Ten Songs for Horse People

Ten Songs That Every Horse Person Can Relate to at Their Core

 Written by: Jen Barker, September 2019

When Old Town Road became the hit song of the summer of 2019, we couldn’t help but giggle at some of the horsey references in the Lil Nas X Country Rap. Don’t get us wrong, we think its catchy, but there are a few other songs that more accurately capture our horse person spirit. Check out our Spotify Playlist “The Carolinas Equestrian” to hear most of these sing along worthy tunes!

10) Texas in 1880 by Radney Foster and Pat Green—This song comes in at number ten only because it hasn’t had the airplay of some of the others on the list. The line we love; “Sometimes you make eight sometimes you hit dirt, go on and pin another number to the back of my shirt!” But trust me, you’ll feel every word of this one. Go ahead, put it on repeat. You can thank us later. 

9) Rhinestone Cowboy by Glenn Campbell—Buckle up your most blinged out belt and hop on your flashiest horse. Glenn Campbell’s 1975 hit may be more about the music business than the horse business but we still love to crank up this classic! 

8) We should be Friends by Miranda Lambert—Any fan of Miranda’s knows that when she’s not on tour, she loves to be in the barn or at a horse show. We love that she mentions horses in this chart topper. Our favorite line: “If you ride your white horse like the wind, if what you see is what you get, well then…we should be friends.” By the end, you’ll be convinced that Miranda is your long-lost horse show bestie. 

7) The Cowboy in Me by Tim McGraw—C’mon Tim, Cowboys aren’t THAT bad. Tim’s a little harsh in this 2001 ballad, but we love it anyway and the last line gets us every time: “We ride and never worry about the fall, I guess that’s just the cowboy in us all.” Yep. 

6)  Cowgirls Don’t Cry by Brooks and Dunn featuring Reba McEntire—“If you fall get back on again, cowgirls don’t cry.” It’s one of the first rules of riding, and we’re happy it was put to a chorus we can sing along with. Dust yourself off, get back on and crank this one up when your horse, or your life puts you in the dirt. 

5)  Amarillo By Morning by George Strait—Let’s be real, we could make a whole list of George Strait songs that horse people feel to their core. It was tough to narrow it down, but in the end King George’s 1982 release got the nod because of the line that we love: “I ain’t rich but Lord I’m free.” Oh boy can we relate. 

4) How ‘bout Them Cowgirls by George Strait—Ok, just one more. We fell in love with King George’s music all over again with this 2007 ode to the horse girl. It never made it to number one on the Billboard Charts, probably because we were too busy riding colts and baling hay to call into our local radio station and make a request. 

3) Rodeo by Garth Brooks—”Boots, chaps, cowboy hats, spurs and Latigo.” How could we leave this on off the list? From the first note, every horse person is ready to sing along to every bit of this cautionary tale. Bown bown.

2)  Mammas Don’t let your Babies Grow up to be Cowboys by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings—Starting to see a theme here? Horse people are different breed. Willie and Waylon get us. Mamma? Well, sometimes that’s a different story. 

1) Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty—No mention of cowboys, cowgirls, boots or saddles—but what self-respecting horse girl (or boy) hasn’t tried to blow out a speaker in their F350 when Tom croons our favorite line? Oh you know the one we’re talking about: “She’s a good girl, crazy ‘bout Elvis,” (GET READY)…”LOVES HORSES!!!!” Since its release in 1989 this ballad has been a sleeper favorite of horse people everywhere. Then in 2016, Jimmy Fallon and Kevin Bacon confirmed our suspicions that Free Fallin’ was meant to be a song about horses all along:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5RjHELoev0

We see you Jimmy Fallon, but the jokes on you, we love your “First Drafts of Rock Version” almost as much as we love the original.

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MEET THE ARDENNES DRAFT HORSE

Written by: Kris Batchelor – Triple Play Farm Published: 11 November 2015   Why this breed? At Triple Play Farm in Davidson, we have a soft spot for draft horses and the more rare, the better. So we were especially excited in 2011 during a visit to Clover Oaks Farm outside of Tampa, Florida, when we were introduced to the breathtaking Ardennes breed. Upon first glance, we were immediately struck by the massive bulk of the horses, but shortly after that, we were intrigued by their calm, gentle nature. Joyce Concklin’s herd of Ardennes, consisting of a stallion, three mares and three yearlings, were quite simply the quietest horses that we had ever met. In 2003, Joyce visited Belgium and subsequently purchased two Ardennes horses, the first of their kind to be imported to the United States. Since then, she has created a small but successful Ardennes breeding program, due largely to her stallion Simba du Pont de Tournay [barn name Simba]. This magnificent roan stud was chosen to be the Celebration Horse at Breyerfest 2015 and created quite a stir in Lexington. He is a stunning example of the breed at 15hh and almost 1700 pounds. Simba shares bloodlines with some of the horses of Celtic Horse Logging, an environmentally-friendly timber harvesting company based in the UK that breeds horses for their strength, durability and stamina. Joyce describes Simba as “a big teddy bear.” Breed history Ardennes horses (known as Ardennais in Europe) hail from the rugged and tough Ardennes region that borders France and Belgium. The rough terrain and harsh climates of the area have played a part in the evolution of the breed. Ardennes are known for being strong and tractable and are one of the oldest established heavy horse breeds, dating back to the Paleolithic Period. The Ardennes is thought to be a direct descendant of the Solutrian horse, which existed circa 50,000 B.C. Throughout history, references to the Ardennes horses have been recorded by emperors, kings and knights. They were even mentioned by Julius Caesar, who stated in commentaries that “the horse of the second Belgium” is “rustic, hard and tireless.” It is said that Napoleon owed his return from the Napoleonic Wars to his Ardennes cavalry which withstood cold and privations that destroyed over 10,000 horses. Knights of the Middle Ages found the breed to be reliable and easily capable of carrying the weight of a fully armored soldier. Today across Europe, Ardennes horses are still used in commercial forestry, farming, competitive driving and as pleasure and therapy horses. Breed Characteristics The modern Ardennes is more thickset than any other draught horse and has been described as being built like a tractor. He has a wide frame and a rather short back with very muscular loins. The legs are lightly feathered, and the feet, in comparison with the massive body, are smaller than might be expected, although they are well-made, strong, and seldom flat or brittle. The Ardennes has small, pricked ears, which is unusual in heavy breeds. Because of his exceptionally good shoulders, his action is typically free, animated, and straight. The climate in the French Ardennes is harsh, and the winters are severe. Consequently, the Ardennes horse is extraordinarily hardy, and has a very strong constitution. The breed has a reputation for extreme docility and exemplary gentleness, and can be handled easily, even by children. The preferred colors, as stipulated in the breed standard, are roan, red-roan, iron grey, dark or liver chestnut, and bay. Bay-brown, light chestnut, and palomino are admissible, while black, dapple grey, and any other coat colors are not. Clover Oaks Farm Leo Back in 2011, as we stood in Joyce’s pasture with three of her yearling colts, we decided that Clover Oaks Farm Leopold was destined to become a therapy horse back in North Carolina. He arrived in Davidson as a yearling in the summer of 2011 and has been raised in an environment where he lives in a herd and has had constant handling using natural horsemanship techniques. He was started slowly and correctly under harness as a two year old and under saddle as a four year old in the tradition of the more slowly maturing draft breeds. Currently, he continues to accumulate training miles under saddle, but his day job is working with behavioral health clients at Triple Play. He works with clients struggling with challenges related to depression, anxiety, marital stress, eating disorders, PTSD, ADD/ADHD, autism spectrum disorders and more. There is a special significance to his work with our veteran clients given the breed’s history of military usage, including pulling artillery in World War I. It is truly a full circle moment to have this noble breed contributing to the rehabilitation of combat warriors. Around the barn, Leo’s nickname is “Wreck It Ralph.” He often seems to prefer the company of humans to other horses and has been taught to fetch his feed pan and offer it for refills. He is unflappable and endearing and we can’t imagine the farm without him. We are hoping for many more years of his wonderful company and although he is one of fifteen total Ardennes in the United States, he is truly one in a million to us. We invite you to come meet him at one of the Triple Play Farm quarterly Open House events which are open to the public and where you can meet our herd, including Fjords, Ardennes and miniature horses and learn more about our therapeutic services.

