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‘A Thousand Miles’ is written and sung by American pop singer- Vanessa Carlton. Carlton began work on the song in 1998, when she was only seventeen and a half.
The song was originally titled ‘Interlude’ by Carlton but after some intervention by one of the producers- Ron Fair, it was finally titled ‘A Thousand Miles’. It was released when it featured on the film- Legally Blonde’s soundtrack in the year 2001. However, the official music video was released only in February 2002.
Being released as the first song of Carlton’s debut album- ‘Be Not Nobody’, and even before the release of the album in April 2002 (within a span of less than two months), ‘A Thousand Miles’ had already become popular on charts worldwide. The song also made it to the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100.
In the video, we see Carlton enter her garage, uncover the piano, and as she starts to play, the piano drives her through an expanse- of busy streets, markets, along a downtown parade, a beach, and a play area; speeding past bikers, running horses, children playing and the shoppers and musicians in the background, until the sun sets, and it’s dark when she finally returns to her garage. During this drive, she narrates her craving to meet the person she so misses and expresses that she is eager to see him even if it means traveling a thousand miles to be with him.
Carlton had said that the song was about ‘lost love’. In her words, it is “a combination of reality and fantasy. It’s about a love that so consumes you that you do anything for it. That’s how I felt at that time.”
I suppose a lot of people would relate to this song- the ones who’ve loved and suffered a heartbreak, the ones in love- in a long-distance relationship, or now being unable to meet amid the pandemic fears, and for many others- if we listen to this song now, we relate especially as she says, “I’m homebound”. Incidentally, Carlton said recently, to all the ones quarantining right now, that she’s proud of us. Also, she gently reminds us all- “Don’t walk anywhere.”
Watch this classic hit- Carlton’s most successful single here….
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