Rainy Day Man


“The “rainy day man” was a dope connection. I had taken my first opiate in 1966.”James Taylor (573)

Something In The Way She Moves


“The song is about an early girlfriend and the calm you feel in the presence of someone who knows you really well. When I heard George Harrison used the title for the opening words of “Something,” I was thrilled.”James Taylor (573)

Sweet Baby James


“I came back to the States [around 1969 – Ed] and found out my brother Alex had had a kid. I decided to write a song for the baby boy, who was named after me. A little cowboy song. It starts as a lullaby, then the second half of the song – “the turnpike from Stockbridge to Boston…” – talks about what music means to me. It gets pretty spiritual by the end. I think it’s my best song.”James Taylor (573)

Steamroller


“It was a joke. There were a lot of white guys playing the blues [during the Flying Machine days, c1971 – Ed], college students singing Howlin’ Wolf and Muddy Waters, and it seemed comical to me. “Steamroller” was just meant to be a takeoff.”James Taylor (573)

A Junkie’s Lament


“I’ve got a lot of recovery songs. This one’s a warning not to think of a junkie as a complete functioning human being.”James Taylor (573)

Never Die Young


“This song is written from the point of view of someone who has given up and is looking at the lives of two young people who aren’t caught up in the morass of life as the narrator knows it. It’s a sad song, but also hopeful and celebratory.”James Taylor (573)

Copperline


“This is another song about home, about my father, about a childhood that was very peaceful, which is a rare thing today. I felt like I was part of a landscape in those days – the trees, the streams and the rivers, the animals that lived there.”James Taylor (573)

Angels Of Fenway


“I knew that I wanted to write about this miracle 2004 season against the Yankees. If you’re a Red Sox fan, or even just a baseball fan, it was an amazing event. I cast it as a grandmother who was born the last time the Red Sox won, and she dies on the day they finally do it again.”James Taylor (573)

Snow Time


““Snow Time” is about these people who have been exiled to Canada from a warm, passionate place in the midst of a freezing Canadian winter and are trying to reignite this flame. The frozen yankee comes across it and is transformed. It’s a song about the power of music.”James Taylor (581)

You and I Again


“It’s a love song to someone who you feel as though you must have known before. That song is about Kim [James’ wife – Ed] and what it felt like to encounter her, to meet her for the first time.”James Taylor (581)

My Traveling Star


“Is a song about the tension between home and the road. It talks about my fictional father, ‘My daddy used to ride the rails.’ And the simple message is that I hope I can stop, and not be addicted to moving on. Coming back home [to Carly Simon in Martha’s Vineyard – Ed] was like going to jail. The sheets and the blankets and the babies and all.”James Taylor (866)