An old cowboy 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-plowing through the ragged sky and up the cloudy draw

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 went through him as they thundered through the sky
For he saw the riders coming hard and he heard their mournful cry

Yippie yi ooh
Yippie yi yay
Ghost riders in the sky

Their faces gaunt, their eyes were blurred, their shirts all soaked with sweat
He's riding hard to catch that herd, but he ain't caught 'em yet
'Cause they've got to ride forever on that range up in the sky
On horses snorting fire
As they ride on hear their cry

As the riders loped on by him 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
Trying to catch the devil's herd, across these endless skies

Yippie yi ooh
Yippie yi yay

Ghost riders in the sky
Ghost riders in the sky
Ghost Riders in the sky


Lyrics submitted by snc8698

"(Ghost) Riders in the Sky" as written by Hughie Thomasson

Lyrics © BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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(Ghost) Riders in the Sky (Stan Jones cover) song meanings
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23 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI cant believe this only has one comment! the song is amazing, i think its about a message from these 'ghost riders' telling a guy that hes basically been a twat, anbd needs to change his actions

    great song
    Avatar-rockon March 22, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Commenthey guys lets remember johnny cash didn't write this song! it was written in 1948 by a guy called stan jones, but cash still did a cool cover of it
    tunes841on October 25, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAside from the fact that the lyrics, as presented here, contain errors, and the fact that Johnny Cash's version is one of over 200, it's a great song.

    See:

    secretspain.org/…

    for a collection of versions.
    JohnMD102on May 16, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentOK I can understand the Cowboys who have sinned and been doomed to a Hell of riding the range for eternity.

    But what could the Cows have possibly done to deserve the same fate?

    What sins could a cow possibly commit? Can anyone imagine a sinful cow? I certainly can't.

    BTW terrific song. Gives me shivers whenever I hear it.

    But I am still worried about the cows.
    Durangoon May 12, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is so badass! johnny is telling the story of a cowboy who looks up into the sky one night to see the ghosts of sinning cowboys who are condemned for eternity to chase the devil's cattle across the endless skies... one of which warns him to "change his ways" or becoming a better person, otherwise he will suffer their same fate.
    larnbearon April 10, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI don't know if this has been mentioned as I haven't read many of the posts, but this song is strikingly similar to the Celtic myth of The Wyld Hunt. It just has a Christian and old west bent to it.

    For those who don't know, here's the skinny:

    norse-mythology.org/the-wild-hunt/
    Clockeron August 04, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is awesome. its so.. epic. very visual. ive loved this song since i was a little kid.
    jinx_me6on December 20, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI cant believe this only has one comment! the song is amazing, i think its about a message from these 'ghost riders' telling a guy that hes basically been a twat, anbd needs to change his actions

    great song
    Avatar-rockon March 22, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh he's been a twat :D ?
    well thats deep
    Durang0on March 30, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentoh shup.
    i was probly high, gimme some slack.
    you got what i meant anyway.
    Avatar-rockon June 23, 2006   Link

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