Arizona’s Official Balladeer Dolan Ellis

According to the Dictionary of American History, a ballad is a short narrative set to song and American ballads often glorify cowboys, lumberjacks, and other working-class people. A balladeer is a person who sings ballads; a balladeer may also be known as a troubadour. 

Dolan Ellis was born in Kansas but quickly embraced Arizona as home in 1959. A consummate solo performer and writer of over 300 songs, Ellis was a member of the Grammy award winning New Christy Minstrels. Originally appointed to the post in 1966 by Arizona Governor Sam Goddard, Dolan Ellis is Arizona's official state balladeer. 

Find more Dolan Ellis on his YouTube channel.


"Dolan Ellis, Arizona's Official State Balladeer." Dolan Ellis, Arizona's Official State Balladeer. 

Arizona Folklore Preserve in partnership with University of Arizona South.

Mosby, R. P. (2003). Ballads. In S. I. Kutler (Ed.), Dictionary of American History (3rd ed., Vol. 1, pp. 388-389). New York, NY: Charles Scribner's Sons. Retrieved from Gale in Context: U.S. History at

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