(42:51:00; 32.9MB; C84-10 & C84-11)
Cattle ranching has a nearly 500-year-old tradition in the state of Florida.
Welcome back to the Florida Folklife Collection Podcast series from the State Library and Archives of Florida.
Cattle ranching has a nearly 500-year-old tradition in the state of Florida dating back to 1521 when Spanish explorer Juan Ponce De Leon first introduced cattle to North America. That tradition is highlighted in a new exhibit at the Museum of Florida History titled Florida Cattle Ranching: Five Centuries of Tradition and in a new photo exhibit found in the Florida Photographic Collection pages here on the Florida Memory Web site. Where you’ll find cowboys working cattle you’ll also hear cowboy songs. Few individuals knew cowboy ballads and western music as well Cowboy Jim Bob Tinsley, the subject of this month’s podcast.
Jim Bob Tinsley a resident of Ocala, Florida, was originally of North Carolina, where he was born August 12, 1921. During his life he shared his knowledge of cowboy songs in a variety of occupations. He was a working cowboy in Florida and Arizona, an aerial photographer in the Navy during World War II, an educator and storyteller, and a radio host and performer. Tinsley shared the stage with the likes of Gene Autry, Smiley Burnette, and Roy Rogers. He was an actor and writer, whose scholarly books He Was Singin’ This Song and For a Cowboy Has to Sing, both published by the University of Central Florida Press, remain important pieces of literature on cowboy and western music. He was a recipient of the Western Heritage Wrangler Award from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame, the National Radio Heritage Association’s Pioneer Award, a Will Rogers Lifetime Achievement Award, and was inducted into Western Music Association Hall of Fame in 1999.
This month’s podcast features Jim Bob Tinsley performing before a small rapt audience at the Ocala Public Library in March of 1984. He discusses the purpose of cowboy songs, the history of the pieces he performs, the meaning of various cowboy terminologies, and stories from his career in music. Let’s saddle up for a short ride through the history of cowboy songs with Jim Bob Tinsley.
Thanks for listening.