Song of the Day: Gordon Lightfoot, “Carefree Highway”

Happy 83rd birthday to Canadian singer-songwriter Gordon Lightfoot. Bob Dylan once said that when he heard a Gordon Lightfoot song, he wished it would go on forever. Though he was known in Canada from the late ’60’s, and had a hit with "If You Could Read My Mind" in the US in 1970, it wasn’t until 1974 that he had his American breakthrough. "Carefree Highway," from his 1974 album Sundown, was the followup to "Sundown," and reached #1 on both the US and Canadian Adult Contemporary charts, reached #1 on the Pop charts, and #1 on the Canadian Country chart.

19 thoughts on “Song of the Day: Gordon Lightfoot, “Carefree Highway”

    1. In all fairness, it was his most-popular song. It wasn’t my favorite,either, and they played the hell out of it in Chicago, that and “If You Could Read My Mind.”


    1. The crappy songs don’t surprise me. The ’70’s were where album sales came close to the singles sales, and a lot of people would buy a whole album for one or two songs. Naturally the record companies started pushing album sales because they got much more revenue for a relatively minor increase in production costs, and pressured artists to record more album-length projects. Naturally, some of the songs were written as album filler, songs that they never intended to play in concert but they did just so they could get up to the 12 songs they needed for an album. I’m thinking there are some such songs that nevertheless became hits quite by accident, but I couldn’t point at a specific one…

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    1. This is probably my favorite of his songs, followed closely by “The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald.” He has a relatively small fan base but those who like him really love him.

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