Top of the World (The Carpenters song)

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"Top of the World"
Cover to the single "Top of the World"
Single by The Carpenters
from the album A Song for You
A-side "Top of the World"
B-side "Heather"
Released September 17, 1973
Format 7" single
Recorded 1972
Genre Country pop
Length 2:56
Label A&M
Writer(s) Richard Carpenter; John Bettis
Producer(s) Jack Daugherty
Certification Gold (RIAA)
The Carpenters singles chronology
"Yesterday Once More"
"Top of the World"
"Jambalaya (On the Bayou)"

"Top of the World" is a 1972 song written and composed by Richard Carpenter and John Bettis. It was a Billboard Hot 100 number one hit in 1973 for The Carpenters. Originally intended to be only an album cut for the Carpenters, country music singer Lynn Anderson covered the song and was the first to release it as a single. Her version nearly topped the U.S. Billboard Hot Country singles chart, reaching No. 2.

The Carpenters version[edit]


Originally recorded for and released on the duo's 1972 studio album A Song for You, the song topped the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in late 1973, becoming the duo's second of three number one singles, following "(They Long to Be) Close to You" and preceding "Please Mr. Postman." Karen Carpenter re-recorded the song for the band's first compilation as she was not quite satisfied with the original.

In Japan, the song was used as the opening theme song for the 1995 Japanese drama Miseinen. In 2003, it was used for another drama, this time as the ending theme song for Beginner. It appeared on the 2010 soundtrack of Shrek Forever After when Shrek enjoys being a "real ogre" and terrifying the villagers, as well as in a prominent scene of the 2012 film Dark Shadows, with a performance by the Carpenters seen on a television screen.


Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1973) Peak
Canadian RPM Singles 1
Dutch Mega Single Top 100[1] 12
German Media Control Charts[2] 38
Irish Singles Charts 3
Japanese Oricon Singles 21
Record World 3
UK Singles Chart 5
Ultratop Flanders[3] 27
US Billboard Hot 100 1
US Billboard Easy Listening 2

Lynn Anderson version[edit]

"Top of the World"
Lynn Anderson's 1973 Top of the World album.
Single by Lynn Anderson
from the album Top of the World
A-side "Top of the World"
Released June 1973
Format 45 rpm record
Recorded 1973
Genre Country pop
Length 2:55
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Richard Carpenter, John Bettis
Producer(s) Glenn Sutton, Clive Davis
Certification Gold Single
Lynn Anderson singles chronology
"Keep Me in Mind"
"Top of the World"
"Sing About Love"


Country music singer Lynn Anderson covered the song in 1973 for her studio album Top of the World, released on Columbia Records. It was the first single released from her album and her version of the song became the first hit. Anderson's cover reached No. 2 on the U.S. country singles chart and No. 74 on Billboard Hot 100 in mid-1973. The success of Anderson's version prompted the Carpenters to release a new version as a single, where it topped the U.S. pop singles chart for two weeks in December 1973.[4] Anderson's cover was produced by her husband Glenn Sutton and Clive Davis. She later re-recorded the song for her 2004 album, The Bluegrass Sessions.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1973) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 2
U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks 34
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 74
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 1
Canadian RPM Adult Contemporary Tracks 30

Other versions[edit]

  • In 1973, Icelandic singer Þuríður Sigurðardóttir covered the song with the title "Undraheimur" on the album "Þuríður & Pálmi". Icelandic words by Jónas Friðrik.
  • Also in 1973 The Maguires covered the song recorded on RCA. The Maguires was a nom-de-plume for the pop star Clodagh Rodgers, who was joined on the record by her sister Lavinia and brother Louis.
  • In 1973 Swedish singer Siv Inger Svensson (Siw Inger) published a German cover version of the song. Her single called "Ich hab' es gern".
  • In 1974 Ray Conniff had the song on the Album "The Way We Are"
  • Swedish dansband Vikingarna had a 1974 Svensktoppen hit with a cover version in Swedish, "På världens tak", which was the first Vikingarna song to chart on the Svensktoppen.[5]
  • In 1975, the French Canadian singer Claude Valade recorded Top of the World in French Au bout du monde, (Lyrics by Christine Charbonneau). The song was part of her album «Collection Country» released by London-Deram.[6]
  • It was covered by Ami Aspelund in Finnish as Tänään Huipulla.
  • Mark O'Connor did an acoustic guitar and mandolin (David Grisman) version of the song on his 1979 album Markology.
  • The Gilman Street punk band Stikky recorded a cover containing only the chorus and released it on their EP Cuddle in 1988.
  • In 1990, Belgian singer Dana Winner covered the song as "Op het dak van de wereld".
  • In 1992, The Sugarcubes, with Björk as lead singer, covered the song. The song was included as a B-side on the single for "Walkabout", the second single from the album Stick Around for Joy.
  • Shonen Knife's cover appeared on the 1994 tribute album If I Were a Carpenter. It was the ending theme song to the 1995 film *The Last Supper and appeared in the 1998 film The Parent Trap, as well as the 2000 film The Broken Hearts Club: A Romantic Comedy.
  • The Québécois singer Bourbon Gautier recorded a Quebec French cover in 2006 titled "Au bout du monde" on the album Quand le Country dit bonjour...[7] released by AMP Records, with lyrics by Christine Charbonneau.
  • In 2006, a bossa nova version of the song was performed by Naomi & Goro and appeared on their album titled [HOME].
  • Mona Gustafsson recorded the song on her 2010 album Countrypärlor.[8]
  • A Cantonese Christian song by the name of "冰天的太陽" ("Season of Ice and Sun") was written using the melody of the song.
  • Rose Chung (舒雅頌) and Ervinna (愛慧娜) covered the song as "我的小情人" in 1974.
  • Punk supergroup Me First and the Gimme Gimmes covered the song on their 2014 album Are We Not Men? We Are Diva!.
  • Slim Whitman, on the 1977 album Home on the Range

See also[edit]

Preceded by
"You Were Always There" by Donna Fargo
RPM Country Tracks number-one single
(Lynn Anderson version)

August 18, 1973 (two weeks)
Succeeded by
"Trip to Heaven" by Freddie Hart
Preceded by
"Photograph" by Ringo Starr
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
(Carpenters version)

December 1, 1973 (two weeks)
Succeeded by
"The Most Beautiful Girl" by Charlie Rich


  1. ^ Carpenters - Top Of The World (in Dutch). Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  2. ^ Single - Carpenters, Top Of The World (in German). Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  3. ^ Carpenters - Top Of The World (in Dutch). Retrieved November 27, 2013.
  4. ^ Little Girl Blue: The Life of Karen Carpenter, Randy L. Schmidt, foreword by Dionne Warwick, 2010, page 122.
  5. ^ Svensktoppen - 1974
  6. ^,%20Claude/claudevalade.htm, "Discography, Claude Valade, 1975, Collection Country, Au bout du monde",
  7. ^,"Discography, 2006, «Quand le Country dit bonjour», one song by Bourbom Gautier, Au bout du monde",
  8. ^ "Countrypärlor" (in Swedish). Svensk mediedatabas. 2010. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 

External links[edit]