Cameron Keaton, the Barrel Man, at this past weekend's UPRA Rodeo, shared some of his inspirations
and life on the road.
Rodeo "Funny Man" Shares His Life
by: Bobby McDonald
"Serving as a rodeo 'barrel and funny man' is what I do!" explains Oklahoma native, Cameron Keaton, as he talked about his role in this past weekend's UPRA Rodeo, hosted in the Hopkins County Civic Center. "It fits my personality, well, as I've always enjoyed making people laugh and being a part of rodeo!"
Keaton, in a Saturday afternoon interview, revealed that he's been around rodeo practically all of his 45 years. "I was reared on a beef cattle ranch in Kingston, Oklahom, where I grew up around cattle and horse, and then when I was about 13 years of age, I started riding junior bulls in rodeos," explained Keaton, as he discussed his start in rodeo. "Then, by the time I was about 19 years old, I had decided that I would rather be a bullfighter, and began a career that lasted until my early thirties! It was my job to protect the cowboys and to make certain that all my buddies got off the bulls and out of the way!"
However, it was an injury, that "messed up" Keaton's knees, at age 33, that put him on the sidelines of rodeo, for a "spell." "It was during my recovery from knee surgery, that someone suggested that I give the 'funny man' role a try!" advised Keaton. "And, I guess the rest is history, as I've been doing it for about 12 years and continue to love it all!"
Cameron Keaton, didn't look like the rodeo funny man, as he drew for some of the door prizes, at
Saturday afternoon's Pre-Rodeo Party.
Keaton states that he gets most of his jokes and funny episodes from many of the people that he encounters on the road. "There's always someone telling me a good joke, or sharing something will me that turns out to be something funny, and that I can use in my delivery," stated Cameron. "And, then you're always scanning the internet and other places, as you look for fresh material, that can be adapted to the rodeo arena!"
Keaton kept the rodeo moving and the crowd laughing, each of the three night of the rodeo here in Sulphur Springs, and states that he traveled to rodeos in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, New Mexico, and even Nebraska, last year. "I enjoy the travel, meeting new people, and seeing all of my friends," related Cameron, as he described his job. "And, it's always great to share a good laugh with the crowd, a most of us don't take near enough time to laugh!"
Keaton, who now makes his home in Whitesboro, Texas, just may be at your next rodeo, and if he is, you can bet he'll have something fun to tell you! Look for him to return back to Sulphur Springs for the November UPRA Finals!
Cameron got in his trailer full of clothes, makeup, and began preparing about an hour before the
performances, to being laughter to the crowd.
Enjoy these photos from some of Cameron's performances over the weekend in Sulphur Springs: