"The Ballad of High Noon"
Song by Tex Ritter
Composer(s)Dimitri Tiomkin
Lyricist(s)Ned Washington

"The Ballad of High Noon" (also known simply as "High Noon", or by its opening lyric and better known title, "Do Not Forsake Me, Oh My Darlin'") is a popular song published in 1952, with music by Dimitri Tiomkin and lyrics by Ned Washington.

It is the theme song of the 1952 multiple Academy Award-winning movie High Noon (and titled onscreen as such in the film's opening credits as sung by popular country music singer and actor Tex Ritter), with its tune repeated throughout the film. It was awarded the 1952 Academy Award for Best Original Song,[1] and was performed that night for the Academy by Ritter.[2] There were only three instruments accompanying Ritter on the soundtrack: guitar, accordion, and the Hammond Novachord, the first electronic synthesizer, which created an unusual gourd-like percussion background.[3]

The song appears at number 25 on "AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs". Members of the Western Writers of America chose it as one of the Top 100 Western songs of all time.[4][1] In 2023, it was included on the soundtrack of the film Asteroid City by Wes Anderson.[5]

Other versions


  1. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 134. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  2. ^ The Making of High Noon, hosted by Leonard Maltin, 1992, interview with John Ritter. Available on blu-Ray from Olive Films.
  3. ^ Liner notes, "High Noon" soundtrack, Screen Archives Entertainment, 2013.
  4. ^ Western Writers of America (2010). "The Top 100 Western Songs". American Cowboy. Archived from the original on 19 October 2010.
  5. ^ "Wes Anderson's Asteroid City Soundtrack Out from ABKCO Digitally Today". Focus Features. 23 June 2023.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1986). Joel Whitburn's Pop Memories 1890-1954. Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin: Record Research Inc. p. 370. ISBN 0-89820-083-0.