"One Tin Soldier (Original Caste cover)" as written by Dennis Earle Lambert and Brian Potter....
Listen children to a story
That was written long ago
'Bout a kingdom on a mountain
And the valley folk below
On the mountain was a treasure
Buried deep beneath a stone
And the valley people swore
They'd have it for their very own

Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of Heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won't be any trumpets blowin'
Come the judgement day
On the bloody mornin' after
One tin soldier rides away

So the people of the valley
Sent a message up the asking for
The buried treasure
Tons of gold for which they'd kill
Came an answer from the kingdom
With our brothers we will share
All the secrets of our mountain
All the riches buried there


Now the valley cried with anger
Mount your horses
Draw your swords
And they killed the mountain people
So they won their just reward
Now they stood beside the treasure
On the mountain dark and red
Turned the stone and looked beneath it
'Peace on Earth' was all it said


Lyrics submitted by kmk_natasha

"One Tin Soldier" as written by Dennis Earle Lambert Brian Potter

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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One Tin Soldier (Original Caste cover) song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentOddly, Coven's first album, Witchcraft Destroys Minds and Reaps Souls, ended with a 13 minute satanic black mass. The first song on the album was titled Black Sabbath and the bass player's name was Oz Osborne. True! The album came out a year before the (famous) Ozzy's first band, Black Sabbath.
    offhandon November 04, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentwow! I really thought this song would have great comments...I guess it is a little dated. It is my second favorite song of all time.

    My 2 cent:

    It is about the greed and hatred in this world (the valley folk) who lash out at their neighbors (the mountain people) and kill for what they see as a "just cause" only to find that there is no just cause to take a life (peace on earth was all it said). There are many parallels to today's world...I have seen parallels done to 9/11, the war in Iraq, etc.. But this was originally written in the Vietnam era. As for the tin soldier I always took the tin soldier as he goes into battle shiny and pristine and comes out bent and tarnish, but I would be interested to hear others opinions.
    ltienkeon November 13, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment I agree with Itienke. I was hoping to find a great discussion happening here, and am sad there is not.

    I have listened to this song for a long time, hearing it first in the "Billy Jack" movie when I was pre-teen. Over the years I have thought a lot about its meaning, to me, and to the world in general.

    This song is one of the few to have the power to make me cry, still, after all these years.
    The 'tin soldier' mentioned in the song has always been a symbol of the soul-less human to me. Let me explain. He is shiny and polished, hollow and empty. Cheaply made, as tin is not a precious metal. Willing to be moved in any direction by whatever hand moves it, as a chess piece is dependent on this for movement.

    This representation of tin soldier/soul-less human gets connected by the ability of those few who are able to act without conscience or fear of retribution. That, to me is the 'tin soldier'. The person who is empty inside, and cheaply made.
    jasprstaron January 07, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis was in the movie Billy Jack and was the #1 most requested song on American Radio in 1972.
    kmk_natashaon April 14, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentgreat song, what does the tin soldier mean?
    sundevils#1on February 19, 2008   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI think the tin soldier is Jesus
    NedRoxon July 15, 2011   Link

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