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Artist Profile

Western Ranch OLDIES ~ Country ~  Rockabilly

Western Ranch OLDIES ~ Country ~ Rockabilly

Link to the most recent "Various Artist Compilation." Jan 2016 digital album release. Set up for physical CD distribution by Amazon 'On Demand'


Esther Casteel started writing songs and composing music from about 1926-30. Writer Successor Member, is Douglas Deason, as of 2007. Western Ranch Music has been an ASCAP licensed Record Label since about 1952. Preserved for family and all the artists and band members who recorded under the label and any writers and/or, composers who Esther Casteel, worked with over the many years. Over 200 of Esther's songs are owned and recorded under Western Ranch Music Record Label. If or when The Successor may be seen on a song file, rest assured that credit goes to his grandmother, Esther Casteel.

Esther Casteel, designed her Western Ranch Music Record Label, around 1950, while living in New Mexico and then moved to California where she obtained her recording license in 1952 and designed the label herself. She was also an oil on canvas painter of Western scenery.

Some Bands and Artists under her label and/or who performed her songs from the 1950’s to 1995, were Cecil Ziebart and The Polka Pals, Ked Killen and The Western All Stars,Lee Felts and The Feltons, John York, Virge Brown and The Saddle Mates, Gordon Harris and Western Four. The Pell Brothers performed Esther’s song “Big Earl” under the Western Ranch Music Record Label and the Elliot Brothers Ork, recorded under Esther’s Label at the same time. Tex Ritter and Ked Killen performed Esther’s “Hey Pretty Mama” song. Hey Pretty Mama, earned a Red Hot Label Hit in 1968.

In a Billboard Article dated June 12, 1954 "Esther Casteel's Western Ranch Music bowed with the new label and a flock of C&W artists .... 'Grand Ole Opry' troup headlining Ernest Tubb, Ray Price, Marty Robins, Rusty Gabbard, Danny Dill, and The Drifting Cowboys and The Texas Troubadors and Bill Myrick of KECK, Odessa, TX., slated for the 'Permian Basin Jamboree' in Odessa." On September 18, 1954 "The firms prexy was recording such artists as Baby Darlene, Cowboy Dallas Turner, Cherokee Rocky Rose and His Trail Dusters, Jim Hall and his Texas Ramblers, and Bob Wesley".

Some of Esther's first releases listed in Billboards Sept 12, 1953 issue are "Deep In The Rockies, WRM-3-A; In My Garden of Dreams, WRM-3-B; Don't be Jealous Honey, WRM-8-A; My Heart's The symbol of Loves Sorrow WRM-8-B; Lest You Forget, WRM-10-A; and Blue Sunshine, WRM-10-B". On December 5, 1953, Esther Casteel is listed as personal manager of Auto-harp and guitar player, Harvey Fink. And on January 30, 1954 Esther releases two more recordings "There’s a Tear on The Roses Tonight, WRM-12-A and Cowtown Ball, WRM-12-B".

Around 1952 and into the late 1950’s, Esther managed three additional recording bands; The Westernairs, Old Westerners and Rhythumaires. Esther recorded previously under White Label in New Mexico and Colorado, circa 1940-51. (Not to be mistaken for the European White Label). The Sun Valley Boys were one of her earlier recording bands when she lived in New Mexico. In the early 50’s she had her own band called Cimmeron Sun Valley Boys. At one point in time, there were thirteen bands and seven singers contracted to Esther Casteel, including Canadian groups. She was a busy lady. Esther had already raised a family of seven children and was forty-one years old when she obtained her recording license. She started her family and writing music in about 1926.

By 2006 Esther Casteel was a 47-year member of The National Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 1973 Esther Casteel, was voted to become one of 21 Grammy Governors to serve from 1973-1974 out of the San Francisco, Ca., Chapter. The only woman at that time. Something to be proud of in that day and time. She was a voting member of NARAS, Los Angeles, Ca., Chapter for 38 years. She also became an ASCAP NY member shortly after she obtained her Western Ranch Music Record Label License in 1952. Western Ranch Music remains an ASCAP Member and now with Publisher status.

Releases of vinyl records and reissues of vinyl 45's, Collector Mono LP's and Cassettes were produced with Esther's works as late as 1995, and vinyls still are. Esther Casteel wrote and composed with many other writers and composers as well. She was a pioneer of circa 1940’s-50's Country, Western, Blues and Cowboy music and sound carried over into her 1960’s-70's C&W Retro, Blues, Rockabilly & Polka style of music.

