Sung by: James Clifton Ferrell

Click here to listen to the original recording

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,
Plundering through the rugged skies
And up a cloudy draw.

Chorus: Yippee aye a-a-a-a-a,
Yippee aye o-o-o.
Ghost riders in the sky.

Their horns were black and shiny,
And their hooves were made of steel,
Their brands were still on fire,
And their hot breath he could feel.
As the cows loped on by him,
He heard one call his name,
Rolling through this rugged sky
And up the cloudy draw.


As the cowboys 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 this devil herd
Up in this endless sky."

(Chorus, sung twice with last line of second time being "Ghost herd up in the sky.")

All Songs Recorded by John Quincy Wolf, Jr., unless otherwise noted

The John Quincy Wolf Folklore Collection
Lyon College, Batesville, Arkansas
Back to the Song Index
Back to the Wolf Collection Homepage
©Copyright 2002 Lyon College