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poster for event

When

Occurs on Wednesday October 7 2020

Approximate running time: 2 hours

Venue

Key City Theatre
20 14th Ave North
Cranbrook BC V1C 6H4

Performance Notes

× Wednesday October 7, 2020 at 7:00 pm
Tickets: $52.50 Regular | $27.50 Youth
Raising funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities BC


SONS OF THE PIONEERS RETURN TO CRANBROOK WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 7, 2020
“No other group had as profound an effect on the history of Western music.” — Ranger Doug of Riders in the Sky


The Sons of the Pioneers are the gold standard for Western music, delivering thrilling harmonies, iconic yodeling, and poetic images of the West. Signature songs like “Cool Water,” “Tumbling Tumbleweeds,” and “Ghost Riders in the Sky,” forever rooted in Western lore, are stirring new audiences of all ages. Both “Tumbleweeds” and “Cool Water” have been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.


The group’s current lineup is Tommy Nallie (lead guitar, vocals), Ken Lattimore (vocals, fiddle), Roy (Dusty) Rogers, Jr., (vocals), John Fullerton (vocals, rhythm guitar), Paul Elliott (fiddle), and Chuck Ervin (bass, vocals). Last year, the Pioneers released their first album in eight years, “85 Years of Harmony,” to hungry audiences and wide acclaim.
In the early 1930s, Winnipeg-born Bob Nolan joined up with Roy Rogers (then Leonard Slye) and Tim Spencer, and they began developing their trademark “Pioneer sound.” Little did they realize they were launching a juggernaut that would become one of the most decorated and longest-lived groups in American music history. Since then, 47 official members have rotated through to keep the Pioneers’ musical campfire burning brightly.
“We try to stay true to the music,” says Nallie, the current leader and only the fourth “trail boss” in the group’s history, “because many of these songs are truly masterpieces.”
One development that Roy Rogers—whose storied film, TV, and recording career earned him the moniker “King of the Cowboys”—might not have foreseen is the addition of his son Dusty into the group in 2018. “How many guys get to join their father’s group that their dad started 86 years ago?” says Dusty Rogers. “I think it’s almost unheard of.”


The Pioneers’ songs have appeared in more than 100 Western films and continue to be used widely, such as in the Coen brothers’ “The Big Lebowski” (1998) and “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs” (2018), Clint Eastwood’s “The Mule” (2018), and in Ken Burns’ epic “Country Music” TV documentary (2019). A Broadway musical titled “Happy Trails,” about the extraordinary lives of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, is planned for 2021, with multi-Grammy winner T Bone Burnett as the musical director.


The Pioneers are the most decorated group in Western music, winning honours from the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Western Music Association Hall of Fame, the National Cowboy Hall of Fame, the Texas Swing Hall of Fame, and the Hollywood Walk of Fame, to name a few. The Smithsonian Institution has named the group one of America’s “National Treasures.”


“Canadians really know and appreciate Western music,” says Nallie, “and they make us feel right at home, too.”


Tour donations and pledges will benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities.

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