Meet the Performers

Sam Mattise - Boise, Idaho


Singer, songwriter, poet and musician, Sam has been performing professionally for over 35 years. Sam retired from the BLM where he managed the Idaho wild horse herds. Sam writes his poetry and music from his own life experiences and has performed throughout the western U.S. and Canada. Sam was voted the 2006 Singer of the Year for the Cowboy Poets of Idaho, and in 2009 he was inducted into their Hall of Fame. In 2010, Sam and professional photographer Mike Luque, published "Dancing Shadows, Mustangs and Dreams", a book of fantastics photographs and great poems. In 2012, Sam and Mike completed their second book "Cowboy Dreaming - Sunrise to Sunset". 


David Anderson - Ogden, Utah

David Anderson is a home grown Utah boy who has always had a love for music. David started his musical endeavors as a drummer, but when his father asked him to jockey race horses he traded his drums for a guitar because the drums couldn't be packed in the horse trailer. Since his teenage years, David has continued to play and use his talent to cultivate his love of western music.

Today, David is the President of the Western Music Association, Utah Chapter and he loves to share his music with anyone who will listen. He has entertained audiences all across the Western United States at county fairs, festivals, parties and assisted living centers. He has acquired several awards including male vocalist of the year for the Utah chapter of the WMA, and Golden Note award from Cowboy Poets in Idaho. He has also been nominated for songwriter of the year for WMA. David is singing the classics, as well as putting his own western experiences to song to help keep cowboy music alive. 

When he isn't playing his guitar David is a professional Zamboni driver with a true passion in horseback riding and spending time with his f


Ellie Corrigan - Challis, Idaho

In 1935, in a log cabin, nestled in a quiet little valley, seven miles south of Challis Idaho, a baby girl was born. This cabin was pioneer days, a stage coach stop and relay station for teams of horses. To this day Ellie is still using a cow's tail for a compass and remains very active in the ranching and cattle raising business.

In 1987, Ellie, her aunt Roberta Green and sister Ethie started the first Idaho poetry gathering in Salmon, Idaho. Ellie is a member of the Cowboy Poets of Idaho and their Hall of Fame, as well as a recipient of the Silver Quill Award for poetry. Ellie considers all members of CPI as part of her extended family. Ellie's stories are real, and her humor is genuine.


Sam DeLeeuw - 

... This last is the 'real deal'! 
Make no mistake, Sam DeLeeuw knows that she's talking about.

Twenty plus years a rancher's wife; she's herded horses, cows, sheep, and is a two time rodeo queen.

In college, she was the only girl in the Ag curriculum, and was every guys 'favorite date' because she'd help with the branding.

Sam's background gives her all the ideas for her often humorous, but sometimes tear evoking stories. Much of her original poetry is taken from her own family's genealogy; happenings from day to day life.

Her honors and awards are too numerous to mention, but include three time "Female Poet of the Year" from the Western Music Association. Sam has also been awarded with "Humorist of the Year" from the Academy of Western Artists. Her most treasured rewards are the people she's met over the years. Those folks have now become some of her closest friends.


Chris Mortensen - Utah

Chris Mortensen is an experienced songwriter and performer. He has played music for over 45 years in bands, as part of the western trio, Saddle Serenade, and as a solo act. He plays guitar and bass guitar. Chris has written over 60 original songs. His latest CD, the self-titled Saddle Serenadealso features Mary Jo Hansen and Lindsey Oliva, a very talented mother/daughter team. This CD is earning much critical acclaim.

Chris is President of the Utah Chapter of the Western Music Association, and Second Vice President of the Cowboy Poets of Utah. Chris also belongs to the Cowboy Poets of Idaho. His poems and songs can be found on Saddle Serenade music can be purchased on 


Scott Glen Lambertsen

Scott Glen Lambertsen has deep Rocky Mountain roots going back to pioneer days.  His great-great grandfather helped settle and ranch the four corners region.  Scott grew up listening to the stories about his ancestors and their challenges of settling, farming and ranching this part of the West.  His new CD “From the North Platte to the San Juan” was inspired by some of these stories.

He picked up the guitar at age 12 and began writing and singing by 14.  Scott has played all kinds of music over the years and in all kinds of places but always enjoys the kind of music you hear just sitting around a campfire with friends and family the most.  Now happily residing in Idaho, Scott spends more and more time with his beautiful wife Elayne, his guitars and his dog Aggie and not nearly enough time with his four grand-buddies and the sweetest little grand-darlin’ ever.


