murphey, a passionate lifelong rancher-poet. "Two-thirds of the Earth's land surface is grassland plain. Eighty percent of its soil is dying. This is due to a lack of grazing animals — cattle, sheep, buffalo, deer, elk, goats, even free-range chickens and pigs. We need vastly more split-hooved grazing animals that turn up the soil — managed by the world's stockmen and stockwomen —  to replicate the rotational-grazing habits of wild herds to restore grasslands for the creatures and life-forms that thrive there. 
    “As we develop cities and urban sprawl, we run off animals that cannot be replaced by technology,” he continued.  “You can't eat computer chips.”
    Best known for a genre busting career that includes topping the Pop, Country, Bluegrass and Western Music charts, High Stakes spotlights the singer’s philosophy of staying humble to his musical and traditional roots.  “It may sound like an oxymoron, but  ‘Cowboy Culture’ is real and relevant,” Murphey says. “I celebrate men and women who love Dirt, Grass and Water. Truth is, cowboys and cowgirls can save the planet.” 
    Murphey himself has been a long-time activist and outspoken supporter of caring for land and water. Murphey was inspired by the work of noted Zimbabwean Ecologist, Dr. Alan Savory, who was a consultant to his  ranching partnership with Holistic Grazing pioneer Bert Madera of Jal, New Mexico. 
    “Grasslands sequester carbon,” Murphey explains. “Too much carbon in the atmosphere instead of the grass and soil is the real cause of climate change. Ranchers around the world are fighting leaving ground bare and managed grazing is a key way to do that. Real environmentalists are the men and women who spend their days working the land responsibly to ensure its health for generations to come.”
    The message is so potent that when Murphey appeared at Earth Day Texas last year, the founder of the event, Trammel S. Crow, Jr. asked Murphey to become the Official Ambassador for the 2016 event.  With Murphey Western Institute, they created the Grazing Land Restoration Initiative.
    Situated in heart of the American West, The Rocking 3M Amphitheater opened in the summer of 2013. The stage stands against a backdrop of a quiet lake situated in the middle of The Rocky Mountains.   “I can literally walk to the back of the stage and throw in a line to fish,” Murphey laughs.  “I’ve not actually caught a fish during a performance, but there’s always hope.”
    In addition to a concert from Murphey guests to the Rocking 3M Amphitheater are treated to a chuckwagon style dinner featuring Southwestern food and ambiance.
    Located at 178 Bitter Creek Road, the Rockin’ 3M Amphitheater was part of the old Lazy H Guest Ranch in the 1920s and 1930s.  
    The open amphitheater allows the cool mountain air to float through, so guests are encouraged to bring blankets or a warm coat on most nights. “It’s the ‘open sky experience’ I’ve always loved,” Murphey said.  “This is what I’ve always wanted to do. This is a dream come true for me."
 

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