Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ Highlights Youth Rockstars in 2019 Rodeo Rockstar Competition

Fifteen outstanding talents took The Junction Stage for an intense final round of the 2019 Rodeo Rockstar competition at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.


The young musicians covered an array of genres as they battled for the Rodeo Rockstar titles. Winners received $1,000, a spot in the 2020 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Downtown Rodeo Parade and a day in the recording studio with a producer and vocal coach to help them make three tracks.


In the junior division, it was 14-year-old Dakota Mata who walked away as the winner. The School of Rock student seemed more like the teacher during her energetic performance of the Pat Benatar song, “Heartbreaker.”


“When I go on stage, everything just melts away,” Mata said. “It is one of the best feelings ever.”


Mata said the win has given her the confidence, and money, she needed to show others her original work.


In the senior division, it was 21-year-old Joey Keenan taking home the championship. Keenan made the crowd melt with his performance of an original song, “Lost.”


“I know other people tell me I am talented and can sing, but I needed to prove to myself that I can go out there and win something.”


Keenan, who has been singing since age 12, said this competition and the opportunity it has provided will allow him to pursue his dreams.


“I really want to start a music career, in the studio and on tour, and this is the first step,” Keenan said. “My next step is getting my originals on an EP, and get some exposure.”


The group division title belonged to Courtney Eoff, 18, and Cole Rickman, 16, after their beautiful rendition of Keith Urban’s “Making Memories of Us.”


The perfectly synced and harmonized duo sang together for the first time in October, and the Rodeo Rockstar Competition was only their second time to preform together.


Cole said his favorite thing about their performance was the energy he felt on stage. Courtney said she loved the preparation for competition and the support she felt from her family and friends.


“This showed us all of our hard work paid off,” Courtney said. “It is really rewarding because our small town does not have any opportunities like this.”