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Ballad Of Bill Thaxton Lyrics

Artist: Marty Robbins
Album: El Paso City

Bill Thaxton was an ex-ranger one of the bravest by far
It's said that old Bill was the fastest man ever to pin on a ranger's star
Stories about him were legends Bill was the best of the bold
Bad men all feared him way back in his day but he was now growing old

Into Bill's town rode an outlaw he wore his gun low and tied down
He reined in his horse and announced to the crowd if you speak to me call me Sundown
His clothes were all dark and fancy and topped by a black leather vest
Somebody asked how he came by his name and if he was one of the best

The eyes of the tall stranger narrowed he grinned like the devil possessed
I never fight till the sun's going down and my back is facing the West

Said he wouldn't be with us tomorrow he only rode in for one thing
He only stopped by to make Bill Thaxton die so he could add to his fame
Go give Bill Thaxton a message and tell him a killer's in town
Tell him we'll meet at the end of the street just as the sun's going down

Somebody said it had been years since old Bill had toted a gun
Sundown replied that it wasn't his hide killing old Bill would be fun
The old ranger sent back his answer tell him that I'm on my way
I've never ran and I'll meet this young man at any time of the day

Bill got there just about sunset it still hung like fire in the sky
In just a few moments out there in the street old Bill or the outlaw would die

Slowly Bill slid from the saddle and started to make his advance
The sun hit the old ranger square in the eyes the shadows had started to dance
Bill started talking to Sundown judging his distance that way
Their stride was the same and at just thirty feet both of the men made their play

Bill's gun slipped leather like lightning his forty-four spoke with a whine
The sun didn't bother Bill Thaxton at all cause the old ranger was blind
Six shots delivered their message the ranger had emptied his gun
Bill gave a sigh when there was no reply he knew that once more he had won

The old ranger lowered his six gun he just stood there starting ahead
Watching you'd think that old Bill didn't know in front of him Sundown lay dead

Bill has been gone for a long time but old timers still can recall
The day the old ranger stood up to the test and proved he was best of them all
Comments/Interpretations
by Richard C. Knudson (Holladay, UT.) on 6/5/2008 12:13am
This ballad is absolutely one of the very best ever recorded by Marty. D.J.'s should play this daily until it is as well known as
"El Paso", another terrific ballad.


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