Likeable nation artist Curley Fletcher wouldn’t find very much distinction in his nickname, as nation and bluegrass music appears to be full of players named Curly, almost like strands of hair on to the floor of the barbershop. However in composing the traditional cowboy ballad “The Strawberry Roan” — in fact, it really is a equine ballad, the cowboy within the tale is a second personality — Fletcher certainly does stick out from the group, having produce something almost every songwriter wish to. The tune has remained a favorite choice being a cover tune as different years of nation & western arrive and go, signifying it really is something of the classic item along with a sure-fire group pleaser every time within a live present setting. The tune was compiled by Fletcher in 1915 and it wasn’t his initial tune in regards to a roan, nor his last. “Ridge Working Roan” can be another of his aroan-ymous amounts, and is recognized as the comic sister towards the sentimental roan of strawberry. He had written on other topics, aswell, like other forms of horses, for example. There’s “Traveling Outlaw Mustang,” still a thrilling topic to get a hot nation gal such as for example Lacy J. Dalton on the close from the 20th hundred years. The songwriter himself certainly experienced the benefits that opt for having created such well-accepted materials in a favorite genre. Years after “The Strawberry Roan” was created, Fletcher was knee-deep within the Hollywood way of living that swirled around the favorite cowboy or Traditional western movie. Think about this archive information item in regards to a historical resort: “The Kittie Lee Inn was built-in 1924 and was regarded as the elevation of extravagance. During Hollywood’s heyday of filming films within the Large Sierra, the vast majority of the great celebrities stayed at onetime or another: Will Rogers, Randolph Scott, Hopalong Cassidy, Cary Give, John Wayne, Bing Crosby, Curley Fletcher, and Pat O’Brien are simply some of the titles within the old visitor register….” Well, well, well, go through the organization our friend Fletcher was keeping. Pretty good for a man who sounded like he spent the majority of his period with horses, judging from his lyrics. Evidently he spent lots of time dropping off them aswell in his start like a rodeo rider, producing a amount of his lifestyle where he was barely living it up with celebrities. It had been 1931 when he initial approached a set of LA music web publishers and songwriters, Nat Vincent and Fred Howard, nicknamed the Content Chappies, about posting his poem “The Strawberry Roan” being a tune. Within an interview years afterwards, Vincent recalled the cowboy vocalist as being virtually destitute, crippled from horseback riding mishaps and pleading for two hundred cash to manage. Besides the large number of cover variations, “The Strawberry Roan” is usually reprinted in its initial form like a poem in Traditional western anthologies like the Big Roundup. Fletcher’s masterpieces come across superbly with or without music which is section of an argument creating much credit to the songwriter for financing dignity to a lot of cowpoke-orientated performances just through the effectiveness of his materials. “The singer not really the track” is usually something of the truism with regards to the connection between performers and songwriters, however in the delicately kitschy globe of cowboy music one can’t worth too highly an extremely well-written verse as well as the imagery it includes. The writings of Fletcher in the beginning helped provide sustenance to the complete Roy Rogers and Gene Autry masses, but from there is also the same as a complete chili pot for most additional brands of nation & traditional western rustlers. The oh-so-sincere, windswept design of nation singers such as for example Jim Ringer, Mary McCaslin, or Michael Martin Murphey possess all discovered “The Strawberry Roan” a determining area of the repertoire and even, easier to sit down through than their initial materials. Among the great nation vocalist storytellers, Marty Robbins, produced regular usage of Fletcher’s tunes, as possess honky tonk performers such as for example Dick Curless. The ’60s folk revival group even got within the work, with — shock, surprise — documenting artists such as for example Alan Lomax and Ed McCurdy endeavoring to state authorship from the tune. In the region of cover variations that rank highest for obscurity in addition to brilliance, the Fletcher recordings by Local American folksinger Pete LaFarge are worthy of checking out.