- Music written by
- Bill Simon
- Lyrics written by
- Badger Clark
- Publication date
This work is often misattributed as "traditional". The poem was originally published as "A Border Affair" in the June 1907 issue of "Pacific Monthly". It was republished in 1915 by Chapman & Grimes as part of a compilation of Clark's works entitled "Sun and Saddle Leather". The song ended up with several variant lyrics.
Although there has been some controversy about whether Bill Simon actually composed the tune, that is the consensus nowadays. Simon heard the poem, thought it would make a good song and worked out a tune, while riding the range as a cowboy. Some twenty to thirty years later somebody added a bridge to the music, which is how it is now typically played but, as with the lyrics, there is variation in the tune.
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