"The End of the World" is a country and pop music hit song recorded by Skeeter Davis that enjoyed international success in the 1960s.


"The End of the World" was written by Arthur Kent and Sylvia Dee; the latter drew on her sorrow from her father's death.

Davis recorded her version on June 8, 1962 at the RCA Studios in Nashville, produced by Chet Atkins, and featuring Floyd Cramer.[1] Released by RCA Records in December 1962, "The End of the World" peaked in March 1963 at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100, No. 2 on the Billboard country singles,[2] No. 1 on Billboard's easy listening, and No. 4 on Billboard's rhythm and blues.[3] It is the first, and, to date, only time that a song cracked the Top 10 on all four Billboard charts.[citation needed] Billboard ranked the record as the No. 3 song of 1963.[4]

In the Skeeter Davis version, after she sings the whole song through in the key of B-flat, the song goes up by a half step to the key of B, where Skeeter speaks the first two lines of the final stanza, before singing the rest of the stanza, ending the song.

Davis's recording of "The End of the World" was played at Atkins's funeral in an instrumental by Marty Stuart, and at Davis's own funeral at the Ryman Auditorium.

Davis's version has been featured in Girl, InterruptedRiding In Cars With BoysDaltry CalhounAn American AffairThe Boat That Rocked, "The Grown-Ups" episode of Mad Men,[5] "Blue on Blue" episode of Under the Dome, and the opening credits of the BYU TV series Granite Flats.

Chart performanceEdit

Chart (1963) Peak


Australian Kent Music Report 32
U.K. Singles Chart[6] 18
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 2
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 2
U.S. BillboardHot Black Singles 4
U.S. Billboard Easy Listening 1[7]

The Carpenters versionEdit

"The End of the World"
Single by The Carpenters
from the album Live in Japan
B-side "Sing" (live with the Kyoto Children's Choir)
Released March 5, 1975
Format Cassette
Recorded June 4–9, 1975
Genre Country
Length 2:04
Label A&M/King Records, Universal
Writer(s) Arthur Kent, Sylvia Dee
Producer(s) Richard Carpenter
The Carpenters singles chronology
"Only Yesterday"


"The End of the World"




In 1975, American pop music duo Carpenters released a cover of "The End of the World" as a promotional single from their live album Live in Japan. It was recorded at the Festival HallOsakaJapan.

Sonia versionEdit

"End of the World"
Single by Sonia
from the album Everybody Knows
B-side "Can't Help The Way That I Feel"
Released August 1990
Format CD Single

7" Single 12" Single

Recorded 1990
Genre Pop
Length 3:36
Label Chrysalis
Writer(s) Arthur Kent, Sylvia Dee
Producer(s) Stock, Aitken & Waterman
Sonia singles chronology
"You've Got a Friend"


"End of the World"


"Only Fools (Never Fall in Love)"


In 1990, British singer Sonia covered "End of the World". The fifth and final single from her debut album,Everybody Knows, it reached number 18 in the UK,[8] the same chart position as the original.[6] The single's B-side "Can'tHELP The Way That I Feel" appeared on Sonia's debut album. This was her final single withStock Aitken Waterman.

Formats and track listingsEdit

7" single
  1. "End of the World"
  2. "Can'tHELP the Way That I Feel"
CD single and 12" vinyl single
  1. "End of the World"
  2. "Can'tHELP the Way That I Feel"
  3. "Counting Every Minute" (Tick Tock Remix)


Chart (1990) Peak


UK Singles Chart 18
Irish Singles Chart 18
Australian ARIA singles chart[9] 153

Other versionsEdit

A No. 2 hit in Sweden in September 1966 via a local cover by Mike Wallace & the Caretakers, "The End of the World" has also been remade by a number of other artists including Jessica AnderssonAnika (as a b-side to her single "Yang Yang" and on her album Anika), Eddy Arnold, Chie Ayado, Best CoastDebby Boone,BrilliantCarola (in Finnish as "Maailmain"), The CarpentersRivers CuomoBobby DarinLana Del Rey,Barbara DicksonDionMary DuffAllison DurbinJudith DurhamExposéAgnetha FältskogRosie Flores,Emi FujitaGirlsNina GordonHerman's Hermits (as the B-side of "I'm Henry VIII, I Am"), Grethe & Jørgen Ingmann (released on the b-side to Eurovision Song Contest winner song 1963; Dansevise), Satoko IshimineJoni JamesBrenda LeeLoboJulie LondonClaudine LongetLoretta LynnAl MartinoJohnny Mathis, Anne Mattila (in Finnish as "Maailmain"), Imelda MayMaywoodJohn Cougar MellencampAnita Meyerthe Mills BrothersRonnie MilsapDorothy MooreMudAnne MurrayLeigh NashNomeansno,Patti PageHelen ShapiroAnne SheltonVonda ShepardNancy SinatraSoniaThe TokensTwiggy,Twinkle, The Vanguards, Bobby VintonJeff WalkerDottie West, and Lena Zavaroni. In 2009 Susan Boyle remade "The End of the World" for her debut album, I Dreamed a Dream.

A cover version by Allison Paige peaked at number 72 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart in May 2000.[10]

The brazilian band Roupa Nova made a cover version in portuguese, in 1997, named "O Sonho Acabou".

Danny Chan, a Hong Kong famous singer, covered the song in a Cantonese version called "冬戀".

Mandarin version 《后会无期》 was covered by Hong Kong singer Gem Tang. Subsequently there was another Mandarin versionTITLED "星梦之光", lyrics written by an SNH48 member, Wu Yanwen, and performed by SNH48 themselves in 2015.

Appearances in mediaEdit

The song was used as the opening and closing theme for the political thriller radio drama Pandemic, produced by BBC Radio 4 .[11] The song was also used in the 1999 drama film "Girl, Interrupted". The song is used in the Stephen King/Stephen Spielberg CBS TV series Under the Dome season one episode five, Blue on Blue. An abbreviated version of the song is the theme music for the TV show Granite Flats.

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