Whole Wide World (song)

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"Whole Wide World"
Whole Wide World.jpg
1977 UK issue
Single by Wreckless Eric
from the album Wreckless Eric
B-side"Semaphore Signals"
Released25 August 1977 (1977-08-25)
Songwriter(s)Eric Goulden
Wreckless Eric singles chronology
"Whole Wide World"
"Reconnez Cherie"

"Whole Wide World" is a song written by English rock singer-songwriter Wreckless Eric, who wrote the song in May 1974,[1] and recorded it in 1977, whilst an original member of the Stiff Records label. Additional musicians on the record were Nick Lowe on guitar and bass, and Steve Goulding on drums.

The song was never a chart hit single for Eric, though it subsequently became his most well-known recording. The only charted versions of "Whole Wide World" are a cover by the Australian band Mental As Anything, who took it to No. 53 on the Australian singles chart in 1995, and another by American alternative rock band Cage the Elephant, who took it to No. 11 on the Billboard Alternative Songs chart in 2017.


The song is a simple one for beginner guitar[2][not in citation given] players to learn.[citation needed] Instead of the three chords of most pop songs, it contains only two chords: E and A. The verses are in a steady 4/4 time with the only difference being a more spirited[according to whom?] strum during the chorus[3] and a catchy[according to whom?] single bar of 2/4 during its last line.

Sung by Wreckless Eric[edit]

Covers by other artists[edit]

In films[edit]


Specific references:

  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-12-05. Retrieved 2007-12-03.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ "Best Acoustic Guitar Guitars For Beginners - 2016 Edition". Bestbeginnerguitartoday.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  3. ^ Play guitar with Will Ferrell Rich Copley (critic for the Lexington Herald-Leader), Copious Notes, 2006-11-08
  4. ^ "Wreckless Eric - Greatest Stiffs". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  5. ^ Whole Wide World - Wreckless Eric Allmusic, accessed 2008-08-13
  6. ^ "Various Artists - Music From The Motion Picture Stranger Than Fiction". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  7. ^ "Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World 4 England". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  8. ^ Wreckless Eric - Whole Wide World on YouTube haroldturkeypants, 2006-07-13
  9. ^ Whole Wide World - The Monkees on YouTube marrrthew, posted 2007-11-11
  10. ^ "Disco". Laptopic.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  11. ^ a b "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-02-10. Retrieved 2007-12-03.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  12. ^ Gemma Hayes - Whole Wide World video on YouTube dublin1996, YouTube, posted 2006-08-12
  13. ^ [1][dead link]
  14. ^ "Whole Wide World | Sallie Ford & the Sound Outside". Salliefordandthesoundoutside.bandcamp.com. Retrieved 2016-10-13.
  15. ^ "Listen: Pangs - Whole Wide World". PileRats.com. Retrieved 2015-09-18.
  16. ^ "berhana". SoundCloud. Retrieved 7 April 2018.

General references:

  • Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 611. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.

External links[edit]