Carole King

One of the most successful songwriters of all time, responsible for creating 118 US hit singles, Carole King penned some of the biggest hits of the early 1960s before finding fame in her own right as a hugely successful solo star. Raised in Brooklyn, New York, she dated Neil Sedaka as a teenager and formed a songwriting partnership with Gerry Goffin while at Queen's College that produced the classic Shirelles hit Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow, the first ever US Number 1 by an all-girl group. The pair went on to write Bobby Vee's Take Good Care Of My Baby, Little Eva's The Loco-motion and Go Away Little Girl by Steve Lawence (all US Number 1s), as well as the Aretha Franklin classic (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman. King's career as a performer stuttered until she re-recorded a collection of the hits she'd written for others on second album Tapestry (1971). It sold over 25 million copies, became a huge international smash and spent 15 consecutive weeks at Number 1, making it the longest time a female solo artist has spent at the top of the US album charts. With a minimalist, laid-back style, King's piano ballads produced more US chart-topping albums in Music (1971) and Wrap Around Joy (1974) while James Taylor had a huge hit with her song You've Got A Friend, though her commercial popularity waned through the 1980s. The four-time Grammy Award-winner still continues to record and perform and actively campaigns for environmental and political issues.

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