reviews & messages from my pals
April 20, 2011
Poem of the Week
Cowboys & Indians
magazine web site:
2010 Western Music Association DJ Playlists:
In the Top 10 Albums: Cowboys Are Like That
#5 Most-Played Artist: Ken Cook
2010 Academy of Western Artists Top Male Poet of the Year
Hello Mr. AWA Top Cowboy Poet Rhyming Metaphor Creative Guru
Brilliant Western Wordsmith. Ken, you are absolutely deserving of this
award. You're a great writer and reciter.
~ Doris Daley
are very deserving and have worked hard for this. We are only happy to
give you some recognition for all of your hard work.
~ Bobby Newton
Are Like That, as featured in
Rick Huff's Best of the West Reviews
In his commanding
style that tells the story first and the rhyme in proper time, Ken Cook
presents an exceptional new CD.
"Cowboys Are Like That" is one of Cook's original poems, but the
title very much presents the brogan for this collection to bed down in.
His lines fit just fine with excerpts from Buck Ramsey's epic "Grass,"
or Badger Clark's "From Town," or Ralph Coole's "The Ranch Up Yonder."
The crafted words from those noted poets and the increasingly sought
after Mr. Cook masterfully illustrate how "cowboys are like that!" But
like the very best of Cowboy Poetry will do, they extend beyond hoof,
horn and saddle to embrace more universal themes and truths.
In an enclosed cover letter, Ken provided some insight into the extra
effort he put into the creation and the rendering of this album. It
shows. If he hadn't done so before now, with Cowboys Are Like That, Ken
Cook has cemented his place among the modern "A-listers" of the genre.
2009 Lariat Laureate, recognized for
I just want to say
CONGRATULATIONS on winning the Lariat Laureate! "The Conversation" is a
deserving poem. Great work!
~ Mag Mawhinney
being named Lariat Laureate at CowboyPoetry.com. I’ve enjoyed the
winning poem many times since I first saw it. Besides being an
outstanding poem, the honor couldn’t go to a nicer guy.
~ Rod Miller
being Mr. Cowboy Poetry Lariat Laureate. Well deserved. In the
commonwealth, we would knight you for this. Or at the very least make
you the local parade marshal. Well done and bravo. You are a fine writer
and help raise the bar for all of us.
~ Doris Daley
Gonna Be A Cowboy, as featured in 2007 in
Rick Huff's Best of the West Reviews
Ken Cook is a relative newcomer on the Cowboy Poetry scene,
who has already impressed many…including Yvonne Hollenbeck, and lemme
tell ya she don’t impress easy!
On his most recent
CD, Cook shows himself to be not only a gifted writer but also a natural
interpreter. His voice runs from the animated delivery of the tale-tellin’
braggart to the measured intensity needed to tell of his “Grandpa’s
Spurs” being left to him and the history of what that meant. You do
tend to hang on his words, both because of the way they come at you and
the quality of their order. Sometimes Cook will sucker punch you good
with an ending that surprises to make a point as in “Vern’s Saddle Holds
The Memories” or “So Here’s How I’ve Been Raised” and humorously in
“Bring Her Back To The Home Range.” He’ll take on more complex rhyme
schemes than will some, as in “A Cowboy’s Advice To The Foreman.” There
are wistful portraits here like the CD’s title track and “Good Company,”
the fun of the tripped-up tinhorn buyer in “Diversification” and more to
To those who know,
the whole project will ring real as Grandpa’s rowels. Stick this one in
your deck. CDs: $12 postage paid from Ken Cook, 23154 Teal Lane,
Martin, South Dakota 57551, phone
(605) 685-6749, email
Ken is a master poet, a great entertainer and a real
~ Yvonne Hollenbeck, WMA & AWA
Award-winning Cowboy Poet
One of the most entertaining cowboy poets to come
down the pike in a while.
Mike Baxter, 1995 World Champion
Your audience hangs on every word because they often
times have been in the situation that you are speaking of, and now with
your poetry, can laugh about it, too.
Billy & Terry Jo Gibbons, Tri-State
Dad, We'll Rope Today,
in 2006 in
Around the Campfire
If you've never visited a ranch, or you
don't think you'll get to visit one in the near future, then you need to
pick up Dad, We'll Rope Today, Ken Cook's latest CD. And
by the time you're through listening to this string of cowboy poems,
you'll feel like you've not only visited a ranch but spent the day
working while you were there. I mean, this CD almost tires you out
-- in a good way. It's a compendium on a day in the life of a cowboy.
More often than not, it's a humorous presentation of how NOT to cowboy.
Ken will have you laughing when you first start out on your visit to the
ranch. Then he'll sober you up with some poetry that makes no bones
about his love and admiration for his calf-ropin' kids, the attitudes
that get a cowboy through the day, and the disaster that a cowboy can
suddenly meet during his day's work.
"Gone are the Days" is a wonderful tribute poem in which Ken expresses
his appreciation for those who have gone before and those who taught him
how to handle a rope. If you've ever been a parent, you'll not be able
to keep from smiling as you listen to the title cut. Remember the first
time you "gave in" and let your kids help? And the theme of the proud
parent continues as Ken presents "Bloodlines."
I think what I enjoy most about this CD, though, is the trip it takes me
on. I feel like I've spent the day riding with Ken by the time the last
poem has played. And I think that's what good cowboy poetry should be
about. Not just cowboys reciting poetry or poets writing poems about
cowboys -- but cowboys sharing their life experiences with me in such a
way that I can't wait to climb up on a horse and ride again. Even if
I've never sat a horse in my life! Ken Cook's Dad, We'll Rope
Today leaves you with exactly that feeling.
So put this CD on, lay back and close your eyes, and take in the noise
and smells and excitement of a day at the ranch. I promise Ken Cook
will make sure you have a good time.