Wand'rin' Star

Album: Paint Your Wagon soundtrack (1969)
Charted: 1
Play Video


  • The 1969 musical Paint Your Wagon cost an estimated $20 million to produce but grossed less than $32 million at the American box office. That may have been disappointing, but the song "Wand'rin' Star" was anything but. Performed by Lee Marvin in a deep, soporific voice, it topped the UK chart for 3 weeks in 1970, and was also #1 in Ireland.

    The song finds Marvin singing about his peripatetic lifestyle that takes him to California for the Gold Rush.
  • The song appeared too in the 1951 Broadway version; it was composed by Frederick Loewe and written by Alan Jay Lerner. The Marvin single version - which was performed with a male chorus - was arranged and orchestrated by Nelson Riddle.
  • The B-side was another song from the same film, "I Still See Elisa," which was performed by Clint Eastwood. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 3

Comments: 3

  • Keith E Johnson from Olathe KsMy family and friends all absolutely loved the movie version of "Paint Your Wagon"!!
  • Adrian Chan from MalaysiaThe spookiest song I've ever heard! Gives me goose pimples!
  • Greg from Shelbyville, KyLong one of my favorite movies. This song got a lot of airplay in the US, at least on what we would now call Adult Contemporary stations. Back then, they were Middle of the Road (MOR).
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Charlie Benante of Anthrax

Charlie Benante of AnthraxSongwriter Interviews

The drummer for Anthrax is also a key songwriter. He explains how the group puts their songs together and tells the stories behind some of their classics.

Joe Jackson

Joe JacksonSongwriter Interviews

Joe talks about the challenges of of making a Duke Ellington tribute album, and tells the stories behind some of his hits.


KissFact or Fiction

Kiss is the subject of many outlandish rumors - some of which happen to be true. See if you can spot the fakes.

Christmas Songs

Christmas SongsFact or Fiction

Rudolf, Bob Dylan and the Singing Dogs all show up in this Fact or Fiction for seasonal favorites.

Charlie Daniels

Charlie DanielsSongwriter Interviews

Charlie discusses the songs that made him a Southern Rock icon, and settles the Devil vs. Johnny argument once and for all.

Annie Haslam of Renaissance

Annie Haslam of RenaissanceSongwriter Interviews

The 5-octave voice of the classical rock band Renaissance, Annie is big on creative expression. In this talk, she covers Roy Wood, the history of the band, and where all the money went in the '70s.