Legendary songwriter, author, Grammy Winner, Oscar Winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Carly Simon turns 80 on 25th June.
Carly Simon he rose to fame in the 70s, but continued to have success in the 80s and beyond thanks to her honest and poetic lyrics and ear for a melody. She originally started out as a folk style singer songwriter, but working with producer Richard Perry on the 1972 album 'No Secrets' took her music in a different direction.
We look at some of her classic tracks.
YOU'RE SO VAIN
Released in 1972, it's probably Carly Simon's most identifiable song. In August 2014, the UK's Official Charts Company crowned it the ultimate song of the 1970s.
The subject of the song was a subject of much discussion for years, until Simon revealed that at least the second verse was written about Warren Beatty.
The song also features backing vocals from Mick Jagger (and Simon has also stated that the song wasn't about him).
LET THE RIVER RUN
LTRR is the theme song to the 1988 film 'Working Girl.' The song won the Academy Award for Best Original Song, the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and the Grammy Award for Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or Television.
The song is an anthem that fits the film's storyline of two women fighting to get ahead in the corporate world during the 80s. They lyrics are also empowering not only for women, but anybody advocating change.
Written by Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards, the track features on the soundtrack for the 1982 film 'Soup For One'. The film was a flop, but the song was endlesly given radioplay during the 80s, and is still played today. The song became a top 10 hit in the UK. Simon's daughter also features in the video pouring a bottle of wine over a man's head
YOU BELONG TO ME
This song was co-written with The Doobie Brother's Michael McDonald. The track originally featured on their seventh studio album 'Livin' on the Fault Line'. The song was made famous by Simon when she recorded it for her seventh studio album, Boys in the Trees (1978).
THE RIGHT THING TO DO
Taken from her album 'No Secrets', the song reached number 17 in the UK. The track was written for her then husband, James Taylor. It deals with romantic idealism verses the reality of a relationship and is heartwarming and heartbreaking in equal measure.
IT WAS SO EASY
The song from the ' No Secrets' album, is a wonderful coming of age song with lyrics by Simon's friend Jacob Brackman, who wrote the song after Simon had given him a cassetee of her guitar part and rough melody.
The original single was credited to Inez Foxx with vocal accompaniment by her brother Charlie. Simon's version features kn the. 'Hotcakes' album from 1974. It was a song that James Taylor and his sisters had sung in their childhood. Unsurprisingly it was a hit. aaa moon also overcame her stage fright to perform this version.
COMING AROUND AGAIN
Another Carly Simon song that featured in a film, this time 1986's 'Heartburn'. The song gave Simon a reasurgence.
KISSING WITH CONFIDENCE
The Will Powers track features uncredited nov als from Simon. The song was written by Lynn Goldsmith aka Will Powers and taken from her her 1983 album Dancing for Mental Health. It was written by Goldsmith, Jacob Brackman, Nile Rodgers, Todd Rundgren, and Steve Winwood.
NOBODY DOES IT BETTER
"Nobody Does It Better" is a power ballad and the theme song for the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). Composed by Marvin Hamlisch with lyrics by Carole Bayer Sager, the song was produced by Richard Perry and performed by Carly Simon. It was the first Bond theme song to be titled differently from the name of the film since Dr. No (1962), although the phrase "the spy who loved me" is included in the lyrics. The song was released as a single from the film's soundtrack album, and became a major worldwide hit.
Among the most successful Bond themes, the song spent three weeks at No. 2 on the US Billboard Hot 100, kept out of the top spot by Debby Boone's "You Light Up My Life". It hit No. 1 on the Billboard Easy Listening chart, where it stayed for seven weeks, becoming the No. 1 Adult Contemporary hit of 1977. The song was certified Gold by the RIAA, signifying sales of one million copies in the US. It also reached No. 7 on the UK Singles Chart, and was certified Silver by the BPI. The song received Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations for Best Original Song in 1978, losing both to "You Light Up My Life" from the 1977 film of the same title. At the 20th Annual Grammy Awards held in 1978, "Nobody Does It Better" received a nomination for Song of the Year, and Simon was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female.
In 2004, "Nobody Does it Better" was honored by the American Film Institute as the 67th greatest film song as part of their 100 Years Series. In 2012, Rolling Stone ranked it the third-greatest James Bond theme song, while Billboard ranked it the second-greatest. In 2021, USA Today crowned "Nobody Does it Better" the greatest James Bond Theme Song. The song has been performed live by Celine Dion and Radiohead; indeed, Radiohead's lead singer, Thom Yorke, called it the "sexiest song ever written".
Background and composition
"Nobody Does It Better" is Simon's longest-charting hit, as well as the most successful hit of hers that she did not write herself. Her earlier hit "You're So Vain" spent three weeks at No. 1; however, its chart run was two months shorter than that of "Nobody Does It Better". The title of the theme was later used for Simon's 1999 greatest hits compilation, The Very Best of Carly Simon: Nobody Does It Better.
Lyrically, "Nobody Does It Better" is a "lust-drunk anthem" about James Bond's sexual prowess. In a 1977 documentary on the making of The Spy Who Loved Me, Marvin Hamlisch said that the decision to ask Simon to perform the song was made after lyricist Carole Bayer Sager remarked that the lyrics sounded "incredibly vain", in reference to Simon's 1972 song "You're So Vain".