Carmel Magazine

Summer/Fall 2020

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 131 of 171

A Way with Words The Jazz Jour ney of Legendar y Songwr iter Car roll Coates B Y M I C H A E L C H AT F I E L D S ongwriting is a multidisciplinary calling. A songsmith is equal parts composer, poet, musician, philosopher and entrepreneur. Many times, it's an unsung profes- sion: the performer who interprets the song gets the credit and adulation, the songwriter gets a credit set in microscopic type on a CD cover or record label. Sure, there are exceptions. Individuals such as Cole Porter, Irving Berlin and Johnny Mercer come to mind, as do teams like Rodgers and Hammerstein, and the Gershwin brothers. The compositions that Carmel's own Carroll Coates has produced in a career that stretches back to the 1940s are certainly worthy of the work produced by that list of greats. And while his has not become a household name, the songs he penned are quite familiar to aficionados of the Great American Songbook and lovers of great songs in general. Carroll Coates wrote his first song, "Walking Around in a Dream," at age 17. More than seven decades later, he can sing ever y line for you in his soft London accent—and is willing to do so on any occasion. The tune was recorded and played on the BBC—a huge coup for such a young man— setting the stage for what would be a long and successful 130 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S U M M E R / F A L L 2 0 2 0 London native and current Carmelite Carroll Coates wrote "London by Night," a song recorded by Frank Sinatra that launched his long career.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Carmel Magazine - Summer/Fall 2020