Carole King Biography
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Carole Klein, 9 February 1942, Brooklyn, New York, USA. A proficient pianist from the age of four, King was a prolific songwriter by her early teens. When friend and neighbour Neil Sedaka embarked on his recording career, she followed him into the New York milieu, recording demos, singing back-up and even helping arrange occasional sessions. As a student at Queen's College, New York, she met future partner and husband Gerry Goffin whose lyrical gifts matched King's grasp of melody. She completed a handful of singles, including "The Right Girl" (1958), "Baby Sittin'", "Queen Of The Beach" (1959), prior to recording "Oh Neil" (1960), a riposte to Sedaka's "Oh Carol". Although not a hit, her record impressed publishing magnate Don Kirshner, who signed the Goffin/King team to his Aldon Music empire. They scored notable early success with the Shirelles ("Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow"), Bobby Vee ("Take Good Care Of My Baby") and the Drifters ("Up On The Roof") and were later responsible for much of the early output on Dimension Records, the company's in-house label. The duo wrote, arranged and produced hits for Little Eva ("The Loco-Motion") and the Cookies ("Chains" and "Don't Say Nothin' Bad (About My Baby)") while a song written with Bobby Vee in mind, "It Might As Well Rain Until September", provided King with a solo hit in 1962.
Although this memorable and highly evocative song barely reached the US Top 30, it climbed to number 3 in the UK. However, two follow-up singles fared less well. The Goffin/King oeuvre matured as the 60s progressed, resulting in several sophisticated, personalized compositions, including "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" (Aretha Franklin), "Goin' Back" (Dusty Springfield and the Byrds) and "Pleasant Valley Sunday" (the Monkees). The couple also established the short-lived Tomorrow label, but their disintegrating marriage was chronicled on King's 1967 single, "The Road To Nowhere", the year they dissolved their partnership.
King then moved to Los Angeles and having signed to Lou Adler's Ode label, formed the City with ex-Fugs duo Danny Kortchmar (guitar) and Charles Larkey (bass). (The latter became King's second husband.) The trio's lone album, Now That Everything's Been Said, included the artist's versions of "I Wasn't Born To Follow" and "That Old Sweet Roll (Hi De Ho)", covered, respectively, by the Byrds and Blood, Sweat And Tears. King began a solo career in 1970 with Writer, before fully asserting her independence with Tapestry. This radiant selection contained several of the singer's most incisive compositions, notably "You've Got A Friend", a US number 1 for James Taylor, "It's Too Late", a US chart-topper for King, and "So Far Away".
Unlike many of her former production-line contemporaries, King was able to shrug off teen preoccupations and use her skills to address adult doubts and emotions. Tapestry has now sold in excess of 15 million copies worldwide and established its creator as a major figure in the singer-songwriter movement. However, the delicate balance it struck between perception and self-delusion became blurred on Music and Rhymes And Reasons, which were regarded as relative disappointments.
Each set nonetheless achieved gold disc status, as did Fantasy, Wrap Around Joy (which contained her second US number 1, "Jazzman") and Thoroughbred. The last marked the end of King's tenure at Ode and she has since failed to reap the same commercial success. Her first release of the 80s, Pearls, comprised "classic" Goffin/King songs, a release which many interpreted as an artistic impasse. Certainly King subsequently pursued a less frenetic professional life, largely restricting her live appearances to fund-raising concerns. In the early 90s she had relocated to Ireland. Her recordings also became more measured and if Speeding Time, Colour Of Your Dreams or City Streets lacked the cultural synchronization Tapestry enjoyed with the post-Woodstock audience, her songwriting skills were still in evidence. In the USA, Tapestry exceeded 10 million copies sold in July 1995.
After a number of years keeping a relatively low profile, King released Love Makes The World on her own Rockingale label. This album, probably her finest collection of songs since Tapestry, proves King now has the experience of age and a voice that has grown stronger.
DISCOGRAPHY: Writer (Ode 1970)***, Tapestry (Ode 1971)****, Music (Ode 1971)***, Rhymes And Reasons (Ode 1972)***, Fantasy (Ode 1973)****, Wrap Around Joy (Ode 1974)***, Really Rosie (Ode 1975)***, Thoroughbred (Ode 1976)***, Simple Things (Capitol 1977)**, Welcome Home (Avatar 1978)**, Touch The Sky (Capitol 1979)**, Pearls (Songs Of Goffin And King) (Capitol 1980)**, One To One (Atlantic 1982)**, Speeding Time (Atlantic 1984)***, City Streets (Capitol 1989)**, Colour Of Your Dreams (Valley 1993)***, In Concert (Quality 1994)**, The Carnegie Hall Concert 1971 (Sony 1996)***, Love Makes The World (Rockingale 2001)****.
COMPILATIONS: Her Greatest Hits (Ode 1973)***, A Natural Woman: The Ode Collection 1968-1976 (Legacy 1995)****, Goin' Back (Sony 1996)***, Natural Woman: The Very Best Of Carole King (Sony 2000)****.
VIDEOGRAPHY: In Concert (Wienerworld 1994).
BIBLIOGRAPHY: Carole King, Paula Taylor. Carole King: A Biography In Words & Pictures, Mitchell S. Cohen.
