Song Lyric Sunday — Gray Matter

For this week’s Song Lyric Sunday, Jim Adams gave us the themes of “brain,” “mind,” and “think.” It didn’t take my brain much time to think about a song that I had in mind for this prompt. Ha! Did you see what I did there? Anyway, I digress. I decided to go with James Taylor’s classic song, “Carolina In My Mind.”

“Carolina in My Mind” was written and performed by singer-songwriter James Taylor and first appeared on his 1968 self-titled debut album. When it was released as a single, the song earned critical praise but did not receive commercial success.

Taylor, who grew up in North Carolina, wrote the song while he was overseas recording for the Beatles’ label, Apple Records. The song reflects Taylor’s homesickness at the time, as he was missing his family, his dog and his state. Released as a single, the song earned critical praise but not commercial success.

There had been a great deal of speculation as to the identity of Karin, the woman he sings about in the line, “Karin, she’s a silver sun.” Until 2009, Taylor would not reveal her identity, but in a concert shown on BBC Television in March 2009, he revealed the identity of the Karin alluded to in this song. Taylor met Karin on the island of Formentera, where he had a fleeting relationship with her, but never saw her again. She was Scandinavian, about twenty-four years old, and had shoulder length blonde hair. Taylor said that her ghost was still haunting him 35 years later, and with the advent of the internet, he commissioned a police artist to draw a sketch of what she would look like after all this time. The artist e-mailed him a most unflattering sketch the next day as a joke. Though Taylor was pleased with the real sketch, he said that try as he may he couldn’t stop thinking of her now as a criminal. Sadly, he was unable to reunite Karin.

Here is an interesting interview with James Taylor about the song. It was conducted by late night talk-show host Seth Meyers last year.

Here are the lyrics to the “Carolina In My Mind.”

In my mind I’m gone to Carolina
Can’t you see the sunshine?
Can’t you just feel the moonshine?
Ain’t it just like a friend of mine
To hit me from behind?
Yes, I’m gone to Carolina in my mind

Karin, she’s a silver sun
You best walk her way and watch it shine
Watch her watch the morning come
A silver tear appearing now
I’m cryin’, ain’t I?
Gone to Carolina in my mind

There ain’t no doubt in no ones mind
That love’s the finest thing around
Whisper something soft and kind
And hey babe, the sky’s on fire
I’m dying, ain’t I?
Gone to Carolina in my mind

In my mind I’m gone to Carolina
Can’t you see the sunshine?
Can’t you just feel the moonshine?
Ain’t it just like a friend of mine
To hit me from behind?
Yes, I’m gone to Carolina in my mind

Dark and silent, late last night
I think I might have heard the highway call
And geese in flight and dogs that bite
The signs that might be omens say
I’m goin’, I’m goin’
I’m gone to Carolina in my mind

With a holy host of others standin’ around me
Still I’m on the dark side of the moon
And it seems like it goes on like this forever
You must forgive me, if I’m up and gone to
Carolina in my mind

In my mind I’m goin’ to Carolina
Can’t you see the sunshine?
Can’t you just feel the moonshine?
Ain’t is just like a friend of mine
To hit me from behind
Yes, I’m gone to Carolina in my mind
Gone to Carolina in my mind
And I’m goin’ to Carolina in my mind
Gone to Carolina in my mind
Gone, I’m gone, I’m gone
Say nice things about me ’cause I’m gone South now
Carry on without me, I’m gone

17 thoughts on “Song Lyric Sunday — Gray Matter

  1. Carol anne February 14, 2021 / 4:04 am

    Awesome song! Great take on the prompt for this week, Fandango!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Fandango February 14, 2021 / 9:41 am

      Thank you, Carol Anne.

      Like

  2. newepicauthor February 14, 2021 / 7:37 am

    Taylor’s family moved to Chapel Hill, North Carolina when he was three years old. I could spend a whole day listening to James Taylor, thanks for sharing this Fandango.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Lisa Coleman February 14, 2021 / 8:51 am

    Great song choice and the interview was quite amusing. He really is a funny guy for being so laid back. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. J-Dub February 14, 2021 / 3:12 pm

    ❤ James Taylor. Always evokes such emotion.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango February 15, 2021 / 11:03 am

      Thanks, Christine.

      Like

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