Blacky Ranchette is the alter ego of Howe Gelb, leader of the post-punk country-rock band Giant Sand. He formed the Band of Blacky Ranchette in the mid-'80s as a way to explore straight country music, but the group's three albums nevertheless resonated with Gelb's Neil Young and Gram Parsons obsessions. The Band of Blacky Ranchette's eponymous debut album was released on New Rose Records in 1985. Its follow-up, Heartland, appeared on Zippo Records in 1986. Four years later, the group released its third and final effort, Sage Advice; this time, their record label was Demon.