Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hey, buckaroos ...

... Yippee-ky-yo-ky-yay-ky-yeehah!

I saw Wally McRae when I was at the Cowboy Poetry Gathering back in 2005 and chatted with Tom Russell. Could have seen Ian, I suspect, but by then I had plenty of material and was getting ready to mosey on. Here, once more, is the piece I wrote: There's poetry in them thar cowboys.

And here is Ian Tyson (and a painting by Charlie Russell):


  1. Okay, help me fill in the blank space. I remember Ian and Sylvia performing four decades ago, and I presume Ian Tyson is the same fellow. Of course, I could be wrong about the name. In any event, what happened to Sylvia?

  2. One and the same - though it's a bad idea to bring the subject with Ian. Sylvia, I believe, went on to host a show on Canadian TV. Oh, and the Judy Collins hit "Someday Soon" was penned by Ian.

  3. Okay, so if I ever run into Ian Tyson, Sylvia is that third-rail subject that I should never touch. Got it. I remember "discovering" Ian and Sylvia in a dingy cabaret in Greenwich Village in the summer of '64. I had gone to the Village to get away from everything that seemed oppressive and unacceptable at home in western Pennsylvania, and I thought I had died and gone to heaven when I heard the two Canadians perform. The next morning I made a beeline to the record store and bought their LP, which I then proceeded to play hundreds of times. Now it sits in a milkcrate among hundreds of other vinyl discs. Funny, isn't it, how the past has a way of making encore performances and forcing us to remember long, long ago. The bottom line is this: Thanks for sharing the Tyson clip. I had no idea he was still performing.

  4. Tyson started out as a rodeo performer - and has the stiff walk to prove it. I think he met Sylvia while recovering from a rodeo injury.
    When I was covering the Cowboy Poetry Gathering it was explained that you never called the sort of music he did Country & Western. There was Country, and there was Western. Ian was 100 percent Western.
    The Elko event is absolutely wonderful, I might add. I must go again sometime.

  5. Actually, R.T., the entire subjekk of dames remains off-limit when it comes to Tyson (a.k.a. Prima Diva). Women invariably leave him in the dust-ups he creates; and, then, for good measure, when (not if) they do, he additionally annihilates them, too. Not good to his women, not by a country snarl. Love the guy's music; wouldn't go near his heart if it were handed to me on a ten-foot silver platter (of between-tune chatter).

    Sylvia, BTW, went on to form part of a quartet called, oddly enough, Quartette :). Scooped a few Junos, in fact. One of my BFFs, Colleen Peterson (who died of breast cancer at an obscenely young age), wrote much of its original material; and, particularly, one song for astonishedly grateful me called, appropriately, "Code Of The West."

    Ah, Frank, I do love that clip; but, when I think of that era and primo tunos? "Summer Wages" or "BLue Wing" in a classic fantastic duel. Heart. Soul. Swing 'n' sting. (Don't cry; don't soar; don't be cruel.)

    Thanks for sharing and caring.

    I remember one time we discussed Caitlin Hanford, I think it might have been? Oh, wait a min; mebbe it was Cindy Church? Yeah, that's the Sin D. Thicket :).