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Making The Film

Why The Cowboy Sings

Film by Hal Cannon, Taki Telonidis
Produced by Hal Cannon and Taki Telonidis, Executive Producers: Scott Chaffin, John Howe, Elizabeth Searles, A Western Folklife Center Film produced in association wit KUED
Cinematographer: Douglas Monroe, Bill Brussard, Taki Telonidis, Hal Cannon, Nancy Green
Sound: William Montoya
Editing: Bill Lauer with Taki Telonidis
Copyright: Western Folklife Center 2002
58 minutes, Color
Original format: DV Mini, 2002
More Film Facts
Home streaming only. For other permissions apply to Hal Cannon, Taki Telonidis or to the distributor, Western Folklife Center.


Preview one minute trailer - Comment on film


The cowboy's job has always been dangerous, lonely, dusty, gory and low-paying. So why do cowboys make music, and why do they need to tell their story? Why the Cowboy Sings is a journey across the open West to explore this unique genre of folk art.

Co-producer Hal Cannon has been chasing this question for 30 years. He is a founder of the Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada and has played cowboy music in a traditional band since the early 1970s. In this journey he travels to four ranches, in the middle of winter, to visit cowboys during a season when they have more time to sing.

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