About That Time Kenny Rogers Was Abducted by Aliens

When Kenny Rogers passed away on March 20, 2020, he left behind a legacy as a pop culture icon who was an actor, musician, restaurateur, and a gambler who knew when to hold ‘em, fold ‘em, walk away, or run.

But the country singer also made a mark in paranormal pop culture with “Planet Texas,” the second single from his 1989 album Something Inside So Strong. 

The tune is about a cowboy who encounters a trio of space dudes out of the sky with high-tech horses, domed helmets over their white hats, laser pistols, and anodized spurs. 

These cowboys weren’t common buckaroos of the human race, and instead - spoiler alert - came from Planet Texas. Throughout the course of the song, and the video directed by Julien Temple (known for his films featuring the Sex Pistols), the aliens take Kenny’s cowboy character on a horseback tour of Saturn’s rings, passing by John Denvers floating in space for some reason. 

They eventually hop on a tail of a comet and ride to Planet Texas, where Kenny signs his name on the planet’s surface, alongside other famous Texans Roy Orbison, LBJ, Waylon Jennings and, oddly enough, the fictional J.R. Ewing from Dallas. 

I don’t know if the implication is these famous Texans are actually of the same alien species, or if the space cowboys are simply such big fans that they periodically abduct Lone Star celebs, and fly them to the stars for an autograph and photo op. 

The $600,000 video aired on the televised special Something Inside So Strong, which also featured Dolly Parton, and Willie Nelson. But Kenny had plans for the Top 30 single beyond the music video. 

"It's the most unique piece of music I've heard in 20 years," Rogers told the Associated Press in 1989. "It may be a new genre. It has to do with space and time travel, but it's also a Western. These alien cowboys pick me up and take me to a planet called Texas.

"We may do this as a movie for NBC, but we're also toying with the idea of trying to attract a Stephen Spielberg or George Lucas and making it a feature film," he added. "It's such an unusual concept and offers the same limitless possibilities that The Gambler did."

Sadly, that movie never happened, but just maybe Kenny joined his fellow Texans in the big Lone Star State in the sky. 

Big thanks to Dave Schrader of The Holzer Files and Darkness Radio show for bringing this one to my attention. And thanks to Bobby Moore of Wide Open Country for unearthing this otherworldly country gem.