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Johnny Cash performs "Ghost Riders In the Sky"Live Video.

Johnny Cash performs "Ghost Riders In the Sky"Live Video.

"(Ghost) Riders in the Sky: A Cowboy Legend" is a cowboy-styled country/western song written in 1948 by American songwriter, film and television actor Stan Jones.

The tune sounds similar to "Spancil Hill" (traditional Irish folk song by Michael Considine, Irish emigrant to the United States in the 1870s).

 A number of versions were crossover hits on the pop charts in 1949, the most successful being by Vaughn Monroe.The title has been written as "Ghost Riders", "Ghost Riders in the Sky", and "A Cowboy Legend". Members of the Western Writers of America chose it as one of the Top 100 Western songs of all time

(Ghost) Riders in the Sky

An old cowpoke went riding out one dark and windy day

Upon a ridge he rested as he went along his way

When all at once a mighty herd of red eyed cows he saw

A-plowin' through the ragged skies and up a cloudy draw

 

Yippee-yi-ya, yippee-yi-yo

Ghost herd in the sky

 

Their brands were still on fire and their hooves were made of steel

Their horns were black and shiny and their hot breath he could feel

A bolt of fear shot through him as he looked up in the sky

For he saw the riders comin' hard and he heard their mournful cry

 

Yippee-yi-ya, yippee-yi-yo

Ghost riders in the sky

 

Their faces gaunt, their eyes were blurred, their shirts all soaked with sweat

They're riding hard to catch that herd, but they ain't caught 'em yet

'Cause they've got to ride forever on that range up in the sky

On horses snortin' fire, as they ride on hear their cry

 

Yippee-yi-ya, yippee-yi-yo

Ghost riders in the sky

 

The cowpokes loped on past him and he heard one call his name

If you want to save your soul from hell a-riding on our range

Then cowboy, change your ways today or with us you will ride

A-trying to catch the devil's herd across these endless skies


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