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Late November

[Sandy Denny]

Sandy Denny’s song Late November was recorded by Fotheringay in Autumn 1970 at Sound Techniques for their then unfinished second album. The instrumental track served as the basis for three different versions:

  1. The first version to appear was released in 1971 on the Island sampler El Pea. It is a bonus track on the 2005 CD reissue of The North Star Grassman and the Ravens and finally found its proper place in 2008 on the Fotheringay 2 CD.
  2. Sandy redubbed her vocals and Richard Thompson added guitar for the version released on her first solo album, the 1971 The North Star Grassman and the Ravens, on her 1999 compilation Listen Listen, and in 2000 on her 2 CD anthology No More Sad Refrains.
  3. A version without Richard Thompson, but with the second vocal track appeared in 1986 on the Who Knows Where the Time Goes? box set, in 1987 on The Best of Sandy Denny and in 2004 on A Boxful of Treasures, though all claimed to contain the El Pea version. Late editions of the WKWTTG box set identified this as an “alternative version”.

The different vocals can easily be distinguished in the verse following the guitar solo. On El Pea, she sings in the last line of verse 3: “The tears which are shed, oh, they won’t come from me”, and in the other versions: “Oh, the tears which are shed, they won’t come from me” with a very long drawn “me”.

A live studio recording from 24 August 1971 for the BBC Radio 1 show “Sounds of the Seventies”, hosted by Bob Harris, was broadcast on 6 September 1971 and published both on the 1997 CD The BBC Sessions 1971-73 and on the 3CD+DVD set Live at the BBC of 2007. The latter box also has on its DVD Sandy’s only remaining TV appearance, recorded 15 September 1971 for the BBC TV show “One in Ten: Sandy Denny”. This set included The North Star Grassman and the Ravens, Crazy Lady Blues, and Late November.

Cover Versions

  1. An extended Fairport Convention (Allcock / Mattacks / Nicol / Pegg / Sanders + Vikki Clayton, Jerry Donahue and Richard Thompson) live at Cropredy 1991; released on the charity compilation All Through the Year (1991)
  2. The Julie July Band on their CD Who Knows Where the Time Goes? (July 2018)


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