#837: Carrie’s Gone by J.C. Stone
Peak Month: November 1974
Peak Position #9
9 weeks on Vancouver’s CKLG Chart
Peak Position on Billboard Hot 100 ~ did not chart
YouTube.com: “Carrie’s Gone”
J.C. Stone was a Vancouver recording artist in the 1970s and 1980s. In 1974 he released a single titled “Carrie’s Gone”.
“Carrie’s Gone” was written by Bob Johnston, an obscure songwriter who has left no trace online.
The song concerns someone named Carrie who’s left her home and relationship for good. She tried to tell the guy she was with about the problems in the relationship. He reflects later “that I just couldn’t hear, I sat and drank my beer.” The ex-lover now wishes he could turn back time and they could be together. As it is now, he sings “can’t you hear me calling Carrie, can’t you hear my cry. You’re too young my baby, you’re too young my baby, too young to die.”
As listeners we can only wonder why the ex-lover thinks her life is in danger. Is he catastrophizing? Or does he know something about Carrie’s state of mental health, or lack of care for her own well-being, that would place her in danger? If she is “too young,” does she not have family or friends she can turn to in order to get her life back in balance? Or at least people who can provide her with some sanctuary and protection from those who may wish to do her harm, including possibly herself?
But then, as with many pop songs, the lyrics may just leave open dire possibilities without meaning for us to hear them too closely. Perhaps, like the ex-lover, we are meant to listen to “Carrie’s Gone” while we sit and drink our beer.
“Carrie’s Gone” peaked at #9 in Vancouver (BC), and cracked the Top 30 in Windsor (ON), Charlottesville (WV) and Kelowna (BC).
In 1976 J.C. Stone released a single “Don’t Shoot Me”/”Woman In Spring” which flopped commercially. In 1980 J.C. Stone released his only album, Stealin’ The Night.
The title track, “Stealin’ The Night“, peaked at #7 in Vancouver (BC) and #11 in Regina (SK). While “Stealin’ The Night” was still on the pop chart in Vancouver, J.C. Stone’s next release “The Sound Of My Heartbeat” appeared for one week on the CKLG Top 30 in January 1981.
After 1981, J.C. Stone presumably continued for some years as a performer. This spare profile of him is found on Discogs.com: “Canadian singer, songwriter and musician from Vancouver, British Columbia active in the 1970s and 1980s.” Otherwise, there is no profile of him on canadianbands.com or other websites that usually feature Canadian recording stars. J.C. Stone is one of those recording artists who is truly off-the-grid.
West coast actress and singer, Jane Mortifee, was a backing singer for Stone’s album Stealin’ The Night. I emailed to her to learn if she recalled anything about him. But, from what she could remember, it seemed Jane Mortifee went to the recording studio to get her backing vocals on tape. The recording engineer mixed in the backing vocals with J.C. Stone’s lead vocals and other instruments, after Stone appeared in the studio for a separate booking. As Mortifee never met him, she couldn’t add anything to fill out a picture of this forgotten Vancouver area singer-songwriter.
January 16, 2021
“J.C. Stone profile,” Discogs.com.
“CKLG Thirty,” CKLG 730 AM, Vancouver, BC, November 15, 1974.
For more song reviews visit the Countdown.
The website 45cat lists this record and comments “Bob Johnston is J. C. Stone”.
Sure enough, Discogs.com lists Bob Johnston (12) – as there are many musicians who go by Bob Johnston – and the only credit is for J.C. Stone’s “Stealin’ The Night” album. And the concept for the album is credited to Bob Johnston.
For Bob Johnston. From Jennifer Mulder. (Cousin). Trying to locate you . Something about our grandfather. Can you please email me at email@example.com thanks hope all is well Jenn
Bob Johnston was a lawyer, called to the bar about 1968 or so. ut he lost interest in law practise about five years later and got into other things, including music. He played piano and guitar but his singing was limited. Since he had his own money, he simply hired those involved in the recordings. He didn’t have a regular gig. Although afterward, he did a little work as a single lounge singer, mostly strumming the guitar. We lost contact over the years and I would really like to know how he’s going. He would be close to 80 now. Bill
To me the meaning of the song is simple. No deep analysis required.
The phrase “Carrie’s Gone” means Carrie is dead, for whatever reason.
“She ain’t coming back no more” offers further evidence.
The song already says she was “fifteen and all alone”, therefore “too young to die”.