Encyclopedia of Popular Music
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Amazing Carol King | Reviewer: Linda Partridge | 2/24/13
I have just seen Carol King at Mission Estate here in New Zealand with Barry Gibb on Saturday 23rd February. I grew up with your music (I am only 8 years younger than Carol)and your music is as strong today as it was when I was jumping around my parents lounge as a teenager.
Carol you are amazing.
natural woman concert in australia | Reviewer: mary | 2/21/13
Just last night i saw carol king's concert in adelaide and the magificent Tridoor concert with carol and James taylor, I have love her music emensely for years, she was great, her voice never faltered once during the concert. I am going to run to a book store and get her book, nothing ever beats the 60's and 70's of her songs and hits she had. CAROL KING YOU'RE THE GREATEST!
love carole king ! | Reviewer: kate downey | 2/6/13
Carole King is the best - extraordinary music, songs, voice. beautiful person - my dream is to meet her - I am going to her concert on 18 Feb - can't wait - i just love her - they dont make musicians like they used to - Carole KiNG ROCKS! LOVE - KATE DOWNEY
Soundtrack of my Life | Reviewer: LaTonia Harris | 6/22/11
I feel the earth move... I literally hugged my Tapestry Album for years when it was gifted to me by my parents. I was 11 yrs old. Every talent show I sung her songs. My daughter (age 30) just informed me of Carole Kings upcoming book she's searching for a early release as I type, for my Birthday.
Always Been a Fan | Reviewer: Jim Goodwin | 5/7/11
Carole's music has always been some of my favorite music. The first time I heard "I Feel the Earth Move," I felt like the earth was moving. "So Far Away" spoke to me in times of loneliness. And I'm a jazz saxophonist and love to play "Jazzman." Thanks, Carole, for all the wonderful songs.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! | Reviewer: Jerry Feldner | 2/9/11
NOT A REVIEW! Just a birthday wish for an artist to whom I have listened and appreciated for many years and still do. Her popularity on local radio stations and many iTunes outlets is amazing. Carole, have a happy birthday on 02-09-11!!
Carol King - Icon | Reviewer: marlene young | 10/11/10
Carol King's exquisite songs and lyrics helped me through some tough times growing up, since we are about the same age. I don't think there will ever be another and how lucky we are that we still have her.
July 17th Vegas Concert | Reviewer: Sandy | 7/21/10
Just saw James Taylor/Carole King in concert...It was an amazing show...Carole was warm and energetic, and James modest and charming. Their music was so nostalgic and heartfelt, and both sang beautifully. I felt privileged to be there.
With James Taylor in Chicago-United Center | Reviewer: Anonymous | 7/11/10
Awesome, Awesome Awesome,
What a great Show--Carole's voice is incredible!!! She is tireless too!!!
Paired with James Taylor-recieved two standing ovations--one of the best concerts I have seen!!!!
Write these musicals! | Reviewer: Sidney Goldberg | 7/10/08
Write the music to these hip Jewish styled shows! Maybe the new 'Fiddler on the Roof'? Click www.SidneyGoldbergWriter.com and you'll see I write up a storm: book and lyrics to 20 musicals. Eight have been completed by some of the most accomplished composers (see bio) and are currently under consideration, the rest are waiting to be composed.
One of the funniest musicals ever written, about nutty, meshugeneh Jews; Abraham, fulfilling his covenant with God by circumcising himself. "Abraham's Cut," is a hysterically funny story about the last Mohel, circumciser in the Bronx. The three desperate candidates who have come to be circumcised are petrified when they meet the Mohel, who turns out to be wearing very thick glasses, his hands shake and says he like to drink bourbon before all his circumcisions.
"That Bestseller," is a funny and sexual story about how the Bible was supposedly written by two starving messhugeneh brothers, Abie and Leyzer 5,000 years ago.
"So Far Away" | Reviewer: Kayla Spencer | 5/26/08
"So Far Away" is my favorite song ever. I love the whole idea of the song. The first time I heard it I remember thinking wow,that song is really moving & really touched my heart.
INCOMPARABLE | Reviewer: Pamanda | 2/7/08
Never before, and most likely never again will there be an artist of her caliber. Her music has touched the hearts and souls of all genders, races, and ages. During the sixties and seventies she is the one artist that my grandmother, mother and I would listen to together.
Thank you for sharing your gift with the world.
Person to Person - Morty to Carole | Reviewer: Anonymous | 1/20/08
Tis is personal for carole king. I live at lake waubeeka. I knew your father sidney klein well and also your mother ginny. I bought your wurlitzer spinet piano from ginny before she moved to florida. I am planning to sell it because I may relocate. So I offer it back to you first before I put it on the market. Are you interested? Morton Morrison 12 arthur street danbury ct 06810 203 748 7339 firstname.lastname@example.org
Carole King | Reviewer: nancy | 9/21/07
I have always been a Carole King fan since the early 70's. Her voice is so clear and emotional. I could listen to her singing all the time. Jazzman is one of my favorites.
CAROLE SINGING GOD BLESS AMERICA | Reviewer: kathy white | 9/8/07
Ijust saw her on tv singing God Bless America ,and her performance was blood warming goose bump experience .To me she perming was representation of my generation at a Tennis Match that the players were all unfimiliar.She was the high point of the tennis match ,and I wont forget her performance soon.!
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