Calgary, AB: This article should probably be published in the Canadian Rodeo News and anywhere else that will take it as Brett Gardiner, The 2011 CPRA Announcer of the Year is someone who is making a big splash in the rodeo world that needs to be talked about in my opinion. Brett’s Auntie Joyce, who is also my Auntie Joyce looked through the entire December Edition of the Canadian Rodeo News looking for a story about him. Once she was through it and didn’t find one she asked me about it and I told her I hope they get one for the January Issue but if they didn’t I’m putting this one together.
So I hope she gets the chance to see it and that everyone else gets to as well. I asked Brett a few questions before the holidays though and today he got back to me with his answers.
Here they are:
1.) TS: Brett, like we talked about in Stettler 2011 was your best year yet. What would you say the highlight of your year was? You know besides November 11th when you got your new buckle?
BG: 2011 truly was a wonderful year, there were so many highlights. It was the first year I was given the opportunity to work on the PBR Canada Cup tour when I worked events in both London Ontario and Halifax Nova Scotia. I also had the opportunity to work some new events on both the CPRA and PBR events schedule. As well as being chosen to work as the finals announcer in numerous associations across the province. With that, one of the new events I was able to be a part of on the PBR touring event in Elnora Alberta that took place August 6th, while there I had the once in a lifetime opportunity to work with one of my hero’s and one of the sports true icons in Bob Tallman, to work with someone who is so often referred to as the “World’s Greatest Rodeo Announcer” was an absolute dream come true. And then to get the call that I had won the Canadian Pro Rodeo Announcer of the Year and then five days later my wife and I welcomed our second child, a baby girl named Hadley Megan, it truly was an incredible way to top off just a great year.
2.) TS: August 6th, 2011 was another day this year that probably stood out. What was the significance of that sunny Central Alberta Evening?
BG: It truly was an incredible evening, to work alongside a true legend, it was almost one of those surreal days, I mean I had always hoped to have an opportunity to work with Mr. Bob Tallman I just never thought it would be this early in my career. To be able to see first hand how the most successful announcer of all time prepares and presents truly was an experience. And as I still find myself looking back at it, I feel as though I learned more beforehand than during the event itself, I don’t know if I have ever met someone who can enter a room, have everyone’s attention, make them feel important and when he leaves that room everyone feels like they met a new friend, and even better, he feels the same way. He showed me that this job is just more than talking at people, he made every person involved feel special, whether you were selling popcorn, cracking latches or you paid for your ticket, it didn’t matter some how he made it special and me included he made it so easy for me to work with him, but I truly believe that is what makes him so great, he has this incredible ability to make everyone around him better.
3.) TS: We’ve talked about goals before Brett and from the way you talk about being an announcer and the sport of rodeo you have the desire to be one of the best announcers in the whole rodeo world. After spending some time at the NFR too I listened to the different contestants and many of them lived up to what they expected from the NFR. Some were quite happy with winning a round, or placing where some weren’t focused at all on winning rounds their focus was on winning multiple world championships. Either way it was everyone seemed to live up to their expectations of what they thought they could do. It’s not a bad thing I am just saying everyone has different desires. I’m going to bet your goals are quite high though. Where do you see yourself going in the next 3 years? Or where would you like to go?
BG: Your right, I do have some pretty lofty goals for myself which I think comes primarily from my athletic days which have since passed, but I still find myself with a pretty competitive outlook. And the fact is I really feel lucky to be a part of the industry, and I want to help this industry continue to grow in our Country and I believe the better I do my job the better I will be able to accomplish that. When I first started 7 or 8 years I ago my goal was to both work the Wild Rose finals and have a pro rodeo in Canada by the time I was 30 years old, I was lucky enough to work the Wild Rose finals in 2005, there for the first time I worked with another of my heros and just an incredible man in David Poulsen, and with thanks to him he helped me secure my first pro rodeo in 2006 when we worked together again at the Medicine Hat Stampede. So I was again very fortunate to accomplish those goals, from there it was to continue to improve and increase the number and noteriaty of events, as I was able to have the oppurtunity to work more CPRA events my new goal was to one day be voted the CPRA Announcer of the Year, and luckily enough I was very fortunate enough to do that this year. And now my goals revolve around making improvements. I take a lot of pride in the job I do and I want to do the best job I can do and that involves trying to get better everyday. And ultimately it is about getting to that next level, that level of great Canadian events such as Ponoka, Strathmore, and Calgary as well as the Tour Finale and the PBR Canadian Finals and of course to one day work the Canadian Finals Rodeo. So goals, yeah I have lots, and I hope one day I can accomplish them all. Will I accomplish any of them in the next three years, I’m not sure, it could take thirty, or may never happen but that’s alright, to have already been lucky enough to be a part of this sport and have had some success, it could all be over tomorrow and I would be OK with that.
4.) TS: Stettler Dodge has sure stepped up this year to work with you and help out your cause. Is there anything you’d like to add about them?
BG: Stettler Dodge has been great, it would probably be five or six years now, when I first worked a bull riding in Halkirk, AB, and that is where I first met Kelly Hicks and his wife Rena (who I must say is one of the best anthem singers I have had the pleasure to work with). Kelly who owns the dealership was a title sponsor at the event, later that year I worked an event in Stettler and again Kelly was there as a spectator and supporter, again having the opportunity to have a conversation with him, I just really had respect for him and how he went about his business and how he supported our industry. So in 2008 I needed a new truck so I went to see Kelly and his staff, they were all really great to work with, and made sure I drove away with the very best deal. Then in March of this year we came to new joint promotional agreement and I started driving my first Stettler Dodge sponsored truck at that time. It has been a great partnership and I am proud to recommend Stettler Dodge to anyone and everyone. Kelly along with their sales manager Darren Benson along with their service department really have been just awesome, I’m very lucky and very proud to be a part of the Stettler Dodge team.
Brett and I were able to catch up in Stettler, AB at the EPB Event there in mid November some of the content from the video and the above article overlap but they are both great. So if you’ve got time, I hope that you get to read the article above and watch this video too. If you’ve never met Brett or been involved with him at a rodeo somewhere, putting both together will get you a much greater appreciation for what he does.
Brett mentioned getting the chance to work with Bob Tallman this summer in Elnora, AB here’s a video from the Calgary Stampede this summer where Alanna Nolan was able to chat with Mr. Tallman. Brett is planning to talk to Bob about this article so we can hopefully expand on this one once we get the chance. I am really looking forward to that conversation if it happens!
Thank you all for reading more about Brett and Mr. Tallman. This may very well be the last addition to this version of Everything-Cowboy.com before the site changes over to the new look. What a great way to finish it off.
In the comment section below I’d first of all like to hear how many of you have heard Brett or Mr. Tallman before at a rodeo. Second I’d like to know what your favorite story of 2011 was if you could share I would sure like to know!