Meet The Egyptian Arabian

 Written by: Trisha Dingle – Egyptian Rose Sport Horses Published: 23 September 2015 Average Height: 14-15.2 hands Colors: any solid color including bay, black, chestnut, & grey. May also exhibit “rabicano” characteristics (“roaning” appearance, white hairs throughout coat and/or predominantly in flank and girth areas, as well as tail). Ask your average person about the Arabian horse, and they’ll usually describe a beautiful, yet hot & spirited steed – pretty to watch, but not something they’d want to ride every day. Yet, ask your average Arabian owner and they’ll tell you stories of never-ending loyalty, a “do-anything” attitude, and above average intelligence and sensitivity. Once someone has been enchanted by the Arabian horse, they rarely want to ride another breed! The Arabian horse is 100% “pure in blood”, as it is the only breed in which no out-cross is permitted, or has ever been permitted in history. The Arab is actually considered a distinct sub-species rather than just another breed due to this. Arabians have been used to create nearly all of our recognized light horse breeds, from Morgans, to Thoroughbreds, to Quarter Horses and even gaited horses. There are many “types” of Arabians in the world, but the Egyptian is the rarest and generally thought of as the most beautiful. They can trace their heritage back to the desert origins of the Arabian Peninsula, back to the mares and stallions of Viceroy Mohammed Ali and his grandson Abbas Pasha I. They are considered pure of strain, having come in unbroken lines from Bedouin tribes in the Arabian deserts, who could recite their horses’ pedigree from memory. If you follow the pedigree back far enough of today’s Egyptian Arabian, you will finally come to a line that simply says “Desert Bred”. When Abbas Pasha was assassinated in 1854 his fabled stud was disbanded and his horses scattered. Many were exported to England and became part of Crabbet stud, owned by Lady Anne Blunt (descendents of these horses now known as “Crabbet Arabians”). Others ended up in Poland (“Polish Arabians”) and still others in Russia (“Russian Arabians”). While descending from the original desert-breds, these other types were bred for various characteristics and not necessarily staying true to the original Bedouin ideals. The true original “desert bred Arabian” was in danger of extinction, until the Royal Agricultural Society (R.A.S) was formed in Egypt in 1908 to assure the preservation of what was surely an historic national treasure. The R.A.S is now known as the Egyptian Agricultural Organization (E.A.O). As a desert horse, the Egyptian Arabian was bred for strength, heart, and stamina. They were prized by the tribes that bred them, so beauty was also an important characteristic, as was loyalty. It is said that in the case of a sand storm Bedouin chiefs would leave their wives and children outside while their prized broodmares were kept in the tent for safety. Ask anyone who rides an Egyptian nowadays, and they will tell you this heart and loyalty is still very much present. In the United States, The Pyramid Society was organized to help preserve this incredible horse in America. Every year in June the Egyptian Event is held at the KY Horse Park in Lexington, as a way to showcase the breed in halter and performance classes. Educational seminars for breeders, trainers, and prospective owners are held all week, and it is a wonderful way to learn more about the breed and to connect with other admirers. Although known primarily for their exquisite beauty – a large dark eye, “dished” profile, pronounced forehead (known as a “jibbah”) and long arched neck – like other types of Arabians the Egyptian excels at more than just halter classes. Because of their strength and stamina they make incredible endurance horses. Their athleticism helps them perform in dressage and other sport horse disciplines (yes, even jumping!), and their beauty makes them appealing western pleasure horses. Thanks to their high level of intelligence, many Egyptian Arabs are used for cutting and working cow horse classes, as well as general ranch work. And despite being considered “spirited” by some, they, in fact, are fabulous youth and family horses – as long as you respect his intelligence the Egyptian Arabian will try it’s heart out for you! To learn more, visit The Pyramid Society at www.pyramidsociety.org.

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