It has been seven years since musician Carole King has released a new song but that dry spell has finally been broken. The 76-year-old has come out of retirement and taken aim at US President Donald Trump in a reworked version of her 1977 track, ‘One’.
King initially rewrote the song to play at a political fundraiser last month, but then recorded the new version in hope that it would encourage more people to participate actively in the upcoming US election.
The song features a new final verse, which King told the Guardian is “a call to action” ahead of the mid-term elections in the US.
The original lines about being “part of the energy it takes to serve each other” are now sharpened into calls to “come together as one/show ’em how it’s done/at the end of the day, we’ll be able to say/love won”.
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“It’s a song about wondering what we can do when we see injustice, and it expresses my long held belief that we — all of us humans — are most effective when we come together as ‘One’,” King explained of the track. “I was inspired to write some new lyrics for the last chorus to reflect my feelings about the 2018 election. And then I wanted to record it.”
The song also features King’s daughters Louise Goffin and Sherry Kondor on backing vocals.
King — the woman behind songs including ‘(You Make Me Feel Like A) Natural Woman’ and ‘You’ve Got a Friend’ — hasn’t written any music since her 2011 Grammy-nominated Christmas album.
The singer made her debut in 1971, with her album Tapestry, which became an immediate success. In her long, fruitful career, King has written more than two dozen chart hits for numerous artists such as Aretha Franklin, The Monkees and The Chiffons.
King isn’t the first artist to write an anti-Trump song in recent times. Last month, Barbra Streisand recorded ‘Don’t Lie to Me’, which also takes aim at the US President.
Speaking to Vanity Fair, the 76-year-old expressed her concern for America and the world, saying the songs in her new album Walls represent what is happening in the country.
“One of the songs talks about the beacon of light, and ‘Lady Liberty’ talked about the danger in the sound of silence, when people don’t speak up, when people don’t vote,” she explained. “And now we have a leader who can’t be trusted. The way he pushed [Brett] Kavanaugh onto the Supreme Court to protect himself is unconscionable; we have a leader and now a Supreme Court justice who tells lies.”