Ranchers recently gathered in Miles City for the Montana Stockgrowers Association’s (MSGA) mid-year meeting.
The focus was to set interim policy for the association. The event also served as a networking opportunity for MSGA members.
When the business meetings wrapped up, ranchers and residents gathered at the Ag Advancement Center on the campus Miles Community College for a special country music concert.
Attendees were entertained and inspired by country music singer, Moe Bandy.
With 10 number one hits, 40 top ten hits, 66 chart hits along with songs that embody the American cowboy, Moe Bandy can trace it all back to growing up on a ranch near San Antonio, Texas.
“I was raised on the ranch,” said Bandy. “Working cattle, doing all the stuff that we did, building fences. I’ve been around it all my life.”
In addition to his connection to ranching, Bandy’s family is well known in the rodeo arena.
“My whole family loves the sport of rodeo,” explained Bandy. “My dad had Bandy’s Arena and we had bull riding there.”
“My younger brother Mike went to the National Finals Rodeo seven times in the bull riding. I rode bulls and bareback horse some. But, we had big old oak tree out there in the back and I set up my little band and I played and made music.”
As the nation’s farmers or ranchers continue to experience a depressed agriculture economy, Moe Bandy said he wanted to bring joy to the men and women who feed the world.
“The minute I found out that we were doing this I was excited because I was raised around cattle and livestock,” Bandy gleamed. “The cowboys and cowgirls are my friends.”
“It’s my kind of deal. It just falls right into what I do. I love to entertain. Music can make people get out of their troubles sometimes and concentrate in a different area. So, I love it.”
Bandy explained that he knows ranchers have a lot on their minds and hoped he could take their minds off what troubles them.
“I know that it is a rough time right now in agriculture,” Bandy said. “Tonight, when we do our show I’ll just be in front of my people and I hope that whatever problems they have I hope we can make them happy.
With a chuckle, Bandy added that “by the way, I’ve ridden on John Deere tractors for many hours, so I know what they are doing.”
Pertaining to the music business, Moe bandy had this advice for aspiring country singers.
“Just when you’re about ready to give up, hang in there,” Bandy shared. “Because usually, that’s when something’s going to happen. And you just got to stay at it.”
“You must get to Nashville nowadays. You just practically got to get in there. Stay with it, believe in yourself. Write songs. Writing is very good. And learn instruments. These kids now, they play every instrument on the stage. But believe in yourself, yeah.”
Moe Bandy added he could share that same advice with farmers and ranchers.
“Exactly same thing,” said Bandy. “You know, a lot of times when you’re having troubles and your crops are not coming in right and everything else you just don’t know what to do at times. A lot of times they’ll turn around, hopefully.
The Moe Bandy concert was one of many events held to celebrate the Montana Stockgrowers Association formation which took place in Miles City 135 years ago.
-Lane Nordlund reporting for MTN News