For Folk’s Sake: A History of Lovers and Loners

Brandon Specktor

The right words are hard to find. Whether this Valentine’s Day finds you wrapped in the arms of your one-and-only or drinking alone in the dark, take comfort in the poetry of lovers and loners immortalized in popular folk and blues. Heighten your spirits: Serenade someone this Sunday.


Even if that someone is your cat.


Bob Dylan


For Lovers: “”I’ll Remember You””

Available on: Empire Burlesque, 1985

Lyrics: “”When there is no more / You cut to the core / Quicker than anyone I knew. When I’m all alone / In the great unknown / I’ll remember you.””


For Loners: “”Man of Constant Sorrow””

On: Bob Dylan, 1962

Lyrics: “”Through ice and snows, sleet and rain / I’m a-bound to ride that morning railroad / Perhaps I’ll die up on that train.””


Simon and Garfunkel


For Lovers: “”For Emily, Wherever I May Find Her””

On: Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, 1972

Lyrics: “”And when you ran to me / Your cheeks flushed with the night / We walked on frosted fields / Of juniper and lamplight.””


For Loners: “”I Am A Rock””

On: Sounds of Silence, 1965

Lyrics: “”I won’t disturb the slumber / of feelings that have died / If I never loved / I never would have cried.””


Janis Joplin


For Lovers: “”Me and Bobby McGee””

On: Pearl, 1971

Lyrics: “”And feeling good was easy, Lord / When he sang the blues / You know feeling good was good enough for me / Good enough for me and my Bobby McGee.””


For Loners: “”A Woman Left Lonely””

On: Pearl, 1971

Lyrics: “”Well, the fevers of the night / They burn an unloved woman / Yeah, those red-hot flames / Try to push old love aside.””


T. Rex


For Lovers: “”Jeepster””

On: Electric Warrior, 1971

Lyrics: “”You slide so good / With bones so fair / You’ve got the universe / Reclining in your hair.””


For Loners: “”Lean Woman Blues””

On: Electric Warrior, 1971

Lyrics: “”I’m like a beggar in the sand / on the beach of the land of you / and I’m blue.””


Woodie Guthrie


For Lovers and Loners: “”Little Darling (At My Window Sad & Lonely)””

On: My Dusty Road, 2009

Lyrics: “”Ships may ply the stormy ocean / Planes may fly the stormy sky / Sad and lonely but remember / I will love you till I die.””