Radio Favorites – One Tin Soldier

Peace on Earth

As a record collector, I went out and hunted down a lot of my favorites but obviously came nowhere near getting them all. These are some of the favorites that I didn’t own at the time.

“One Tin Soldier” is the quintessential anti-war song for the late 60s. It was written by Dennis Lambert and Brian Potter and first released in 1969 by the Canadian pop group The Original Caste. The song made number 34 on the Billboard Hot 100 and 25 on the Adult Contemporary charts.

The Original Caste
  • Dixie Lee Innes – Vocals
  • Bruce Innes – Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
  • Graham Bruce – Bass
  • Joseph Cavender – Drums
  • Bliss Mackie – Guitar, Vocals

The 1971 cover was also excellent, featured in the movie Billy Jack and performed by Coven. Reaching a little higher, number 26 on the Billboard Top Pop chart. In 1972 Skeeter Davis would cover it and reach number 4 on the Country chart and number 2 on the Adult Contemporary charts.

The song is about the warlike valley people who want the treasure of the peaceful mountain people. The mountain people offer to share their treasure but the valley people kill them to have it all to themselves. After overturning the stone and reaching the treasure it is simply inscribed “Peace on Earth”. The Coven version is really solo by Jinx Dawson, but she asked that the soundtrack be listed as Coven.

While I have always loved this song by The Orginal Caste and Coven I have never owned the single. Maybe one day I’ll pick it up.


The cartoon for this Cher cover was drawn by John David Wilson

Lyrics

Listen children to a story
That was written long ago
‘Bout a kingdom on a mountain
And the valley folk below
On the mountain was a treasure
Buried deep beneath a stone
And the valley people swore
They’d have it for their very own

[Chorus]Go ahead and hate your neighbor
Go ahead and cheat a friend
Do it in the name of Heaven
You can justify it in the end
There won’t be any trumpets blowin’
Come the judgement day
On the bloody mornin’ after
One tin soldier rides away

So the people of the valley
Sent a message up the asking for
The buried treasure
Tons of gold for which they’d kill
Came an answer from the kingdom
With our brothers we will share
All the secrets of our mountain
All the riches buried there

[Chorus]

Now the valley cried with anger
Mount your horses
Draw your swords
And they killed the mountain people
So they won their just reward
Now they stood beside the treasure
On the mountain dark and red
Turned the stone and looked beneath it
‘Peace on Earth’ was all it said

[Chorus]

Author: Doyle

I was born in Atlanta, moved to Alpharetta at 4, lived there for 53 years and moved to Decatur in 2016. I've worked at such places as Richway, North Fulton Medical Center, Management Science America (Computer Tech/Project Manager) and Stacy's Compounding Pharmacy (Pharmacy Tech).

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