Singing Colorado Cowgirl, Caitlyn Taussig
- June 14, 2018
- Tiffany Schwenke
Deep in the Colorado countryside there is a beautiful lady who has found herself and her song amongst the cattle, the horses, and the wildlife that roam her family’s ranch. Caitlyn Taussig has been inspired by all that surrounds her on both the rolling hills and high in the summer mountain pastures that her family’s cattle enjoy as well.
I recently asked Caitlyn Taussig a few questions so we can all get to know her a little better…
CS: Please tell us about your life growing up?
CT: I was born here in Kremmling, Colorado where we still have a family ranch and a commercial cow/calf operation. My dad is 92 and retired from ranching when he was in his early 80’s. Since then my sister, my mom, and I have been an all-girl crew! My sister, Cameron, works on another ranch nearby running their horse program and as their assistant livestock manager. She’s pretty busy so the day to day operations on our place are mostly my mom (Vicki) and myself! We all make decisions together, but I guess I’m our “manager”.
I grew up on another ranch in the same county, and am only now realizing as an adult how amazing my childhood was. My mother took a really long hiatus from her teaching job when she had my sister and me, and worked on the ranch when we were growing up. When we were really young we had a wonderful friend of my mom’s who took care of us while our parents were in the hayfield, and when we got older we pretty much ran amok! We always rode our horses bareback out to the hayfield to eat lunch with mom so she knew we were still alive. But we played in the dirt and with our animals and just had an incredible outdoor childhood. We got to help ride a lot, but it wasn’t until we moved to our current ranch that we really started taking a more active role.
I went to college at the University of Colorado where I got my degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and I did a stint studying abroad in Zanzibar, Tanzania. But ranching is in my blood so I came home after school and have been here ever since!
CS: What inspired you to start up a music career?
CT: I started singing as a kid and playing guitar when I was eight, and I wrote my first song when I was ten! It was a ballad about the Prince and the Pauper. We grew up listening to a lot of folk music (Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, the Kingston Trio, etc.) and old country. I wrote my first cowboy song in my early 20’s. What really got my career started was attending a Bruce Sandifer workshop in Kiowa at Karen Ross’s place in 2012. After riding we’d get guitars out and I played some of my songs. They were just starting the Californio Bridlehorse Association and invited me to come play at the first Early Californio Skills of the Rancho in Santa Ynez, CA. I met another musician there, Robert Dennis of South Dakota, and he spread the word to Daron Little (singer and cowboy from Saratoga, Wyoming), who got me invited to the Grand Encampment Cowboy Gathering. Bruce and the CBA, and Robert and Daron are now my really good friends and I appreciate what they did for me getting started. I joke that Daron is my big brother!
CS: How do you make your ranch life and music career work together?
CT: I often don’t do a very good job! The ranch keeps me really busy and sometimes I don’t give my music as much time as I should. Last year I started gigging a lot more locally which has been great since that’s my main source of income, but I play a lot of cover songs and haven’t been writing my own as much. I put my first album out in 2015 and haven’t done another since. I have about half of my second album written but it’s slow going. I’m just not a prolific song writer! I tend to put ranching first, which keeps me from networking or attempting to promote my music as much as I probably should.
CS: What is your favorite song to sing?
CT: It changes all the time! Whenever I write a new song or learn a new cover song it’s my favorite to play for a while. But I never get tired of playing my Dad’s Song. I think it’s the best song I’ve written. I have a new song called Katy Snow that I haven’t recorded yet that I really enjoy! It’s written from a man’s perspective about a woman who did him wrong. She’s a bad lady!
You can hear my music and purchase CDs on my website: www.caitlyntaussig.com
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About Tiffany Schwenke
My family has been ranching and raising horses for over 100 years. We raise, train, and market AQHA horses at North Four Mile Creek Horse Ranch. We produce the annual event WYO WILD RIDE RANCH RODEO. I am a wife and a mother to 3 amazing...