Wagon Wheels
Western Music
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Western Song: Wagon Wheels

American songwriter Billy Hill and composer Peter DeRose wrote the Western song “Wagon Wheels” in the early 1930s. Everett Marshall first performed the song live in the stage production Ziegfeld Follies of 1934. On the other hand, its first recording and release as a single were by Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra in 1934. It was also the title song of the 1934 Western film Wagon Wheels, starring actors Randolph Scott and Gail Patrick.

Various artists recorded their versions of the song. Its most well-known version was by the Sons of the Pioneers, released on their album entitled Cool Water.

Members of the Western Writers of America added “Wagon Wheels” to their list of the Top 100 Western songs of all time.

About Wagon Wheels

Charles Barton directed the 1934 Western movie Wagon Wheels, starring American actor Randolph Scott and film actress/television producer Gail Patrick. The film was a remake of the 1931 Paramount movie Fighting Caravans—based on American author Zane Grey’s novel of the same name. The story revolves around the main character, scout Clint Belmont, and his two sidekicks guiding a wagon train heading west to the newly opened Oregon territory. Along the way, they faced different hardships, including a battle against Indians.

Popular Recordings

Many artists have covered the song over the years since its first release. Some of the most popular versions include those that belong to the following artists:

  • The Buccaneers
  • Eddie Dean feat. The Frontiersmen
  • The Mary Kaye Trio
  • The Platters
  • Eddy Arnold with Hugo Winterhalter’s Orchestra and Chorus
  • The Versatones
  • Johnnie Ray
  • Sons of the Pioneers
  • Mitch Miller and The Gang
  • Tex Ritter with Stan Kenton’s Orchestra
  • Frankie Laine
  • Steve Lawrence
  • Keath Barrie
  • Betty Carter
  • RW Hampton

Listen (Sons of the Pioneers Version)

Wagon Wheels Lyrics

Wagon wheels (rollin' rollin' rollin') wagon wheels
Keep on a-turnin' (turnin') wagon wheels
Roll along (rollin' rollin' rollin') sing your song
Carry me over the hill (carry me over the hill)

Roll on mule there's a steamer at the landin'
Waitin' for this cotton to load
Roll on mule the boss is understandin'
There's a pasture at the end of each road

Wagon wheels (rollin' rollin' rollin') wagon wheels
Keep on a-turnin' (turnin') wagon wheels
Roll along sing your song
Wagon wheels carry me ho-o-o-o-ome

Wagon wheels carry me home
(Wagon wheels carry me home).

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