I was reading one of my favorite blogs earlier today – Nashville Noise – and there was a story about singer-songwriter Will Payne Harrison.
According to a previous story about Harrison in Nashville Noise, he’s “got a diverse musical background that includes traditional cajun music, Louisiana blues, New Orleans brass bands, “swamp pop” and Zydeco. He’s a melting pot of musical influences, all of which can be heard in his personal unique blend. If you’re a fan of singer-songwriters with an Americana or roots sound, you’ll be a fast fan of Harrison.”
Anyway, the story I was reading today was about Harrison’s cover of the song Caroline, by The Rayo Brothers. I went to check the original, and it is a wonderful song:
After listening, I started to think about how many songs are about a woman named Caroline.
I think the most obvious one is Sweet Caroline, by Neil Diamond. It’s one of the all-time classics.
Another one that immediately came to mind, and perhaps not as well known to many people, is Caroline by The Clarks. I wrote a post three years ago about how I was lucky enough to attend a house concert featuring The Clarks, and here is a short clip of them performing the song:
If you want to see them doing the song in concert 20 years prior to that, here you go:
Two very different versions, but both great.
Then I started wondering if there were other songs featuring Caroline, and thanks to Ranker, I came across a list of 41 songs about Caroline. A few of them are repeats. For example, there are four versions of Sweet Caroline. Besides Neil Diamond, there are versions by Frank Sinatra, Waylon Jennings, and Roy Orbison, none of which I had ever heard before. There were also songs about Caroline featuring Fleetwood Mac, Peter Frampton, and the Beach Boys. Again, none of those ring a bell.
But then, as often happens, my mind started wandering again, and I was curious about what the most popular woman’s name in songs might be. Surely Caroline would be one of the more popular ones. Fortunately, the web had an answer (I don’t think it is too scientific, but I’m going with it).
According to Ultimate Guitar, here are the top five:
- Mary (not a surprise, that’s what I would have guessed. And fun fact, at least according to one of the comments, is that Bruce Springsteen alone has more than 10 songs featuring Mary. The best, of course, is Thunder Road).
- Jennifer (I see this name and I think 867-5309)
The names also include variations, like Marie or Susie. Sadly, as you can see, no Caroline…
One final thought is that this post highlights to me why I love the world wide web.
Starting with a post about an up and coming singer-songwriter from Nashville, it led me to relive a wonderful house concert, which led me to find out the most popular woman’s name in music, which ultimately led me to create this post.
Thank you, Tim Berners-Lee!
*image from Flaming Text