Carnival (Natalie Merchant song)

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Carnival natalie merchant.jpg
U.S. CD single
Single by Natalie Merchant
from the album Tigerlily
B-side "I May Know the Word"
Released 1995
Format Single
Recorded 1995
Genre Alternative rock[1]
Length 5:59 (album version)
4:01 (edit)
Label Elektra, Warner Bros.
Songwriter(s) Natalie Merchant
Producer(s) Natalie Merchant
Natalie Merchant singles chronology

"Carnival" is a 1995 song written and produced by singer-songwriter Natalie Merchant and was the lead single from her debut solo album Tigerlily. The single was released to U.S. airwaves in the summer of 1995 and went straight to the number 10 spot on the Billboard Hot 100, thus becoming her highest-charting solo single. The single received a radio edit cutting the song down from the six-minute LP version. In the lyrics, the protagonist compares the many colorful sights and sounds of day-to-day life in New York City to a carnival. Merchant was inspired to write the song after visiting the city for the first time when she was 16, claiming she was fascinated with the residents' unusual lifestyles, as she has grown up in the country.[2]

The video for the song, directed by Melodie McDaniel, shows scenes of Merchant walking the streets of New York City taking street photographs with a Leica M3.

Track listing[edit]

  1. Carnival (edit)
  2. Carnival (LP version)
  3. I May Know the Word


  • Jennifer Turner – Guitar (Acoustic), Guitar (Electric), Vocals (background)
  • John Holbrook – Organ, Guitar (Electric), Engineer
  • Katell Keineg – Vocals (background)
  • Barrie Maguire – Bass, Guitar (12 String)
  • Natalie Merchant – Vocals, Piano, Organ, Vibraphone
  • Peter Yanowitz – Percussion, Drums
  • Matt Henderson – Bass, Guitar (Electric)
  • Eric Schenkman – Guitar (Electric)


In popular culture[edit]


External links[edit]