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This Ole House: Wikis


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"This Ole House" (sometimes written "This Old House") is a popular song written by Stuart Hamblen, and published in 1954.[1]



Hamblen was supposedly out on a hunting expedition when he and his fellow hunter, actor John Wayne, came across a tumbledown hut in the mountains, many miles from civilization.[1] They went into the hut and there, lying amongst the rubbish and rubble of a crumbling building, was the body of a dead man.[1] This inspired Hamblin to write "This Ole House", which Rosemary Clooney and later Shakin' Stevens, treated as a bouncy novelty number, rather than the epitaph for a mountain man that it was meant to be.[1]

Recording success

The recorded version of "This Ole House" by Rosemary Clooney, featuring bass vocals by Thurl Ravenscroft, reached #1 on the Billboard chart in 1954. Clooney's version also topped the UK Singles Chart, although there were other UK hit versions around by Billie Anthony, and Alma Cogan, both recorded in 1954. The recording by Cogan was released by HMV as catalogue number 7M 269. The flip side was "Skokiaan".

In March 1981, Shakin' Stevens took the song back to number one for three weeks in the United Kingdom. His version was re-released in 2005, after his appearance in the TV show Hit Me Baby One More Time, and reached number 20 in the UK chart.

The song was also covered by the Cathedral Quartet and Hovie Lister and the Statesmen as a Southern Gospel song with slightly modified lyrics, using the house as an analogy for an old body about to die and the soul about to go to heaven, usually tying the song in with "When the Saints Go Marching In".

The song was most recently recorded by Bette Midler on her "Jackpot: The Best Bette" album in 2008.

Recorded versions


  1. ^ a b c d Rice, Jo (1982). The Guinness Book of 500 Number One Hits (1st ed.). Enfield, Middlesex: Guinness Superlatives Ltd. p. 15. ISBN 0-85112-250-7.  

External links

Preceded by
"My Son, My Son" by Vera Lynn
UK Singles Chart number-one single (Rosemary Clooney version)
November 26, 1954
Succeeded by
"Let's Have Another Party" by Winifred Atwell
Preceded by
"Jealous Guy" by Roxy Music
UK Singles Chart number-one single (Shakin' Stevens version)
28 March 1981 - 11 April 1981
Succeeded by
"Making Your Mind Up" by Bucks Fizz
Preceded by
"Jealous Guy" by Roxy Music
Australian Kent Music Report number-one single (Shakin' Stevens version)
June 8, 1981
Succeeded by
"Bette Davis Eyes" by Kim Carnes

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