Lady Gaga sang the words “I love you” to Carole King in a solo performance of You’ve Got a Friend at the 2014 MusicCares Person of the Year gala evening on Friday night. She also confessed that it was one of her favorite songs, and that Carole King had been an inspiration to her when she was at high school. Carole King was honored at the event as Person of the Year.
One of several top musicians performing at the annual charity event, Lady Gaga received a standing ovation for her rendition of the pop classic, You’ve Got a Friend. Winning the hearts of all those present, she changed the lyrics a little towards the end singing, “You’ve got a friend,” and then adding “yes you do, Carole, I love you.”
Sitting center stage, wearing a jewelry-embellished, long white dress and spunky sunglasses, Lady Gaga sat at a white-colored baby grand piano while she thanked Carole King for “the way you sing to us in your music.” She said that when she was a student you would play the song over and over, really believing that Carole King was her friend.
The event raised more than $5.5 million dollars from various activities including a “silent auction.” $120,000 was paid for a vinyl copy of Carole King’s landmark Tapestry album that features the song, You’ve Got a Friend. A total of nine of the 12 tracks on the album were performed at the event. Performing artists included Pink, Gloria Estafan, Alicia Keys, Carole King herself, and of course Lady Gaga who added the words “Carole, I love you” when she sang the song You’ve Got a Friend.
Before she sang a six-song finale, Carole King told her audience that she was first and last – and “always a songwriter.” She thanked her writing partner and former husband, Gerry Goffin as well as several other people including James Taylor who, despite public opinion, was never romantically attached to her.
The popular singer, who turns 72 next weekend, is a music icon whose story is told in the Broadway musical, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. She also wrote her memoirs that were published two years ago, to coincide with her seventieth birthday. Titled A Natural Women, the book is her own work and did not entail the assistance of a ghostwriter. The thread through the book is that music is “her normal.”
The super-star who was the center of attention on Friday says in her memoirs that she really didn’t aim to be in the spotlight. Though she was determined to succeed, she didn’t see herself as “a great singer” like Barbra Streisand or Joni Mitchell. Her original ambition was to craft songs that other artists could sing.
Carole King confirmed this, yet again, at MusicCares, saying that as a songwriter her dream always was, and still is, “to hear great singers perform my songs.” On Friday she heard a number of highly talented, very successful singers perform her songs, including, of course, Lady Gaga who honored her in a very special way when she sang “I love you.”
By Penny Swift