On Saturday, September 1, 2012 at 7 p.m., The Ozark Folk Center will present a Celebrity Concert with Michael Martin Murphey as part of the Tribute to Grandpa Jones Weekend.
Michael Martin Murphey started gaining in popularity in the 1970’s with hits like ‘Wildfire’, ‘Carolina in the Pines’ and ‘Wild Bird’, and recently has been called Amerca’s #1 Cowboy Singer.
Michael Martin Murphey’s album, TALL GRASS & COOL WATER, Cowboy Songs Volume 6 / Buckaroo Bluegrass 3 hit #1 this January on the Top 20 Western Music Albums Chart of the Western Music Association. Previously, the album hit #4 on Billboard’s Top 10 Bluegrass Album Chart.
Murphey, the “singing cowboy poet”, is not only the number one, best-selling singer/songwriter of American Cowboy Music; he’s one of the world’s most respected singer/songwriters in the Pop and Country-western field.
In 1970, Murphey moved back to Texas from California and settled in Austin. Here, he founded a “Texas music scene” that became world famous. Though others like Willie Nelson and Jerry Jeff Walker followed in his footsteps, Murphey was the first singer/songwriter of this Austin scene to be signed to a major record label while operating out of Austin, Texas. When Willie Nelson visited one of Murphey’s performances in Austin, he got rid of his suit and tie, grew long hair and a beard like Murphey’s and played the Armadillo World Headquarters as Murphey’s opening act.
In 1972, A&M released the debut album by Murphey entitled Geronimo’s Cadillac. The first album was produced by Bob Johnston (who discovered Murphy at his old coffee house stomping grounds, the Rubiayat in Dallas, Texas) who also produced Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Simon and Garfunkel and Leonard Cohen. This made the critical world pay attention to Murphey as a serious songwriter. Some people called his music Progressive Country, some called it Redneck Rock and some called it Outlaw Music. The fact is no one could quite figure out exactly what to call it. They were struggling with trying to label a songwriter who could morph from the blues to country to pop ballad, rock and roll, bluegrass, western-swing, cowboy music and jazz.
In May, 1975, Murphey’s story song, “Wildfire” reached number 1 on the radio and records charts, number 3 on Billboard’s Pop chart and number 1 on all Adult Contemporary Charts, giving the artist vast commercial exposure. Just some of Murphey’s albums include “Swans Against the Sun”, Michael Martin Murphey”, “River of Time”, “Cowboy Songs”. “Blue Sky Night Thunder” and “will The Circle Be Unbroken”. His three “Cowboy Christmas” albums concept became a trademarked touring show and musical concept for him. The tour now spans 40 cities per holiday season.
Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the show starts at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $25.00. Call 870-269-3851 to purchase tickets.