I RIDE AN OLD PAINT

Posted on Posted in Breedloves's Folk Songs
I RIDE AN OLD PAINT
To dissect “I Ride an Old Paint” it may be helpful to understand some of the words used
in the song. When you catch a horse around a roundup wagon as the daylight is starting to
break in the east (you have to bend down so you can skyline the horse’s ears to know
where to throw your “hoolihan”). A multicolored horse is called “Paint” or a faithful “Old
Dan”. “Fiery” and “Snuffy” were more often used as adjectives to describe the way a
horse or another animal acted. Fiery would fire (buck) at any opportunity. Snuffy was
just touchy and had to snort whenever he was startled.
I ride an old paint, I lead an old dan
I’m goin’ to Montana to throw the hoolihan
They feed in the coulees, they water in the draw
Their tails are all matted, their backs are all raw
Ride around little dogies, ride around them slow
For the fiery and snuffy are rarin’ to go
Old Bill Jones had a daughter and a son
One went to college, the other went wrong
His wife, she got killed in a poolroom fight
But still he’s a-singin’ from mornin’ till night
When I die, take my saddle from the wall
Place it on my old pony, lead him out of his stall
Tie my bones to my saddle and turn our faces to the West
And we’ll ride the prairie we love the best
I ride an old paint, I lead an old dan
I’m goin’ to Montana to throw the hoolihan
They feed in the coulees, they water in the draw
Their tails are all matted, and their backs are all raw