FEATURING: Henry Real Bird, Rodney Nelson, Sourdough Slim.
The title says it all! Good-natured jabs, artful nonsense, boasts so good you'd be a fool to not believe them... it may be winter, but the hot air emanating from this bunch will keep you toasty. Henry Real Bird delivers an entertaining ride through Crow Country, joining up with classic poet Rodney Nelson, who'd tell a joke as soon as draw a breath. To top it all off, they'll match wits with Sourdough Slim, a true Western character. Watch out for this raucous crew. They come off polite, but they're just cowboyin' around. Before you know it, you'll be sucked in to an evening of bravado, balderdash and... well, you-know-what. Best check your gullibility at the door.
Hosted by Yvonne Hollenbeck.
From the 35th National Cowboy Poetry Gathering.
Henry Real Bird
Untitled poems and songs
"Take My Boots Off When I Die"
"Barnacle Bill the Sailor" (words by Carson Robison + music by Frank Luther)
"In Old Winnemucca"
"The Big Corral" (words by Romaine Lowdermilk + music from old gospel song)
Over the Top with a Rope Trick and a Yodel
"I Don't" (poem his mother taught him)
"Progressing as a Poet"
"Slim and Satan"
"Not Enough Snuff"
"Good, Clean Fun"
title unknown (poem by Chuck Murphy)
Henry Real Bird
Henry Real Bird, a member of the Apsáalooke (Crow) Nation, grew up ranching on the battlegrounds of the Little Bighorn. He still lives on the Crow Reservation in Montana, saying “this is it, I’m not going anywhere.” A former rodeo cowboy and bronc rider, now a renowned poet, horses picture large in Henry's creative work–he still touches and cares for horses every day. In his continual search for extremes, he raises bucking horses with his daughter and also cares for gentle horses that people can ride safely. A writing mentor for youth, a Crow speaker, and a self-proclaimed “old-timer,” Henry writes, takes care of horses and grandkids, and preserves language and thoughts that have been here a long time.
Rodney Nelson and his wife, Teri, live at Sims, North Dakota, population 2, a suburb of Almont. Despite advancing age and declining health, Rodney continues to make his living rodeoing, which has caused him to enjoy a low standard of living. His rodeo career has been in a steady decline for most of his life, going from riding saddle broncs to now competing in senior breakaway roping, which his daughter says is a girls’ event for old men. He finds it necessary to supplement his rodeo income by raising a few cattle, breaking a few horses, working as a brand inspector, writing a column “Up Sims Creek” for Farm and Ranch Guide, freeze-branding cattle around North Dakota in the coldest winter months, and entertaining banquet crowds with his brand of rural humor. He died in 2020.
Sourdough Slim, aka Rick Crowder, is a hoot to say the least. Sourdough hails from California’s gold country and is the recipient of the Academy of Western Artists’ Yodeler of the Year Award. Since 1988, he has gained national recognition performing at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York. This savvy performer has the rare gift for transporting audiences to a whimsical world where vaudevillian camp incorporates cowboy lore. His fast-paced show combines song, yodeling, humor, accordion, guitar, ukulele, and harmonica, with a keen knowledge of traditional western repertoire.
Filmed in front of a live audience at the Western Folklife Center's G Three Bar Theater on Jan. 31, 2019.
Made possible by the multitude of staff, artists, volunteers, and community members working behind the scenes to make this show happen.
Brought to you by the Western Folklife Center, using story and cultural expression to connect the American West to the world.