Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Cowboy Song Composer

If Texas is famous for creating the cowboy, then Oscar J. Fox is famous for creating cowboy songs. And, Oscar Fox, the cowboy song composer, was born in the Texas Hill Country.

Born in Burnet County, Texas, in 1879, to Bennie and Emma Fuchs, he attended school at a very young age in Marble Falls after his mother died. His family, of German heritage, must have had some significant money, because he left to study music in Switzerland when he was still in his teens. He ultimately came back to the United States, where he lived in New York for a couple of years before returning to Texas.

Eventually settling in San Antonio, he wrote some of the most famous cowboy compositions, which include, “The Hills of Home,” “The Old Chisholm Trail,” “The Cowboy’s Lament,” and that popular “Git Along Little Dogie’s” song.

“The Hills of Home” is probably the most well-known song Fox wrote, and many speculate that he wrote it in remembrance of his early years around Marble Falls, Texas, and the surrounding hill country. And, if he did, who could blame him? Marble Falls and the enveloping hills around it are a national treasure. And, Fox, a treasure of the Texas Hill Country, died in 1961, and was buried in San Antonio.

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