The Carole King Songbook
by Jim Allen | January 25, 2014
Carole King's career has not exactly lacked for triumphs or tributes. With her then-husband Gerry Goffin, the Brooklyn-born songsmith penned countless hits in the '60s for everyone from The Drifters to The Monkees, and she was a key figure in New York City's Brill Building "songwriting factory" scene. Toward that decade's end, King relocated to L.A., where her own recording career blossomed; her 1971 album Tapestry garnered an armload of Grammys and multiplatinum status, placing King at the center of the burgeoning singer/songwriter movement.
Later, she was inducted into both the Songwriters Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, among other honors. But 2014 brought a whole new array of homages to the septuagenarian songwriter, including the Broadway premiere of Beautiful, a musical based on her life and work, and the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences' prestigious MusiCares Person of the Year award. Trying to sum up the stellar songbook of Carole King in a single playlist is a fool's game, but this collection of King's own killer cuts and the legendary tunes she wrote for others is at least a start.