Black is hands down one that can say he is a vet, speaker, writer, poet, and radio commentator. But Black does all with a humble and humorous personality. Black is described to be an “easy man to spot, with his bushy mustache, slightly rumpled cowboy hat and bandanna. He looks like a guy who knows his way around a ranch, which sets him apart from just about every other celebrity who’s ever written a business-advice book” (Wolk). Everything that Black has accomplished in life shares a connection leading to each success.
Being a vet lead to him becoming a speaker, then a poet and writer, then a column writer for the newspaper, and then finally a commentator on the radio. Black believed that everything that he has done has changed his life, and he enjoys everything that he is capable of doing. Black says “I’ve come not to believe in fate, but forks in the road. You get a choice. You can step off this way and get hit by a car or step off this way and meet someone or something who will change your life. Neither one is predictable. Looking back, I can see all the forks” (Fibbs).
It is perceived that Baxter Black appreciates everything he has accomplished and that expresses exactly how his personality ties into the work that he creates. Black is basically known for his cowboy poetry. Cowboy poetry is described as poems that contain the country style living or are about the western lifestyle. Black’s background and the life that he lives giving him the expertise to be a cowboy poet. According to the interviewer, Bruce Wolk, “For those who’ve never heard of Baxter Black, he might be thought of as a Western-style renaissance man… turned author, speaker, poet, comedian and media personality”.
In 1982, he started his way into rhyming and introducing his ideas through poetry. In 1985, when Black found an interest for cowboy poetry he went to his first cowboy poetry gathering and ever since then he has been writing and reciting his poems (Asakawa). People soon became interested in everything that Black had to say. Entertaning his audience, it was said that “Black certainly has a way of showing urban folk the ways of cowboys and working the land” (Kaske).
Everyone wanted to hear what he had to say because he had the power to connect to all types of people. Black’s success lies in his ability to inflict on all who hear him, the most powerful equalizers of all, recognition of common sense and the ability to laugh at oneself”(Baxter Black to Perform…). Black’s work and personality have a compelling effect on his audience comparing him to the famous Mark Twain. According to Michelle Kaske, Black is described as “a modern-day Mark Twain who loves to pontificate on the simple pleasures in life with his rugged humor and charm”.
Comparing him to Mark Twain gives him a better reputation drawing in his audience that Twain connected too. Readers who are looking for the atmosphere, culture, and hardly lifestyle of the west will enjoy Black’s observations and style” (Kaske). Also, Black’s fans are drawn to his style due to the “combination of sarcasm mixed with early dialogue on animals life is highly amusing” (Kaske). Black’s career in poetry and speaking brought him much fame. Described by Kaske “Black’s latest collection of humorous musings follows his tradition of plain-spoken, tongue-in-check sarcasm that his fans have come to expert.
From real cowboy weddings to the history and fate of the cowboy image to living and working with animals, Black keeps the one-liners coming”. Black described himself as authenticity being the key to being a cowboy poet. “The western fads are great for publicity… the core audience knows what’s real and what’s phony” (Asakawa). Black’s career in poetry is a big part of his other success in life, such as his columns in the newspaper and his radio show. He appeared before an audience of shows ranging from the Tonight Show and the Nation Public Radio (Baxter Black to Perform…).
Leading him to become a part of the radio shared his work on the air. “Black has a listening audience with more than 130 radio stations in the United States and Canada with his Baxter Black on Monday show”. Adding to Black’s busy schedule he also became writing for columns in the newspaper around the world, “Baxter Black writes rhyming verse about country life and the weekly column that runs in 130 newspapers across the nation. He also reads humorous essays on the National Public Radio” (Thorn).
Out of all Black’s audience, it is obvious that he has no specific audience chosen. He shares his work grabbing the attention of all types of people such as “the bar crowd, love-gone-bad folks, and pompous politicians all fall in the rifle of sights of this rancher, who reaches the thoughts, hearts and funny bones of people from all walks of life”. The results of having all these types of audience are due to Black simply being himself. Black has a unique way of expressing himself with the tone of is voice to his knowledge of the lifestyle that he lives.
Everything that Black shares in his poems and speaks about is things that he finds himself passionate about. When listening to someone that has passion in a topic, they express a tone of voice that is very compelling and inviting to listen too. And due to Black writing and speaking about things that he is passion about gives the audience a feeling that is very inviting and interesting. Black speaks with a soft touch and adding humor to make it that much interesting for his audience to not just listen to what he has to say but to believe everything that he is saying.
As an author, Black “has sold more than a million books and audio videos productions additionally” (Baxter Black to Perform…). When discovering Black’s videos of him sharing his poems and his inputs of life it makes you as an audience draws you in turning his words into a feeling wanting to connect to every word that is coming out of his mouth. In his video titled, So Lucky to Be an American is shot on his front porch with the Arizona sunset in the background, giving it that homey feeling to the video. Connecting the audience first by the setting of the video.
Second he talks with a humble tone of voice and slowing his speech, keeping the audience hooked on the words that are coming out of his mouth. In the video, Black speaks of how our country is free and that we are free to speak of what is on our mind. Black says in his video that his “New Year’s resolution is to; stop once a day to remind myself that this is as good as it gets”. He speaks to the audience referring to take life slow and enjoy every moment that life gives. In the video, his audience learns to appreciate life’s journeys and always appreciate everything that is right in front one’s eyes.
While learning about Baxter Black the veterinarian-cowboy poet, brought great knowledge of his types of poetry. Black says “he knows he’s financially secure without the cowboy life. He makes a good living, doing about 1,000 appearances a year. He’s sold about 300,000 books and draws between 500 and 1,000 people per appearance” (Simon). For over 25 years he has traveled the United States and Canada, scattering his wit and left-handed observations to folks looking for a bright spot in their day” (Baxter).
Black then concludes with, “in spite of all the computerized, digitalized, high-tech innovations of today, there will always be a need for folks to be a cowboy, ‘Ya either are one, or ya aren’t! ’” (Baxter). Black explains in an interview that he loves and appreciates everything that he has done in his life, but says that his life was already great when he met his wife. After that point he said his life was complete as soon as he met his wife, it concludes that Black is happy with life and that his career is great but it’s not the world to him.
His life doesn’t revolve around his work, giving his audience another reason to love him just that much more. Black is soft spoken and an old country cowboy but he can compel 1,000 audiences into listening and loving his work. Black is a simple country man that never planned on becoming everything that he has become, a speaker, a poet, a column writer, and a commentator on the radio, but he surely did with the simplicity of who he truly is. He made a living out of the knowledge he knows about ranching and the country lifestyle.