By Gary Voorhies
- CMA Close
Up News Service
Photographer: Clay Patrick
a boy, Troy Coleman (Cowboy
Troy) didn't realize he was listening to Country Music. "I
just knew it was what my parents listened to before they went to
work in the morning," he said.
was back in Fort Worth, Texas where his dad took him to rodeos
and stock shows and exposed him to musical favorites including
Charlie Daniels, Willie Nelson, Jerry Reed and Kenny Rogers.
Cowboy Troy's teen years arrived, and with them a new influence:
the rap and hip hop music he heard on MTV.
where Run-DMC came in," he said. Then, as a freshman
psychology major at the University of Texas in Austin, came
another shift when a friend lent him a George Strait CD. "I
was blown away," he recalled. "I remember telling
myself that this is what I need to be listening to."
he listened to all of it - "the Country, the hip hop, the
rap, even heavy metal" - and assimilated it all into his
own style. He worked up a few stock raps to do at Country dance
clubs, where patrons began to ask club DJs about the
6-foot-5-inch rhymer in the cowboy hat and western shirt
everyone quickly came to know as "Cowboy Troy."
Troy began making trips to Nashville and bringing music to
friend John Rich of Big & Rich, whom he first met in a
Dallas club in 1993. He became a regular at gatherings of Rich's
newly formed group of like-minded friends, "MuzikMafia,"
and performed on Horse of a Different Color, the now
double-Platinum 2004 debut album by Big & Rich. Cowboy Troy
ended up going on tour with them and Tim McGraw and a record
deal of his own soon followed.
result is Loco Motive, the first release from
MuzikMafia's Raybaw Records, an imprint of Warner Bros. Records
Nashville. The album, featuring singles "I Play Chicken
With The Train," and "If You Don't Wanna Love
Me," hit streets May 17 and debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard
Country Albums chart. Cowboy Troy's interest in cultural and
musical diversity is reflected on the album with raps in
English, Spanish, German, French, Japanese, Russian and Mandarin
Troy is currently on the "Dueces Wild Tour" through
Oct. 30 with CMA Awards Host Brooks & Dunn, plus Big
& Rich and the Warren Brothers.
HIS OWN WORDS:
are your musical heroes?
"Charlie Daniels, Jerry Reed and Metallica."
Which song would you like to cover?
"'Enter Sandman' by Metallica."
What CD is on your stereo?
"Dwight Yoakam's Blame the Vain."
What actor would portray you in a biopic about your life?
What moment in your life would you relive if you could?
"Fifth grade spelling bee ... I misspelled
What song do you wish you had written?
"'In America,' written and performed by Charlie
Who is your dream duet partner?
"Gretchen Wilson or Gwen Stefani."
If you wrote an autobiography, what would the title be?
"The Life & Times of a Native Texan."
When they look back on your life in 50 years, what do you hope
people say about you?
the Web: www.cowboytroy.com
2005 CMA Close Up News Service / Country Music Association, Inc.
Clay Patrick McBride
of Raybaw Records.