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U.S. CD single
|Single by Natalie Merchant|
|from the album Tigerlily|
|B-side||"I May Know the Word"|
|Length||5:59 (album version)|
|Label||Elektra, Warner Bros.|
|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. 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.
The single was released to US radio in summer 1995 and reached number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming Marchant's highest-charting solo single in the US. It is also her most successful hit in Australia, peaking at number 24 on the ARIA Singles Chart, and her third-most successful song in Canada (after "Wonder" and "Jealousy"), where it reached number 17. The single received a radio edit cutting the song down from the six-minute LP version. 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.
- Carnival (edit)
- Carnival (LP version)
- 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
- Mike Spenser – Bass, Guitar (Electric)
- Eric Henderson – Guitar (Electric)
In popular culture
- In 2000, the song was used in the Xena: Warrior Princess episode "Antony and Cleopatra".
- Prior to her execution in 2002, this song was requested by serial killer Aileen Wuornos to be played at her funeral. In 2003, the song was used in Nick Broomfield's documentary Aileen: Life And Death Of A Serial Killer. The song also serves as an entrance theme to a fictional Wuornos in American Horror Story: Hotel, portrayed by Lily Rabe.
- In 2010, the song was used in the film The Halves.
- The song appeared in the Hindsight episode "Tragic Kingdom".
- "Carnival - Natalie Merchant Attributes". AllMusic. Retrieved May 26, 2018.
- "Carnival by Natalie Merchant Songfacts". Songfacts. Retrieved May 26, 2018.
- "Australian-charts.com – Natalie Merchant – Carnival". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Top RPM Singles: Issue 2819." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 2795." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved June 9, 2018.
- "Top RPM Rock/Alternative Tracks: Issue 2734." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Íslenski Listinn Topp 40 (21.10. '95 – 27.10. '95)". Dagblaðið Vísir (in Icelandic). October 21, 1995. Retrieved October 1, 2019.
- "Natalie Merchant Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Natalie Merchant Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Natalie Merchant Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Natalie Merchant Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "Natalie Merchant Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2018.
- "RPM Top 50 Alternative Tracks of 1995". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved June 9, 2018.
- "Billboard Top 100 – 1995". Longboredsurfer.com. Archived from the original on August 15, 2009. Retrieved August 27, 2010.
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