R.W. Hampton

Cimarron, NM

In a career spanning more than two decades, R.W. Hampton has won acclaim and countless awards singing songs celebrating the Western way of life. His newest release is the first of a two-part project, This Cowboy — My Country, and his convictions have never been stronger. “I’ve got to live with myself, and I choose to do so following a certain code of ethics,” he says. “There’s a very proud tradition out here. To be called ‘a cowboy’ by men who are the best of the breed is an amazing honor. There’s great pride in being called that when you’ve earned it.”

Growing up in a small Texas town, Hampton has drifted all across the American West, working cowboy jobs punching cattle, riding young colts, shoeing horses and even leading trail rides and guiding hunters in the high country, but perhaps his favorite was singing around the campfire while out with the wagon. Never glamorous, ranch work instilled in him a positive approach to life.

He is a full-time performer with his 15th album in the works, and Hampton’s rich baritone voice brings an honest quality whether he’s performing live or on record. He writes and sings about what he knows and lives. He was recently listed among the top 50 Country and Western Singers of all time by American Cowboy magazine, and his music has earned numerous honors from such prestigious organizations as The Academy of Western Artists and the Western Music Association, which inducted him into their Hall of Fame in 2011. The National Cowboy Museum and Western Heritage Center also presented Hampton his third Wrangler Award in 2011.