Western folk music is a genre that has been around for centuries. It has its roots in traditional American folk music. The songs in this genre are characterized by their storytelling, use of acoustic instruments, and their connection to the Western United States. Here are some fun facts about Western folk music that you may not know:
Western folk music was heavily inspired by Mexican music
Western folk music has its roots in the Spanish and Mexican influences that were present in the Western United States. Mexican music, in particular, has had a significant impact on Western folk music. Many songs contain the use of Spanish lyrics, guitar, and other traditional Mexican instruments.
The cowboy songs of the Wild West were created by cattle drivers, cowboys, and other workers who spent long hours on the trail. These songs were often about life on the ranch or the open range and were sung around the campfire at night.
Western folk music has its hall of fame
The Western Music Association Hall of Fame is dedicated to honoring the best in Western folk music. The hall of fame has been inducting artists since 1989 and features a variety of categories, including performers, songwriters, and radio personalities.
The guitar is key
The guitar is a key instrument in Western folk music. Many famous Western folk musicians, such as Gene Autry and Roy Rogers, were also accomplished guitarists. The guitar’s versatility and portability made it the perfect instrument for cowboys. It was also an ideal instrument for workers who spent a lot of time on the trail.
A connection to the environmental movement
Many Western folk songs have been written about the beauty of the natural world and the importance of preserving it. Songs like Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land” and John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High” have become anthems for the environmental movement.
The Western folk music scene is still going strong
Despite its long history, country music is still alive and well today. The Western Music Association continues to recognize and celebrate the best in the genre, and many musicians continue to tour and record new music.
Western folk music has been used in countless movies and TV shows set in the Wild West. Famous examples include The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Bonanza and “The Lone Ranger.
Country music and the rodeo have a long-standing connection. Many Western folk musicians have performed at rodeos and other Western-themed events. Among the songs featuring the rodeo lifestyle are Rodeo Cowboy by Marty Robbins.
Country music has been used in a variety of advertising campaigns over the years. Perhaps the most famous example is the use of Gene Autry’s Back in the Saddle Again. It was used in a commercial for Marlboro cigarettes.
Country music inspired other forms of music
Western folk music has had a significant impact on other genres. They include country music, rock and roll, and even punk rock. Artists like Johnny Cash and Bruce Springsteen have cited Western folk music as an influence on their own music.