ARTRA presents Michael Martin Murphey
Michael Martin Murphey has always had an affinity for the Old and New West. He first began entertaining while sitting around a campfire at the Sky Ranch in Lewisville, TX, where he performed old cowboy songs. While attending UCLA, he was a member of the folk-rock group the Lewis and Clark Expedition, named after the pioneers of the West. In 1971, he moved back to Texas and joined the burgeoning Austin Music scene, which engendered the famed Outlaw movement that revolutionized country music and impacted rock music throughout the 1970's. Murphey's first hit, in 1972, was "Geronimo's Cadillac" which quickly turned into an anthem for the Indian rights movement and made him a central figure in the Austin music scene.
It was three years and three albums later that Murphey established himself as a major hitmaker with the Top 10 smash hit "Wildfire" and the follow-up hit, "Carolina in the Pines". Within years, he also validated his country credentials with such hits as "Cherokee Fiddle" and "A Mansion on the Hill". His first Number One country song, "What's Forever For" came in 1982 and has been followed by such memorable hits including "Still Taking Chances", Disenchanted", "Will It Be Love by Morning", "What She Wants", "I'm Gonna Miss You Girl", and "Cowboy Logic". Murphey has always loved cowboy music and throughout his recording career, he has continually embraced themes from his homeland - The West. Today's best-known and best-selling cowboy singer, Murphey has had 20 Top 10 pop and country hits as well as three recent Cowboy Songs albums featuring both classics from the past and hot new cowboy music. Murphey calls these albums "the music of my people, my land, my culture, and my own life".
Murphey has always been determined to reach those listeners who yearn to reach beyond the current hits and find music that taps into a deeper part of the soul. "I think the sales of my cowboy albums prove there is a hunger out there for history and roots and analysis of who we are and what we are all about," he says. "These albums didn't make it because of hit records on the radio. There are hundreds of thousands of people out there who seek out music that strikes them on a deep level. Those are the people who I want to connect with." Michael Martin Murphey - - - singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer, actor, entertainer, western historian, cowboy, Quarter Horse and cattle rancher and conservationist - - - has worked tireless to become the world's leading representative of the culture of the American West.
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Murphey has been performing his songs with orchestras at hundreds of special concerts throughout the country for the past ten years. His shows are such a hit, that he has been invited for many command return performances. This unique program, "A Night in the American West" was recorded live with the San Antonio Symphony and released as Sagebrush Symphony on Warner Western Records. It was also recorded with the Oklahoma Philharmonic for the television show, Austin City Limits and shown nation-wide on PBS. The program features many authentic and well loved Cowboy Songs which are universally recognized as a vital part of American Culture.