Billy Hill

Billy Hill

nato il 14.7.1899 a Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts/MA, Stati Uniti d'America

morto il 24.12.1940 a Boston, MA, Stati Uniti d'America

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Billy Hill (songwriter)

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Billy Hill (songwriter)

Billy Hill (July 14, 1899 – December 24, 1940) was an American songwriter, violinist, and pianist who found fame writing Western songs such as "They Cut Down the Old Pine Tree", "The Last Roundup", "Wagon Wheels", and "Empty Saddles". Hill's most popular song was "The Glory of Love", recorded by Benny Goodman in 1936, Count Basie in 1937, Peggy Lee in 1959, Dean Martin in 1966, Tom Rush in 1968, Eddy Arnold in 1969, Wizz Jones in 1970, Otis Redding, The Five Keys, Paul McCartney in 2012 and Bette Midler for the film Beaches.

Early years

William Joseph Hill was born on July 14, 1899 in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. He studied the violin at the New England Conservatory of Music under Karl Muck, and played with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Hill left home at the age of seventeen and headed west, where he worked as a cowboy in Montana, and as a surveyor and prospector in Death Valley, California. He returned to music and played violin and piano in dance halls until forming his own jazz band in Salt Lake City, Utah.[1]

Songwriting career

In 1930, Hill moved to New York City seeking success as a songwriter while working another series of odd jobs. In 1933, he wrote his first hit song, "The Last Roundup", which was introduced by Joe Morrison at the Paramount Theater and eventually made the 1933 Hit Parade. The song's success made Billy Hill one of the most successful songwriters on Tin Pan Alley.[1]

Hill collaborated with many songwriters, including Peter De Rose, Dedette Hill (his wife), Victor Young, William Raskin, Edward Eliscu, and J. Keirn Brennan, producing standards such as "They Cut Down the Old Pine Tree", "Have you ever Been Lonely", "Wagon Wheels", "Empty Saddles", "In the Chapel in the Moonlight", "The Call of the Canyon", "On a Little Street in Singapore", "The Old Man of the Mountain", "The Old Spinning Wheel", "Lights Out", "There's a Cabin in the Pines", "Put on an Old Pair of Shoes", "Lights Out", and "The Glory of Love".[1]

Under the name of George "Funky" Brown, he co-wrote the song "Have You Ever Been Lonely?" and "That's When Your Heartaches Begin", which later became hit songs for the Ink Spots and Elvis Presley.

Billy Hill died on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1940 in Boston, at the age of 41.[1]

Honors and awards

  • Songwriters Hall of Fame
  • Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame


  • "All Ashore"
  • "Alone at the Table for Two"
  • "Angeline"
  • "Arizona Moon"
  • "Brills of Normandy"
  • "Buggy Song"
  • "Cabin in the Carolines"
  • "Call of the Canyon"
  • "Candlelights and Roses"
  • "Clouds Will Soon Roll By"
  • "Colorado Memories"
  • "Colorado Moon"
  • "Dream River"
  • "Empty Saddles"
  • "Everything Has Changed by You"
  • "Face in the Fireplace"
  • "Forbidden Love"
  • "Glory of Love"
  • "Have You Ever Been Lonely"
  • "Hook and Ladder 31"
  • "Hot Tamales"
  • "I Wonder Where My Old Girl"
  • "I'm Going to Yodel My Way"
  • "If I Had Somebody to Love"
  • "In a Little Town Across the Border"
  • "In a Mission by the Sea"
  • "In Chapel in the Moonlight"
  • "In the Dark"
  • "Just Say Aloha"
  • "Ladies of the Night"
  • "Last Round Up"
  • "Lights Out"
  • "Little Black Shawl"
  • "Little Old Buryin' Ground"
  • "Locked Up in Prison"
  • "Lost"
  • "Louisville Lady"
  • "Maker of Dreams"
  • "Manyana Tomorrow"
  • "May I Have This Waltz You"
  • "Meet Me Tonight in the Old Bunkhouse"
  • "Moon Over Monterey"
  • "Night After Night"
  • "Night on the Desert"
  • "Nobody Sings Me a Love Song"
  • "Oh Muki Muki Oh"
  • "Old Man of the Mountain"
  • "On a Little Dream Ranch"
  • "On a Little Street in Singapore"
  • "Oregon Trail"
  • "Playmates"
  • "Prairie Lullaby"
  • "Put on an Old Pair of Shoes"
  • "Rain"
  • "Rock a Bye Baby Blues"
  • "Rock Me to Sleep"
  • "Rollin' Home"
  • "Sleepy Head"
  • "Smoke from a Chimney"
  • "So Little Time"
  • "Something to Remember"
  • "Street in Havana"
  • "Sweet Misery of Love"
  • "Sweethearts in Paradise"
  • "Take Those Mountains Out"
  • "That's What I Call Heaven"
  • "That's When Your Heartaches Begin"
  • "That's Where the South Belongs"
  • "The Mountaineers Sweetheart"
  • "The Old Covered Bridge"
  • "The Old Spinning Wheel"
  • "The Scene Changes"
  • "There's a Cabin in the Pines"
  • "There's a Home in Wyoming"
  • "There's Little Box of Pine O"
  • "There's No Light in the Lighthouse"
  • "There's a Wild Rose that Grows"
  • "They Cut Down the Old Pine"
  • "Till the Clock Strikes Three"
  • "Timber"
  • "The Tree that Father Planted"
  • "Wagon Wheels"
  • "Was I a Rooster"
  • "West, a Nest, and You"
  • "When I Was a Boy"
  • "When Twilight Comes"
  • "When Your Love Knocks at Your Heart"
  • "Why Am I Blue"
  • "You Should Have Told Me"
  • "You'll Grow Sweeter Sweetheart"[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Billy Hill Biography. Songwriters Hall of Fame. Retrieved on July 21, 2012.
  2. Billy Hill Song Catalog. Songwriters Hall of Fame. Retrieved on July 21, 2012.

External links

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