Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Western country revival: White Buffalo reigns.

Ian Munsick’s Rise in Country Music: A Reflection of Western Culture and Authenticity

Country artist Ian Munsick is making waves in the music industry not only because of his talent but also because of his deep commitment to family-defined, authentically rural, and empathetic take on country music. His second album entitled “White Buffalo” pays homage to his roots as a Westerner with an authentic connection to the land, which he believes inspires and influences his music.

Dream Gig at Cheyenne’s Frontier Days Rodeo

Born and raised in Sheridan, Wyoming, Munsick is a true Westerner with a deep love for cattle, canyons, coyotes, horses, prairies, and mountains. He dreams of a day when he headlines the 19,000-seat stadium at the state capitol Cheyenne’s annual, 10-day long Frontier Days Rodeo, which is five hours away from Sheridan. The rodeo is an important event that showcases the Western way of life and Munsick is eager to play a significant role in it.

Mainstream Pop Cultural Moment for the American West

With the Paramount+ television program “Yellowstone” having a fifth-season premiere in 2023 that grew 52 percent year-over-year with 12.1 million live-plus-same-day viewers, the American West – country music’s broadest geographical fanbase region – is having a mainstream pop cultural moment. For Munsick, Western music derives its unique inspiration from the land that defines it. How that geography defines Western culture and refines how various aesthetics of mainstream country music are redefining pop culture is of great importance to him.

Long Live Cowgirls

Munsick has co-written 18 tracks on his “White Buffalo” album, and one of those is “Long Live Cowgirls,” a Western waltz that he wrote with Aby Gutierrez and Phil O’Donnell. The song sounds like a tale older than time, as it tells a story of the essential role that cowgirls played in developing the Western spirit and culture. For Munsick, becoming a husband and father in recent years has opened new perspectives to the timelessness of life and love, which he reflects in his music.

Homage to his Two-Year-Old Son, Crawford

The album’s current single is “Little Man,” a song that pays homage to Munsick’s two-year-old son, Crawford. “Snow cones, Tonka trucks, and sleepless nights have taken over my life, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m a better man because of my little man,” Munsick says. The song’s co-writers, Adam James and Ben Simonetti, both fathers to young boys, reflected their unique parenting experiences in the music.

Honoring Native American Culture

Munsick’s album title, “White Buffalo,” honors the prairie-dwelling Crow, Northern Cheyenne, and Sioux Indians. Native Americans comprise roughly three percent of America’s population, with approximately 75 percent of that population dwelling west of the Mississippi River. The white buffalo is a sacred symbol for the Plains tribes, symbolizing prosperity and rebirth. Munsick’s father – rancher, musician, and teacher Dave – has long associated with the various Native American tribes of the region through his classroom work and livestock trading. Munsick believes that providing a complete reflection of the breadth and depth of how his roots inspired him as a musician required “shining a light on the beauty and truth of Native American culture.”

Entertaining Style and Commitment to Authenticity

Munsick has a touring schedule that feels like an endless barnstorming run of 3,000-15,000-seat venues nationwide, where he entertains audiences with a LeDoux-style drive for smile-inducing entertainment. His style reflects authenticity, but with a modern twist, that inspires people to escape the hustle and bustle of modern life. Munsick believes that being a cowboy is trendy right now, but the actuality of living that life isn’t. In his music, Munsick states that more than anything, the Earth and its land are magical and beautiful.

Conclusion

Ian Munsick’s rise in country music is not just tied to his talent showcased on his sophomore album “White Buffalo.” Instead, it is a reflection of Western culture that defines the land and the people who inhabit it. Munsick’s deep connection to his roots, his commitment to authenticity, and his entertaining style make him a standout artist who inspires people to escape from the challenges of modern life and appreciate the beauty of the natural world.

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