These unique works continue to be available under her original WRM label and more are returning to the market due to demand from collectors and fans that love the original clean crisp old Country Retro, Rockabilly and Blues sound and style provided by the WRM 1950’s-70's collection.

The May 27, 1967 issue of Billboard, International News, Toronto, Canada, states "The Western Ranch Label in the U.S. has released it's second single by Cecil Ziebart and The Polka Pals old time and Western music group from Medicine Hat, Alta. Their "Rose of Cherokee" backed with "Be Sure Dear" is making charts in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana, and negotiations are under way for Canadian distribution."

Esther 'Kitty' Casteel received a trophy for her "Rose of Cherokee" Song. She was named Best Western Music Writer and was listed in Who's Who in Country Music. Rose of Cherokee was the first song ever 'written and composed' solely by Esther in 1930.

Rose of Cherokee earned a gold label by running 16 weeks as a top of the charts Musical Hit, circa 1967. Not long after the Rose of Cherokee Hit “Hey Pretty Mama” earned Author Esther Casteel and shared composer Ked Killen a Hit. Hey Pretty Mama, earned a Red Hot Label Hit in 1968-69. Tex Ritter performed Esther‘s Hey Pretty Mama song as well.

Esther wrote and recorded hundreds of songs starting in the late 1920's and by the year 1995. Most were recorded on vinyl records. After that, songs were available on Cassette also. Now, the same digitally remastered songs are available on CD album, and MP3 and WAV single song and album downloads.

Western Ranch Music has digitally remastered many of the Oldie Pops. Some songs are now available on popular music download and streaming sites worldwide; Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, Reverbnation, YouTube, Google Play, Rdio, Deezer, Xbox, Rhapsody, eMusic, Simfy Africa, iHeart, Mix Radio, Media Net, Vervelife, Tidal, Graceonote, Shazam, 7digital, Juke, JB Hi-Fi, Slaker, Gurera, KKBox, Akazoo, Anghami, Spinlet, Neurotic Media, Yandex, Target Music, Claromusica, Play.me, Zvooq, Saavn, 8tracks, and many more.

The Rare Oldies can also be requested for play on most all Country and Oldies radio stations worldwide. These digitally remastered "radio quality" Oldies Pop songs are available as free downloads to licensed radio stations worldwide at AirplayDirect.com or by written request to westernranchmusic@gmail.com.

Physical CD or individual digital downloads, are available for sale at Amazon.com and about 50 online stores worldwide.

Search "Country Legends 1952-95" by Western Ranch Music." (Various Artists).

Here is the link to the most recent "Various Artist Compilation." Jan 2016 digital album release. Set up for physical CD distribution by Amazon 'On Demand'


(Information and historical events were gathered from physical news and articles collected over the many years by WRM and/or information is WRM history; and/or information was shared by and/or published previously for/with/by permission of WRM Record Label).

Written by Deason D, Writer Successor Member (ASCAP), Manager, Owner

© Western Ranch Music Record Label; 2012 Pub; updated 12/27/2013; 10/01/2014; 01/07/2015; 08/02/2015; 12/06/2015; 05/19/2016; 06/14/2016; 08/14/2016

Country Legends 1952-95 Felts Harris Killen Brown Ziebart Cover
  • Country Legends 1952-95 Felts Harris Killen Brown Ziebart
  • Country, Folk
  • Various Artists
  • 02/04/2016
  • Country Legends 1952-95 Felts Harris Killen Brown Ziebart
  1. Hey Pretty Mama <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  2. Cryin Blues <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  3. Forbidden Kisses <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  4. Another Love <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  5. Doll Upon the Shelf <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  6. All I Do Is Cry <span class="various">by Lee Felts</span>
  7. Kisses Sent by Letter <span class="various">by Gordon Harris</span>
  8. The Clouds Are Raining Teardrops... <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  9. Worried Blues <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  10. Lonesome Blues <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  11. Youll Never Cry Again <span class="various">by Lee Felts</span>
  12. Rose of Cherokee <span class="various">by Virge Brown</span>
  13. The Picture <span class="various">by Ked Killen</span>
  14. Rose of Cherokee <span class="various">by Cecil Ziebart</span>