Saturday, November 24, 2007


One pop music revelation made public; a few gazillion more to go. It seems the superstar Neil Diamond has finally laid his musical burden down (we didn't know he was carrying one) and told the world that his huge hit, "Sweet Caroline" was written about none other than Caroline Kennedy. A friend sent me the following link, which I will do my tech-impaired best to put here for you so you can read the whole thing for yourselves. I must admit, it never occurred to me to even question if there was a real Caroline behind the song...and I just finished a whole chapter for my next book (the sequel to Papa Do Run) called "Peanut Butter and Mashed Potatoes," that deals with real people in some of our favorite rock and pop songs. I did come up with a lot of surprises, but this one wasn't even a green blip on the radar. Apparently, Neil Diamond, who is now 66 years old (when did that happen?) saw a photograph ages ago of young Caroline standing with her pony. The image stayed with him a several years later he wrote "Sweet Caroline." It's obviously more a song "inspired" by her than a song written about her, but still, it's a very cool piece of music trivia, wouldn't you agree? Call it another thread in the rich tapestry of our popular culture. And while we're sort of on the subject, I'll just add that ( in my opinion) while the Founding Fathers were wise to call for a separation of church and state, thank goodness they didn't say anything about keeping politics and entertainment apart. Where would we be? For one thing, we probably wouldn't have had this great song from Neil. In conclusion, I think I can speak for all of us when I say that, even though the identity behind "Sweet Caroline" never bugged us the way certain other songs have...for example that mysterious, perennially unidentified vain guy with the apricot scarf...we're all very glad Neil Diamond stepped up and revealed his source.

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