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This Ole House
|"This Ole House"|
|Single by Stuart Hamblen|
|from the album It Is No Secret|
|B-side||"When My Lord Picks Up the 'Phone"|
|Released||May 1954 (1954-05)|
|Recorded||29 March 1954|
|Studio||RCA Victor Studios, 155 East 24th Street, Manhattan, New York|
"This Ole House" (sometimes written "This Old House") is an American popular song written by Stuart Hamblen, and published in 1954. Rosemary Clooney's version reached the top of the popular music charts in both the US and the UK in 1954. The song again topped the UK chart in 1981 in a recording by Shakin' Stevens.
Stuart Hamblen version
Hamblem recorded the song in March 1954 and released it as a single in May 1954. It became very successful, peaking at number 2 on the Billboard Country & Western chart, as well as being a Top 30 hit on the Hot 100, known then as the Best Sellers in Stores. It was his last hit on the country charts and with the royalties he bought the mansion that had been owned by the late Errol Flynn.
Hamblen was supposedly out on a hunting expedition when he and his fellow hunter, actor John Wayne, came across a hut in the mountains. Inside was the body of a man, and the man's dog was still there, guarding the building. This inspired Hamblen to write "This Ole House". The lyric picks up a standard Gospel theme of the "old house" – the mortal body – being left behind when the soul of the believer goes to "meet the saints".
The single was reviewed twice in Billboard magazine. It was described as "a powerful religioso item with a message and an infectious beat. Hamblen sells it with fervor." and that it "could easily break thru into country and pop". In the following issue, it was described as "a sacred item which re-esablishes Hamblen as the top man in his field" and "a sock debut for Hamblen on the label."
Rosemary Clooney version
|"This Ole House"|
|Single by Rosemary Clooney with Buddy Cole & His Orchestra|
|A-side||"Hey There" (US)|
|Released||June 1954 (1954-06) (US)|
Soon after Hamblen released his version, Rosemary Clooney recorded a version of "This Ole House" with Buddy Cole & His Orchestra. It featured bass vocals by Thurl Ravenscroft and topped the charts in the US and the UK.
In the US, it was released as the flip side to "Hey There", which also reached number 1. However, in the UK, it was released as the A-side, with the flip side "My Baby Sends Me".
When reviewed in Billboard, it was described as "a bright, bouncy rendition from the thrush, supported solidly by an unbilled male singer and the Buddy Cole ork. Tho not as strong as the flip. it has a sparkle that could make It grab juke loot."
- "Hey There" – 2:57
- "This Ole House" – 2:18
- "This Ole House"
- "My Baby Sends Me"
Shakin' Stevens version
|"This Ole House"|
|Single by Shakin' Stevens|
|from the album This Ole House|
|B-side||"Let Me Show You How"|
|Released||20 February 1981 (1981-02-20)|
|Studio||Eden Studios. London|
|Genre||Rock and roll|
|Shakin' Stevens singles chronology|
In 1981, Welsh singer Shakin' Stevens covered the song for his album of the same name. It became very successful, topping the UK Singles Chart for three weeks, as well as being a hit in several other countries. It was re-released in 2005 as a double A-side with a cover of Pink's "Trouble" after his appearance in the TV show Hit Me Baby One More Time and reached No. 20 in the UK Singles Chart.
- 1954: Billie Anthony's version was a hit in the UK, peaking at number 4 in October
- 1954: Alma Cogan covered the song with pianist Felix King and was recorded in London on September 2, 1954. The song was released by EMI on the His Master's Voice label with the flip side "Skokiaan"
- 1954: Bing Crosby recorded the song in 1954 for use on his radio show and it was subsequently included in the CD Bing & Rosie: The Crosby-Clooney Radio Sessions (2010).
- 1955: The German version "Das alte Haus von Rocky Docky" was recorded by Bruce Low in 1955 and was covered by Peter Kraus in 1981
- 1960: Wilma Lee Cooper & Stoney Cooper on 7" b/w 'Heartbreak Street'
- 1962: Hovie Lister & The Statesmen Quartet on Stop, Look & Listen for the Lord
- 1963: Jimmy Dean on Everybody's Favorite
- 1964: Johnny Tillotson on The Tillotson Touch
- 1965: Cathedral Quartet on The Cathedral Quartet With Strings
- 1965: Wilf Carter on 32 Wonderful Years
- 1966: The Statler Brothers on Flowers on the Wall
- 1967: Mrs. Miller on The Country Soul of Mrs. Miller
- 1977: Bill Gaither Trio on My Heart Can Sing – The Inspiring Songs of Stuart Hamblen
- 1979: NRBQ released a rockabilly version on Kick Me Hard
- 1981: The Shadows on Hits Right Up Your Street (Instrumental)
- 1981: Shakin' Stevens had a No. 1 single in the UK and other countries
- 1984: Carl Perkins on Disciple in Blue Suede Shoes
- 1995: The Mom and Dads on Love Letters in the Sand
- 1998: Brian Setzer Orchestra on The Dirty Boogie
- 2000: George Younce on Out Front
- 2002: Jessica King on Where Angels Are
- 2003: Bette Midler recorded a cover in ballad form on her tribute album to Rosemary Clooney, Bette Midler Sings the Rosemary Clooney Songbook, and was included on her compilation Jackpot: The Best Bette in 2008.
- 2004: Loretta Lynn on Van Lear Rose
- 2006: Allison Durham Speer on This Old House
- 2007: Brenda Lee & Dolly Parton on Gospel Duets with Treasured Friends
- 2010: Ernie Haase & Signature Sound on A Tribute to the Cathedral Quartet
- 2011: Willie Nelson on Remember Me, Vol. 1
- 2016: Ray Stevens on Just a Closer Walk with Thee/Gospel Favorites
- 2017: Bill Gaither & Gloria Gaither & Colet Selwyn on Give The World A Smile
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- McNeil, W. K. (2013-10-18). Encyclopedia of American Gospel Music. Routledge. p. 172. ISBN 978-1-135-37700-7.
- See 2 Corinthians 5:1
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