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The End of the World" is a pop music hit song by Skeeter Davis that enjoyed international success in the 1960s. The record was released by RCA Records in December 1962 and reached its greatest success in March 1963, peaking at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart, number two on the Billboard country singles chart[1] (Davis was a country music vocalist and the record was a crossover music success), and number one on Billboard's easy listening chart. The record also was a number four hit on Billboard's rhythm and blues chart[2] - making Davis one of the very few Caucasian female vocalists to enjoy a top ten record on that chart. Davis' four-chart top-ten accomplishment has never been duplicated by any other female vocalist in the history of the Billboard charts.[citation needed]

Although Ruby and the Romantics' hit "Our Day Will Come" kept "The End of the World" from hitting number one on the pop chart, the song's popularity and chart history earned it the number three place on Billboard's list of the year's 20 biggest hits.

The music was written by Arthur Kent with lyrics by Sylvia Dee. Dee also wrote the lyrics for "Too Young" by Nat King Cole.

Davis' recording was produced by Chet Atkins and has long been considered one of the foremost examples of the Nashville Sound of the 1960s - smooth vocals and a slick, sophisticated production appealing to audiences far beyond the traditional country music audience. The song was played at Atkins' funeral in 2001 in an instrumental performance by Marty Stuart and later, Davis' recording was broadcast over the speakers of her 2004 funeral at the Ryman Auditorium.

Davis went on to score many other country music hits as well as a few major pop crossovers, but she was forever identified with "The End of the World" and sang it at virtually every concert appearance she would make after its success.

The song has been covered by a number of artists including The Carpenters, Loretta Lynn, Herman's Hermits, Brenda Lee, Carola, Bobby Vinton, John Cougar Mellencamp, Johnny Mathis, Julie London, Eddy Arnold, Dottie West, Nancy Sinatra, Sonia, Twiggy, Claudine Longet, Agnetha Fältskog (of ABBA fame), Rosie Flores, Patti Page, Anne Murray, Nina Gordon, Girls, Vonda Shepard, Exposé, The Vanguards, Leigh Nash, Brilliant, Lobo, Satoko Ishimine and others. In 2009, the song received new attention via a cover version by international Internet sensation Susan Boyle on her debut album, I Dreamed a Dream.

Davis' version remains the definitive performance, and her version has been featured on the soundtracks of a number of films (including Girl, Interrupted, Riding In Cars With Boys, Daltry Calhoun and The Boat That Rocked) plus in the JFK assassination episode of the 2009 television series Mad Men.[3]

It was also featured on TV commercials for the videogame Tom Clancy's EndWar, in which the conflict the game revolves around threatens to destroy civilization.

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