(Ghost) Riders in the Sky: A Cowboy Legend

(Ghost) Riders In The Sky: A Cowboy Legend

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(Ghost) Riders in the Sky: A Cowboy Legend

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"(Ghost) Riders in the Sky: A Cowboy Legend'" is a country and cowboy-style song. It was written on June 5, 1948 by Stan Jones. A number of versions were crossover hits on the pop charts in 1949. The ASCAP database lists the song as "Riders in the Sky" (title code: 480028324

The song tells a folk tale of a cowboy who has a vision of red-eyed, steel-hooved cattle thundering across the sky, being chased by the spirits of damned cowboys. One warns him that if he does not change his ways, he will be doomed to join them, forever "trying to catch the Devil's herd across these endless skies". Jones said that he had been told the story when he was 12 years old by an old cowboy friend. The story resembles the northern European mythic Wild Hunt.

More than 50 performers have recorded versions of the song. Charting versions were recorded by The Outlaws, Vaughn Monroe ("Riders in the Sky" with orchestra and vocal quartet), by Bing Crosby (with the Ken Darby Singers), Frankie Laine, Burl Ives, (two different versions), Marty Robbins, The Ramrods and Johnny Cash. Other recordings were...
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