Thursday, May 30, 2024

Carly Simon: Happy 76th Birthday to the “Other” Major Female Singer Songwriter Who Influenced Generations


Yes, we’ve spent all week talking about Joni Mitchell and her album, “Blue.” It’s great, she’s great, we love her.

But before “Blue,” earlier in 1971, Carly Simon appeared on the radio and for all spring and summer singing the ethereal “That’s the Way I’ve Always Heard It Should Be.” No one had a heard a song like this before on pop radio. We were like Yikes, this girl is telling her story.

This girl celebrates her 76th birthday today, 50 years later, looking a million bucks and living her best life on Martha’s Vineyard.

Of course, “That’s the Way” was just the beginning. Later in 1971 came the breakthrough album and single, both big hits, “Anticipation.” That album, confessional and tuneful, is filled with hits and memorable, catchy songs like “Legend in Your Own Time.”

But it would be a year later, at the end of 1972, when Simon would have her smash to end all smashes, “You’re So Vain,” produced majestically by Richard Perry for the album “No Secrets,” a forever classic. That album sported “The Right Thing to Do” and “Night Owl” featuring Paul and Linda McCartney. Mick Jagger sang on “You’re So Vain,” a song we all know is about youknowwho.

The hits just kept on coming with the follow up album, “Hot Cakes,” a hit duet on “Mockingbird” with husband James Taylor, and so on. Then comes the James Bond smash hit, “Nobody Does it Better” and on through 1989’s Oscar winning “Let the River Run.”

Carly is still writing and recording as new young women follow her as a trailblazer. I was recently tipped to a new song she’s been working on that sounded like a four star hit. I hope it’s released soon.

And director Simon Curtis is working on a screenplay adapting Carly’s best selling memoir, “Boys in the Trees.”

And she’s a grandmother!

Happy Birthday, Carly! There’s nothing better than that voice, sensual and throaty, leading the band through those zingy hooks and golden lyrics. And she’s still not in the Rock Hall of Fame.

Here’s one of her best:

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

Read more

In Other News