Oklahoma Hills

"Oklahoma Hills" is a song written by Woody Guthrie. Members of the Western Writers of America chose it as one of the Top 100 Western songs of all time. In 2001, the Oklahoma Legislature declared it to be the official state folk song.

Jack Guthrie, Woody's cousin, changed the lyrics and music slightly and in 1945 recorded a Western swing version, which reached No. 1 on the Juke Box Folk Records charts. It remains the best-known version of "Oklahoma Hills", and was the biggest hit of Jack Guthrie's fairly short life. Though Woody originated the song, the official Woody Guthrie website credits both him and Jack as its writers, perhaps because Jack's changes have become so well known.

Country singer Hank Thompson, joined by His Brazos Valley Boys, recorded a well-known version of "Oklahoma Hills" in 1961. Thompson's Western swing rendition reached No. 10 on the Billboard magazine Hot C&W Singles chart.

Woody's son, Arlo Guthrie, recorded the song for his album Running Down the Road, released in 1969 by Warner Bros. Records.


:Way down yonder in the Indian nation :I rode my pony on the reservation :In the Oklahoma Hills where I was born :Way down yonder in the Indian nation :A cowboy’s life is my occupation :In the Oklahoma Hills where I was born


Recordings of "Oklahoma Hills" have been made by these singers, among others:
  • Chet Atkins
  • Floyd Cramer
  • Gene Autry
  • Moe Bandy
  • Johnny Bond
  • Tommy Collins
  • The Dinning Sisters
  • Charlie Feathers
  • Arlo Guthrie
  • Jack Guthrie
  • Jimmy Lafave
  • Mary McCaslin
  • Country Joe McDonald
  • Michael J. Miles
  • Michael Parks
  • Marvin Rainwater
  • Jim Reeves
  • The Reno Brothers
  • Carl Smith
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Kay Starr
  • James Talley
  • Hank Thompson
  • Ernest Tubb
  • T. Texas Tyler
  • Ian Tyson
  • Jimmy Wakely
  • Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys
  • Ramblin' Jack Elliott