Former Forest Ranger Stan Jones wrote "(Ghost) Riders in the Sky," a hit big enough that it crossed over from country-western charts to standard pop music. A chance meeting with Jones led Gene Autry to buy the rights to the song, and he gave Jones a part in the film. A nearly-complete Autry movie, Beyond the Purple Hills (1950), was quickly retooled to include the song. Jones himself appears as a cowboy riding herd with Autry in the opening and closing scenes, singing along with Gene's rendition of the spooky song. That same year Vaughn Monroe had topped the charts with his version (#1 US Pop for 22 weeks). Over the years many others have recorded it, including Peggy Lee, Willie Nelson, Frankie Laine, Johnny Cash, The Marshall Tucker Band and The Doors. Jones would later compose the title song to the classic TV western series Cheyenne (1955).
Oh, ah, say Gene, you didn't have no trouble gettin' the, ah...
Gene Autry: Got the money right here in my pocket - a roll big enough to choke Champ on.
Chuckwalla Jones: Oh, don't give him no ideas. He'd eat it, too, if it was green enough.
When Gene puts McCleary in the stage at the end of their fight, it appears that McCleary still has a gun in his holster.