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Carole King is going to be the first woman to be awarded the Library of Congress’ George Gershwin Prize for Popular Song. She certainly deserves it, after 50 years in the music industry. She has seen it all, from the Brill Building to the singer/songwriter boom of the early 1970s to today.
King is much more than Tapestry. Below is a sampling of her best work. You can let us know other favorite songs of hers and what we've missed in the comments section.
10. “Now and Forever” - 1992
King earned a Grammy nomination in 1992 for “Now and Forever,” a song she wrote for A League of Their Own.
9. “I’m Into Something Good” - 1964 - written with Gerry Goffin
While Herman’s Hermits had the big hit, the first version, sung by the Cookies’ Earl-Jean is much better.
8.“The Loco-Motion” - 1962 - written with Gerry Goffin
“The Loco-Motion” was one of King’s early hits, co-written with her then-husband Gerry Goffin. The two were one of the most prolific hit songwriters in the 1960s, managing to write hits in nearly every genre. “The Loco-Motion,” first recorded by Little Eva, played a key role in the dance craze and people are still dancing to it today.
7. “Been To Canaan” - 1972
King continued to produce hits throughout the early 1970s, even while Tapestry still dominated the charts. “Been To Canaan” was one of those post-Tapestry hit singles that proved that she hadn’t used up all her best material on one album.
6. “Jazzman” - 1974 - written with David Palmer
Listen to that saxophone! This is a killer track that proves that King’s career isn’t filled with just piano ballads.
5. “Up On The Roof” - 1962 - written with Gerry Goffin
This is another early ‘60s classic, first recorded by The Drifters. Goffin and King put universal themes to music like no other. It’s all about that place we need to have to ourselves and was beautifully sung by the group.
4. “You’ve Got A Friend” - 1971
James Taylor and King have been close friends for years, even touring together recently. While her recording on Tapestry is fantastic, it was Taylor’s that was the hit and won both of them a Grammy.
3. “(You Make Me Feel Like A) Natural Woman” - 1967 - written with Gerry Goffin & Jerry Wexler
I’ll just let Aretha Franklin tell you why this song is on this list.
2. “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” - 1960 - written with Gerry Goffin
King was just 18 when The Shirelles’ recording of one my personal all time favorite songs, “Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” hit number one. The lyrics are just astounding to me. “Tonight you’re mine completely/You give your love so sweetly/Tonight the light of love is in your eyes/But will you love me tomorrow?”
1. “So Far Away” - 1971
The greatness of Tapestry is something that can’t be overstated. “So Far Away” is a song that is just so timeless. Lots of material from the 1970s singer/songwriting boom that King played a key part in hasn’t aged well, but “So Far Away” will always be remembered as one of the finest songs crafted by King.