Cowboys Are Frequently, Secretly Fond of Each Other

Album: digital download (2006)
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Songfacts®:

  • Long before Brokeback Mountain, this song explored the subject of Cowboy homosexuality, but in a very humorous way. Written and originally recorded in 1981 by Ned Sublette, the song makes that case that many cowboys are, in fact, gay. Sublette points out the leather and boots as evidence, and how those who get most upset about homosexuality are often gay themselves.
  • Nelson had a tape of Sublette's version, and often played it to friends to get a good laugh. When the movie Brokeback Mountain was released, Nelson decided to record the song and release it on iTunes with some other previously unreleased tracks. This song was very risky for Nelson to do in the macho world of Country music, but he clearly saw the humor of the song and was not phased by the content. Nelson sang "He was a Friend of Mine" on the Brokeback Mountain soundtrack. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Julian - Oakland, AR, for above 2
  • Nelson told the Dallas Morning News that he was encouraged by his friend and tour manager David Anderson, who came out as gay. Said Anderson: "This song obviously has special meaning to me in more ways than one. I want people to know more than anything - gay, straight, whatever - just how cool Willie is and his way of thinking, his tolerance, everything about him."
  • The video features the Broken Lizard Comedy Troupe as a group of gay cowboys doing lots of gay things while performing this song. It was shot at the Round Up Saloon in Dallas, which is a gay cowboy bar. Burt Reynolds stars as the video's director, who at the end asks them to do the routine again because he'd like to see a little more.

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