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Otto Gray
and his Oklahoma Cowboys
Born:  March 2, 1884
Died:  November 8, 1967

About The Artist

Otto Gray and His Oklahoma Cowboys have an interesting connection to American history. It seems that in 1924, a Billy McGinty who was one of Colonel Theodore Roosevelt's Rough Riders, decided to organize a band that became known as the Oklahoma Cowboy Band. Their aim was to bring "...back to the present generation the music and songs of the early days of the West."

The members of the band were recruited from various ranches in the area and were lead and managed by Otto Gray and soon became quite popular in the nearby towns. Their fame grew and eventually caught the attention of radio station KFRU, which was a small radio station out of Bristow, Oklahoma and invited them to make their debut over the air. No date was given in the folio we had access to at this time.

At that same time, Otto Gray took over the group as Billy McGinty decided to retire to his ranch and also duties as a postmaster at Ripley, Oklahoma. Under Gray's leadership, they became known as "Otto Gray and His Oklahoma Cowboys." And later, they were reportedly appearing on other larger radio stations in the West and Middle West, but no mention was made.

Timeline and Trivia Notes

Group members included:

  • Otto Gray
  • Mrs. Otto Gray known as "mommie"
  • Owen Gray ("Zeb")
  • Wade Allen ("Hy")
  • Lee Allen ("Zeke")
  • "Chief" Sanders

Credits & Sources

  • Songs; Otto Gray and His Oklahoma Cowboys; Publisher and Publish Date Unknown.

Recordings (78rpm/45rpm)

Rec. No. Side Song Title
  05250 A It Can't Be Done
  05256 B I Had But Fifty Cents
  05256 B Barefoot Boy With Boots On
  05267 A Tom Cat Blues
  05267 B Coon Hunt
  05301 A Your Mother Still Prays For You, Jack
  05301 B Be Home Early Tonight My Dear Boy
  05327 A The Terrible Marriage
  05327 B Plant A Watermelon On My Grave
  05337 A Midnight Special
  05337 B I Can't Change It
  05430 A Streak O Lean (W/7 Foot Dilly)
  05430 B Tallpoosa Bound (W/7 Foot Dilly)
  05432 A Fiddlers Tryout In Georgia (W/7 Foot Dilly)
  05479 A Who Stole The Lock
  05479 B Four Thousand Years Ago