Now this is how you fix a drink. Just add one part tequila, one part entrepreneur and one part country star. Mix it up in Texas. And voila, Lone River premium brewed beverages are ready to make their mark on the world of refreshing canned cocktails.
Lone River founder Katie Beal Brown and fellow Texan native Miranda Lambert have just announced a multiyear partnership, not just to promote the brand, but to promote the dreams of other small businesses with like-minded women at the helm.
“Miranda Lambert is the kind of person who makes me proud to be a Texan. Through her iconic career in country music and beyond, she’s played such an important part in modernizing the ideals of the American West,” Beal Brown says. “She sent me a note describing our partnership as ‘right and real’ and I had the exact same feeling. She is the embodiment of the trailblazing spirit that built our business, and it is a dream to have the opportunity to see our brand through her eyes.”
Beal Brown started Lone River in part to combine the traditions of the West with the spirit of modern country, and manifested the brand with her do-it-your-own-way ethos.
“Lone River Ranch Water comes from a real place and real people. My family settled in West Texas over 100 years ago. We are deeply rooted here in the birthplace of the ranch water cocktail and we set out to tell the story of where it comes from and the culture it represents,” Beal Brown explains. “I think there is an authenticity to the story behind our brand that is hard to replicate and something that has really resonated with consumers. There isn’t a lot of storytelling in our category,” she shared, “and it is something I believe has helped us deepen the connection with consumers to build loyalty. As I started to see the cocktail popularized throughout Texas and across the U.S., I wanted to ensure that where it comes from and the culture around it did not get lost.”
Here, Lambert shares how she knew her collaboration with Beal Brown was “right and real.”
For anyone who doesn’t know your story, how would you describe your career since you started singing at the Reo Palm Isle dance hall in Texas when you were still in high school?
Miranda Lambert: It’s definitely been an amazing journey! I’ve gotten to achieve so many of the goals I set out to achieve and do some things I never thought I would get to do. I can’t believe it’s been 25 years since I started down this path, but to be honest, sometimes I feel like I’m just getting started. I still have a lot more to do.
Along the way, it seems like you’ve used your fame for good works, mainly with MuttNation. So this is a switch for you, to partner with a beverage brand. Have you been approached by sponsors before? How was this opportunity different?
ML: I love that I get to use my platform for something I’m really passionate about. MuttNation is so important to me. It’s been really fun to see how my fans rally around our cause for shelter animals. As far as partnerships go, it just really has to make sense and feel authentic if I’m going to team up with another brand. I want it to align with everything we are about and be something I truly enjoy. And timing is everything. Sometimes things just fall into place because they are meant to be.
Was the fact that Lone River mirrored your own career—a woman from Texas building something big that leans on her deep Texas roots—one of the deciding factors?
ML: Yes, the Texas connection was definitely a big factor. It seems like we have a lot in common as far as our ethics, our drive and staying true to who we are. I think a lot of that comes from how we both grew up, knowing the value of hard work and having a sense of pride in what we share with the world.
And you’re not just loaning out your name, right? It sounds like you and Katie [Beal Brown] will be planning luncheons and networking events for female entrepreneurs all over the country. What are your hopes for that part of the partnership?
ML: I’m very excited to meet other amazing women and learn about their paths and stories. I’ve always tried to lift up other women within the music industry, and I’m thrilled that we’ll have the chance to do that in even more ways. There is so much we can all learn from each other, too.
Katie only launched Lone River four years ago, and from the start, she wanted to get you to collaborate. That says so much about her determination and conviction. How does that make you feel, knowing you were on her wish list from day one?
ML: It’s an honor to know that the brand we’ve built over the years and everything I stand for is something she respected so much that she wanted to join forces. I’m very proud she thought of me and I hope this leads to a lot of cool things we can do together.
Your Texas roots really matter to you. It’s not just where you’re from; it’s who you are. Can you talk about why your upbringing in Lindale [, Texas] still means the world to you?
ML: I’m a very proud Texan! Lindale was such a great place to grow up. It was a typical small town with Friday night football and church on Sunday morning. I think that foundation is the reason I’ve been able to stay grounded and really push through some of the hard parts of this career path.
Outside of the music and the rescue-dog philanthropy, you’ve had side hustles along the way: your Red 55 Winery in Lindale, your Pink Pistol shop, your Idyllwind line of apparel and, most recently, your Nashville [, Tennessee] bar Casa Rosa. Is this new venture just one more way you’re branching out and making “Miranda Lambert” stand for something even bigger than the music you make?
ML: For me, it all starts with the music and everything else is an extension of that. I’m proud of what we’ve built in country music and that we are able to use that to branch out and share a complete lifestyle with our fans. It also allows me to stretch my creativity in new ways and stay inspired, which benefits the music, too.
How do you maintain the coveted work/life balance when so much of what you’re doing is work-related: making country music, working on these outside ventures, seeking out passion projects and now helping give women in and out of Texas something to strive for?
ML: I have learned to balance a lot better in the last few years than I did in my early days. It gets hard sometimes to figure that out, but it’s so important to live a little and really take a breather.
What’s your favorite Lone River Ranch Water? And how do you drink it? Out of the can, over ice, with a splash of something extra?
ML: I like them all for different reasons! I love that we can have a great drink in a can because it makes it easy to stock up backstage or when we’re out in the Airstream—and I’m excited to have them to float the river this summer. They also work as a great mixer with a little extra something!
This new partnership is just further proof that the women of Texas have all kinds of things in common. In Lambert and Beal Brown’s case, there’s the love of Texas, ranch water and music.
“It is such a dream to have the opportunity to work with someone I not only respect but whose music has inspired so much of my journey,” Beal Brown says. “Her album [The] Marfa Tapes hits close to home for me (it was recorded just miles from our ranch) and will always be a favorite.”
Watch Lambert sing the praises of Lone River’s main ingredient in Tequila Does:
Photos courtesy of Lone River