Song of the Day, January 21: Carefree Highway by Gordon Lightfoot

Lightfoot HwyToday’s song is Carefree Highway by Gordon Lightfoot. It was the second single from his smash album Sundown, following the #1 success of the title track. Riding the early 70s wave of singer-songwriter success, this was one of his biggest hits, making #10 on the Hot 100 and spending one week on top of the Easy Listening chart.

It’s also Lightfoot at his best, weaving a personal narrative with a hint of story into a theme that resonates beyond his own experience. Ostensibly a road song, the title comes from a stretch of road outside of Phoenix with a name that could have easily been Lightfoot’s own creation. The lyrics are wistful without being maudlin, exploring an old, failed relationship with nostalgia but no blame.

Turnin’ back the pages to the times I love best
I wonder if she’ll ever do the same
Now the thing that I call livin’ is just bein’ satisfied
With knowin’ I got no one left to blame

Carefree highway, got ta see you my old flame
Carefree highway, you seen better days
The mornin’ after blues from my head down to my shoes
Carefree highway, let me slip away
Slip away on you

Enjoy this wonderful song of literal and emotional travel today.

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About Robert Hulshof-Schmidt
Freelance writer, researcher, online comic vendor, and project manager. Fan of a wide range of music -- especially folk and 80s pop -- vintage comics, British TV, and LGBT fiction.

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