The singin' Cowboy: Ken Overcast

Ken Overcast

Who is Ken Overcast?

Ken Overcast is the real deal. In this day and age of plastic throwaway everything, to find someone that is really genuine is a treat indeed.

While many in the performing arts tend towards honing an act that is saleable, Ken strives very diligently to just be himself. His music, writing, and public performances are characterized by a down home connection that is indeed rare.

He's a third generation Montanan, and is truly making a mark on America's entertainment. Both Ken's recording and writing have been prolific, with his book Yesterday's Yarns published in the spring of 2003, and at least one new recording project in the mill constantly. 2002 also saw the introduction of a syndicated radio program, "The Cowboy Show" with Ken Overcast.

Born into a ranching family, he was raised in northern Montana on a section of the Milk River known as "Paradise Valley." He literally grew up on a horse, and attended a rural school with three classmates. He and his wife Dawn were childhood sweethearts, and run a commercial cow/calf operation on Lodge Creek, as well as entertaining audiences all over the West. Their ranch is located within fifteen miles of where 100 years of both sides of their family have made their homes. Dawn's only complaint is that, "He's always running off somewhere to play that darned guitar, and leaving me home to do all the work."

Ken has been teamed with Nashville Producer, Russ Ragsdale for many years, and together they have seven CD recordings under their belts. National recognition was just a matter of time. Besides a host of nominations, Ken was crowned the Western Music Association "Yodeler of the Year", garnered a first round Grammy nomination for his Album "Prairie Poetry", and was awarded the coveted "Will Rogers Award" by the "Academy of Western Artists".
Ken Overcast: Montana Cowboy
Read more about Ken and his recordings at

Ken Overcast:    CD "Montana Cowboy"
Ken Overcast - Bear Valley Records
True West Magazine 2003 Cowboy CD of the Year!

This is Ken's latest, and probably best yet. It is all acoustic and all cowboy. It includes some old favorites as well as a few brand new ones. There is even a little yodelin'. You'll love it.

  • Cold, Broke, and Hungry
    Ken Overcast 1999 Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • Ride Cowboy Ride
    Jeff Streeby/Ken Overcast 1999 Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • Blizzard
    Harlan Howard/Red River Songs, Inc., BMI
  • Workin' Cowboy
    Ken Overcast 1998 Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • Montana Lullaby
    Wylie Gustafson/Ken Overcast / Two Medicine Music/Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • Back in the Saddle
    Gene Autry/Ray Whitley / Gene Autry's Western Music Publishing, Inc., ASCAP
  • When The Work's All Done This Fall
    Traditional/Arr. 1999 Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • What's It Take To Make A Cowboy Cry
    Ken Overcast 1999 Bear Valley Music, BMI
  • Cattle Call
    Tex Owens/ Forster Music Publishers, Inc., BMI
  • Mr. Shorty
    Martin J. Robinson/Mariposa Music, BMI
  • Ridin' Down the Canyon
    Gene Autry/Smiley Burnette / Gene Autry's Western Music Publishing, Inc., ASCAP
At you can get more information about Ken Overcast's cds... and even some sound clips!

Ken Overcast: hear The Cowboy Show

The Cowboy Show with Ken Overcast is a nationally syndicated one-hour program, broadcast weekly. The show features current Cowboy music, interviews with artists and old-time cowboys, and a bit of storytelling and poetry. Over 25 active affiliates picked up the show within its first six months. Ken says

"We're very proud of the response that we've received,
and look forward to introducing the world to cowboy culture."

You can view the playlists and the list of affiliates at Ken Overcast's site. Submissions (in CD format only) are welcome for consideration: The Cowboy Show; PO Box 1542, Chinook, MT 59523.

Read a review of his recent book, Yesterday's Yarns: Real Tales from the Real West, right here:

Ken Overcast

Review by Jeff Streeby:

The old saying goes: "The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man." ... Well, the inside of this book may be even better than that.

This collection of humorous anecdotes, little histories, little mysteries, regional folklore, cowboy philosophy, and intimate glimpses into family life on the Northern Ranges is a rewarding cultural tour of the Highline region of Montana.

Ken Overcast himself is the real deal. A real cowboy from a real ranch family in one of the least hospitable agricultural environments in the world, his is the voice of the real West. Unquenchably optimistic, friendly, and as familiar and reassuring as Grandma's oatmeal cookies, his warmly conversational style immediately involves the reader in circumstances sometimes quirky, sometimes profound and with characters who are wise or good or nave or comically villainous or deadly as a prairie rattlesnake.

These little stories cover just about every topic you could name, from the best excuse ever for being two hours late for school, to an unsolved murder mystery, to advice on what to do if you drop your favorite shovel into the irrigation ditch and then you spot your wife swathing hay in a bikini less than a quarter mile away.

No matter whom you are and no matter where you are, you will find yourself at home with Ken. His delightful stories take you far away from your ordinary day-to-day experiences. He puts you, willing or no, onto the vast Montana ranges or high among the peaks of the Bearpaw Mountains and among people you wish you could know.

Yesterday's Yarns: Real Tales from the Real West
by Ken Overcast
illustrated by Ben Crane
Available from
Bear Valley Press
PO Box 1542
Chinook, MT 59523

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