Jay Snider was born into a ranching and rodeo family in southwest Oklahoma. Today, he makes his home in Cyril with his wife, Sandi. His dad was a top roper and rodeo cowboy; his granddad was a brand inspector for the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. Jay rodeoed during his early years. He now stays busy raising cattle and ranch horses and team roping.
Writing and reciting cowboy stories in verse since 1996, Jay says he’s not sure his English teacher would consider it poetry. Explaining the reason behind the pursuit, he says: “I’ve been researching the cowboy way for life for nearly 60 years. I felt a need to preserve some of the stories I heard from the old timers, and I wanted to try to relive some of my own experiences. Fortunately, cowboy poetry seems to appeal to most people. I thank God for the greatest super-hero of all times: the American Cowboy.”
Jay has appeared at many of the major cowboy gatherings: the Texas Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Alpine; Cal Farley’s Youth Poetry Gathering near Amarillo, Texas; National Cowboy Symposium in Lubbock, Texas; Arizona Cowboy Poets’ Gathering in Prescott; Kamloops Cowboy Festival in Kamloops, British Columbia; and four appearances at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, Elko, Nevada. He also appeared on Country Music Television’s Christmas in Cowboy Country, hosted by Clint Black.