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The Essential Boomer Album Collection - Part 9

Tapestry (1971)

Carole King was already one of rock’s most successful songwriters. But no one could have predicted that when she finally started singing her own songs, she would create one of the best selling albums of all-time by a female vocalist, especially when her only previous album had not climbed higher than #84 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Tapestry has sold more than 25 million copies and is considered one of the top 50 albums ever released by a rock artist.

Together with her then-husband, Gerry Goffin, King had already secured a place in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame co-writing such tunes as:

  • Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow
  • Take Good Care of My Baby
  • Some Kind of Wonderful
  • The Loco-Motion
  • Chains
  • Go Away Little Girl
  • Up on the Roof
  • One Fine Day
  • I’m into Something Good
  • Just Once in My Life
  • Pleasant Valley Sunday

And so many more.

While King often sang on the demo discs (records produced quickly and only intended to demonstrate the song to potential recording artists), she was reluctant to release an album of her own. Friends, including James Taylor, kept encouraging her. So in the spring of 1970, she released Writer. It stiffed.

Undeterred, the very next year she released Tapestry. It was like a dam bursting. Powered by a monster double-sided single “It’s Too Late” b/w “I Feel the Earth Move,” Tapestry roared up the album charts, becoming the first album by a solo female artist to ever rack up at least 10 million in sales.

She copped four Grammys that year for Album of the Year, Best Female Pop Performance, Song of the Year and Record of the Year. Tapestry remained on the Billboard charts for 313 weeks (second only to Dark Side of the Moon).

Her subsequent albums have been very well received, five of them landing in the Top 10.

There is no question that any essential album collection for a Baby Boomer has to include Tapestry. It’s not “too late” to include it in yours.

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