7 Interesting Facts And Stories Of ‘Carolina In My Mind’ By James Taylor
via Guitar Center/YouTube
A Well-Loved Classic
One of James Taylor’s best known and most enduring songs, “Carolina in My Mind” was originally featured on his 1968 self-titled debut album. Upon its release, it earned critical praise but it failed to achieve commercial success. Nevertheless, it has since achieved classic status.
Check out facts about this track:
1. Taylor wrote it while staying at an apartment in London.
He was recording overseas for the Beatles’ label Apple Records.
2. It’s about homesickness.
Taylor longed to return to North Carolina where he and his siblings grew up. He said the song touched on “that feeling of being called away to another place.”
3. Taylor revealed the identity of the woman referred to by the line “Karin, she’s a silver sun.”
There were speculations about her for years, but in March 2009, Taylor finally set the record straight. Karin was someone he met in the island of Formentera. She was a 24-year old Scandinavian, and he never saw her again.
4. It featured two members of The Beatles.
Paul McCartney was credited on bass guitar, while George Harrison was uncredited on backing vocals.
5. It was Taylor’s first single, but it wasn’t a hit.
At the time, he was still struggling with his heroin habit and checked in to a psychiatric facility. Thus, he wasn’t able to tour or promote the song. It only peaked at #118 on the US Billboard Hot 100.
6. He referenced The Beatles.
It was in the line, “With a holy host of others standing ’round me, still I’m on the dark side of the moon.” The Fab Four were the “holy host of others.” Taylor was thrilled to be on the same label as his idols.
7. Producer Peter Asher explained the subtle strings on this classic.
“In the case of the Apple James Taylor album, I did specifically think about some kind of orchestrations,” he told SongFacts, “because I really wanted to establish the fact that he was not just another long-haired folkie with an acoustic guitar. I wanted people to take him seriously as a composer.”