2018 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering
January 31-February 3, 2018
Elko Convention Center Auditorium
Wednesday, January 31
Best of the West
7:00pm – 8:30pm
Mixing glitz and grit, this mighty Wednesday night music extravaganza will put you in the Gathering spirit. California crooner Adrian Buckaroogirl, Montana maestros Wylie & The Wild West and Nashville legends Riders In The Sky take the stage to yodel, swing and waltz across Wednesday with you. Hosted by Charlie Seemann.
Sponsored by Blach Distributing, LLC.
Thursday, February 1
9:15am – 10:30am
Every year, the keynote address sets the tone for the Gathering, featuring speakers whose words and work embody the substance and creativity of living life in the American West. This year, the keynote will be by ordinary people doing extraordinary things, people whose grit, ingenuity and creativity are helping us all rethink how to "make it" in today's West: Eric Trigg, Emily Nielsen and Nephi Craig. Read more.
Members' Show #1, Breaking Up Winter
12:00pm – 1:30pm
Cowboy Celtic brings a Canadian chinook kick-start to this show of upbeat, warm selections of poetry and music. Join winter veterans Yvonne Hollenbeck, Rodney Nelson and Wylie & The Wild West to chip away your snow-bound blues. Hosted by DW Groethe. (Still photo by Jessica Brandi Lifland.)
Bizkaia, Boise and Beyond
6:00pm – 7:30pm
From Basque country to buckaroo country comes an evening of surprises. Join champion bertsolariak from both sides of the pond as they engage in the Basque art of improvised, melodic poetry-sparring. Enjoy verse and stories that connect buckaroos to Argentine Basque gauchos to Basque-American ranchers. And, experience the irresistible force of music and dance that spans all these worlds. Gure etxera datorrena, bere etxean dago! Ardi Baltza, Ryan Bell, Adrian Buckaroogirl, Jean Flesher and Amerikanuak, Martin Goicoechea, Jesus Goñi, Oihana Iguaran, Maialen Lujanbio, Mercedes Mendive & Melodikoa, the Ariñak Dancers, and David Romtvedt & Caitlin Belem. Hosted by Kate Camino.
Sponsored by Barrick Gold of North America
Friday, February 2
Members' Show #2, The Ponies: A Celebration of the Horse
11:00am – 12:30pm
Drawing on decades of cowboying, apprenticing with revered horsemen, and leading horsemanship clinics, Mike Beck's experience with horses runs deep, as does his musical repertoire. Mike weaves together original songs and selections from the likes of Ian Tyson and Michael Martin Murphey in this story-filled musical tribute to every cowboy's trustiest companion (cowdogs excluded). Hosted by Annie Hatch.
Fiddles are the feature of this show with Brian Farrow (duo partner with Dom Flemons), Joseph Hertz (with Cowboy Celtic), Woody Paul (with Riders In The Sky), Caitlin Belem Romtvedt and Joel Savoy (with Caleb Klauder Country Band). Hosted by Charlie Seemann.
The Old Ones: Remembering Our Roots
6:00pm - 7:30pm
Remembering our roots—classic poems and songs from the old days shed special light on the work of beloved poets Bruce Kiskaddon and Henry Herbert Knibbs. Amy Hale Auker, Andy Hedges, Waddie Mitchell and Randy Rieman bring their favorites to the stage under the direction of DW Groethe, with musical interludes by Pipp Gillette. A primer for newcomers to cowboy poetry and a treat for those who savor timeless stories and fine verse. Hosted by DW Groethe.
Sponsored by NV Energy
Who You Callin' Americana?
8:00pm – 9:30pm
In true buckaroo fashion, Mike Beck and family trio Muzzie, Willy & Cody Braun play music that has Western roots with individual style. Beck's virtuosic guitar playing and seasoned songwriting will take you "way out West," while Idaho natives and former Gathering young bucks, Cody and Willy Braun and their father Muzzie Braun bring a grounded sensibility and rock-and-roll edge to their country convictions. Their sounds may span genres, but all these fellows are cowboy at heart. Hosted by Hal Cannon. (Still photo by Jessica Brandi Lifland.)
Sponsored by the Elko Convention & Visitors Authority
Saturday, February 3
Come-A Tai Yai Yippee on the Old Chisholm Trail
11:00am – 12:15pm
Oh, come along boys and listen to Murph's tale, about buckaroos and drovers on the old Chisholm Trail. Gather 'round cowboys and cowgirls, as Michael Martin Murphey explores the musical legacy of the 150-year-old Chisholm Trail and its branches into the buckaroo West. Guaranteed to be a far-out musical journey down the trail on the proverbial ten-dollar horse and forty-dollar saddle. Hosted by William Matthews.
Sponsored by KNPB Channel 5 Public Broadcasting
The Art of Harmony
Harmony singing with Caleb Klauder and Reeb Willms of the Caleb Klauder Country Band, David Romtvedt and Caitlin Belem Romtvedt and Riders In the Sky. Hosted by Hal Cannon.
Ranch Family Show
3:00pm – 4:15pm
In a show especially created for ranch families, this year we celebrate musical families. Caleb Klauder and Reeb Willms delight with their classic duo vocals and instrumentals. Young poet and musical powerhouse Brigid Reedy entertains with her father John and her brother Johnny "Guitar." Rita Hosking and Sean Feder sing of rural places and spirit. And, in the family spirit of the Gathering, we honor this year's scholarship recipients and invite a couple of them on stage to share a poem or two. Hosted by Jon and Mackie Griggs.
Riders in the Sky: 40 Years on the Trail
8:00pm – 9:30pm
A physicist, a wildlife manager and a music historian walk into a theater. . .it's not the start of a joke, it's the origin story of "America's favorite cowboys," Riders In The Sky. Ranger Doug, Too Slim, Woody Paul and Joey the CowPolka King will share stories and give insight into the secrets of keeping a band together for over 40 years and having fun doing it (Hint: separate hotel rooms!). Brigid Reedy opens the show. Hosted by Lori Gilbert.
Sponsored by Newmont Mining Corporation