Western Song: Ballad of Paladin
The Ballad of Paladin is a song written by Johnny Western, Richard Boone, and Sam Rolfe and performed by Duane Eddy. In 1962, the song reached No. 10 on the UK Singles Chart and No. 33 on the Billboard Hot 100. Members of Western Writers of America voted Ballad of Paladin in the Top 100 Western songs of all time. Eddy’s flip side is the theme in the American Western film, The Wild Westerners. Lee Hazlewood produced the song while and Bob Thompson arranged it. American drummer Earl Palmer played in the session. The song has been used heavily as well in the film Stand by Me.
Other versions of the song have been recorded as well and performed by the following artists:
- In 1958, Johnny Western recorded the original version that became the regular theme to the television show Have Gun – Will Travel. His co-writers were the stars and creators of the show. Years later, Western recorded a parody, The Ballad of Palindrome, with the western swing and comedy group Riders in the Sky.
- In 1962, American guitarist, composer, and arranger Al Caiola released a version as part of an EP.
- In 1963, American country music producer, singer, and songwriter Faron Young also released a version as part of an EP.
- Lawrence Welk and His Champagne Music Makers as well as Chuck Wagon & The Wheels recorded their own versions as well.
Ballad of Paladin In Albums
The song has been released and included in the tracklist of different albums such as:
- T.V. Western Theme Songs by Lawrence Welk
- Faron Young Aims at the West
- Please Pass the Gas by Chuck Wagon & The Wheels
- Johnny Western Sings 20 Great Classics & Legends
Listen (Johnny Western Version)
Ballad of Paladin Lyrics
Paladin, Paladin Where do you roam Paladin, Paladin Far, far from home. Have gun will travel Reads the card of a man A knight without armor In a savage land. His fast gun for hire Heeds the calling wind A soldier of fortune Is the man called Paladin. Paladin, Paladin Where do you roam Paladin, Paladin Far, far from home. He travels on To wherever he must A chess knight of silver Is his badge of trust. There are campfire legends That the plainsmen spin Of the man with the gun Of the man called Paladin. Paladin, Paladin Where do you roam Paladin, Paladin Far, far from home. Far from home Far from home...