Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Tauer Perfumes Lonesome Rider and Lonestar Memories

Growing up in Fort Worth, Texas, the Stock Show and Rodeo was an eagerly anticipated annual event held every January. We actually got a school holiday to go rummage around the cattle barns and gaze at fantastically large pigs and prize-winning bulls. It's a testament to how easily entertained we were back then that we could make a day of this, along with some cotton candy, corn on the cob, and hot dogs. This is the oldest continually running stock show and rodeo in the United States, originating back in 1896. Our rodeo arena isn't too large so you can hear the pounding of the horse's hooves in the cutting competition or the bull's grunts as he struggles to extricate his rider. This is a true rodeo, unlike the sissified event our Houston neighbors hold, where binoculars are needed to see the participants and the crowds don't start arriving until the music concert at the end of the evening. This year I'm in Singapore, not Fort Worth, but January=Rodeo has been hammered into my head for many years now, and this took my thoughts to two particular perfumes, Tauer Perfumes Lonesome Rider and Lonestar Memories.

Lonesome Rider

The idea of the lone cowboy was a constant theme in the early Western movies. There was the well known Lone Ranger, but he had Tanto. Less well known were The Lone Rider movies starring Buck Henry, one man trying to right the wrongs and make the Wild West a safer place. The perfume Lonesome Rider holds to the idea of the solitary cowboy with its beautiful but somber notes and quiet presence.

Lonesome Rider opens with vibrant citrus notes of grapefruit and bergamot, but this moment is as brief as the last flash of the sun before it slips over the horizon. Notes of pepper and clove take the citrus to a darker place and before you know it a leather note pushes the brightness aside. Vetiver gives a whisper of smokey incense. Eventually a rooty iris note joins with the leather. There is also a rose note but I hardly notice it. It is the iris and leather combination which drive the perfume for the majority of its life on my skin. Sandalwood and ambergris will ground the scent as it eventually softens and fades but the iris is a prominent note for me until the very end. Lonesome Rider fulfills its promise of cloaking the wearer in a beautiful almost melancholy perfume which wears close to the skin and is for the personal pleasure of the wearer.

Andy Tauer, the Swiss-based and self-taught perfumer, created Lonesome Rider ten years after one of his earliest successes, Lonestar Memories. For me they are the yin and yang of cowboy inspired perfumes.

Lonestar Memories

Hello, old friend! I had forgotten  how crazy I was about you. That initial burst of bitter medicinals. The smell of leather from well worn cowboy boots only improved by the scuffs and dings, souvenirs of past good times. That smell of sweat from sweet skin which brings back a long ago memory of being a shy teenager and my date casually throwing his arm around me, providing an electric thrill as I breathed in the melange of clean laundered shirt, skin glistening with a light sheen of perspiration, and faint traces of cologne.

The opening of Lonestar Memories features notes of geranium, carrot seed, clary sage, and birchtar. There is the jolt of the unexpected when you first spray; slightly medicinal, bitter, and very dry. The birchtar adds a smokey tar smell. (When I put it on my husband's skin he said, "This is bitumen!") Almost immediately notes of leather appear. This is a dry, dusty leather, not buttery or supple. Just when you're not quite sure what to make of this scent, something stirs, a hint of sweetness or the promise of resins. Labdanum and a touch of jasmine add a wonderfully addictive smell that for me is the scent of sweet sweat. This combines with the leather to make a beautifully rich skin scent; a body clothed in leather boots and vest along with the tang from a sweaty shirt that has also absorbed some nature scents from the air. This has a familiar smell to me--weekend parties from my youth at someone's parent's ranch. Campfires, nearby grazing cows, cold beers, happy faces and starlit skies would be involved in the scenario.

The leather/labdanum/jasmine trio gains momentum and I can't stop smelling my wrist. The myrrh and tonka bean notes join in to add even more sweetness and resins. Vetiver, cedar, and sandalwood provide a smokey, woody landing spot. I get great longevity out of Lonestar Memories.

Unlike the quiet solitude of Lonesome Rider, Lonestar Memories calls for a party. It will draw people in like bees buzzing around a honeysuckle vine. It is laid-back sexy. I'll use one of our states more successful exports as an example, actor Matthew McConaughey. This scent isn't the young Matthew who got arrested for playing bongo drums naked, or the cool dude Matthew that used to throw frisbee on the beach with Lance Armstrong. This is the Matthew that took his Mama to the Oscars, that is a proud husband and father, that has developed a strong social conscience and exudes that air of "I'm comfortable in my skin." That is how Lonestar Memories strikes me and although it is unisex and I love wearing it, this is something I want to smell on my significant other. I think I know what he's getting for Valentine's Day!

A note on the art. Fort Worth is most known for the Kimbell Museum but my favorite culture spot is the Amon Carter Museum of National Art, which has a huge collection of masterpieces from two of the most famous artists of the cowboy era, Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell. If you ever come our way, have a look. Admission is always free.

*Note: Andy Tauer's web page is down until the end of the month. I will be adding his links after the page is back up.

Top photo by Frederic Remington. Movie poster from Google images. Bottom photo by Charles M. Russell. Perfume samples were my own. 


Pam aka Mom said...

Oh how I loved to escape to the Stock show and the parade. But our elementary school trips to Amon Carter and learning so many interesting things about Remington were the best. Miss you sweet friend.

Cynthia said...

Miss you too! Thanks for reading and commenting.