Mark Seeley - Fremont County, Idaho

A lifelong resident of Fremont County Idaho, Chest, to be exact, once known as Fall River. He became involved in Cowboy Poetry as a fill-in for a friend and through encouragement of some of the greats in CPI, he continues to share his love of this way of life, depicted through his stories and music.

Over the last 25 years Mark's traveled many highway miles performing in eight western states and Canada. Mark has been a featured guest at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nevada. He's participated in several Cowboy Poetry Rodeo’s with top 3 finishes and lastly, has four recordings as the “Fall River Boys”. His latest release “The Last Cowboy” features his works as a solo artist.

Mark has been awarded all three Awards of Recognition by the Cowboy Poets of Idaho, Golden Note, Hall of Fame and the Silver Quill. He is currently a member of the Cowboy Poets of Idaho and a Charter member of the Charley Russell Western Heritage Association. 


Stampede - Utah

From West of the freeway in Northern Utah comes STAMPEDE! a multiple award winning group consisting of the husband/wife team of Steve and Terri Taylor. They have been performing together since 1999 and have played in venues coast to coast and border to border and lots of places in between averaging over 500 performances a year. They have opened for major headliners including Riders in the Sky, Roy Rogers, Jr., The Sons of the Pioneers, Dan Seals, Wylie and the Wild West, Baxter Black, Don Edwards and Waddie Mitchell. They have headlined in major shows in every state in the Intermountain West.


Thatch Elmer 


Thatch is a 13 year old Cowboy Poet residing in Harrisville Utah. Thatch has been reciting Cowboy Poetry since he was old enough to speak a complete sentence.  Thatch enjoys writing and reciting originals along with reciting the classics.  He has been influenced by his Father, Grand Fathers, and family friend Don Proffit.  Thatch has spent his 13 years listening to stories about ranch life as it used to be from his Great Grandpa who was a Cowboy all of his 88 years.  Thatch enjoys Ranch Work and helping with Brandings in Utah Wyoming and this year in Montana. Most days you will find Thatch Working Horses at the Lazy D Barn and Arena, Team Roping, Calf Roping and Ranch Rop

Thatch is a Co-Recipient of the First annual “Rod McQueary/Sue Wallis” scholarship award which was presented to him at the 2014 National Cowboy Poetry gathering in Elko Nevada.  Thatch was an invited and featured Poet at the 2015 National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko sharing his poems in 4 sessions and the closing session with 15 of the most respected and revered Cowboy Poets of our time. Thatch will be returning to Elko in January 2016 as an invited and featured Entertainer. Thatch is also a published poet on and in the book “Cowboy Rhymes-N-Dreams of Other Times”, to be Cowboy Poetry titled “The First Go Round”. This CD has been nominated for several awards and can be heard on Western Radio Stations in the United States, Canada, Australia and Europe. Thatch has performed at many gatherings throughout the West, Sharing the stage with numerous talented Cowboy Poets and Musicians, and has enjoyed making new Friends and Fans everywhere he goes.

Please visit           Find Thatch on Facebook @ thatch elmer-cowboy poet


Wayne Hughes - Stanley, Idaho

Wayne Hughes has been singing and playing the guitar for over 50 years. He has been writing songs for over 40 years. Wayne plays a wide variety of instruments including guitar, bass guitar, mandolin, keyboards, multiple brass instruments, and the harmonica. Wayne has a rich baritone voice and has performed all over the U.S.. Although his roots are in country and western music, he also performs and plays many other genres. Wayne currently splits his time between Idaho and Texas.


Ken Wellard -- Sandy, Utah

Ken Wellard was born in Boise, Idaho, and presently lives in Sandy, Utah.  He grew up on a ranch located between Shoshone and Bellevue, Idaho.  Ranch life consisted of herding cows in the summer on an old black mare named Floss.  Floss was smarter than Ken and usually managed to dump him on a routine basis, and was responsible for some of the poetry he writes today.  Ken and his mother, Eunice, joined Cowboy Poets of Idaho in 2001, and have been active in the organization ever since.  Both have received the coveted Silver Quill award in recognition of their writing ability.  Ken has produced and been responsible for the Hagerman Idaho Cowboy Poets and Musicians Gathering for the past six years.


Bill Chiles

Bill Chiles was raised in Rigby, Idaho and grew up ranching and farming.  His journey into cowboy poetry started when he began singing range ballads and trail songs in 1994.  He has performed all over the United States with the exceptions of Alaska and Hawaii. Bill has won numerous awards for his cowboy poetry. Bill has also been apart of many recordings for the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, WY. In conjunction with the library of Congress.  He is always searching for the oldest version of any song or poem. Bill's  just a good ol' campfire singer.