Carly Simon Adds New Mystery to ‘You’re So Vain’ Saga

Singer's new verse to iconic, philanderer-shaming song raises more questions.

May 11, 2017 11:33 am
Carly Simon Adds New Wrinkle to 'You're So Vain' Saga
Carly Simon (RB/Redferns)

Just who was Carly Simon singing about in her 1972 No. 1-hit song “You’re So Vain?” That question is the stuff of Rock’n’Roll legend. Because after all, the song is three verses long, and Simon has had a number of high-profile relationships over the years, including ones with fellow singer-songwriter James Taylor and actor Warren Beatty. Even Simon’s backup vocalist on the track turned some heads: Mick Jagger.

In promoting a new book in 2015, Simon told People magazine that the second verse was, in fact, about Beatty. In other words:

Oh, you had me several years ago,
When I was still naive.
Well, you said that we made such a pretty pair
And that you would never leave,
But you gave away the things you loved
And one of them was me.

But the men in the other two verses—one including a scene from a party (first verse) and trip to horse-racing mecca Saratoga (third verse)—have never been identified.

But now, as the Telegraph notes, Simon has thrown fans yet another curveball, singing a never-before-heard fourth verse on a BBC show, which goes:

A friend of yours revealed to me
That you’d loved me all the time.
Kept it secret from your wives,
You believed it was no crime.

The additional pre-chorus would’ve gone, “Maybe that is why I have tried to dismiss you/Tried to dismiss you …” before going into the chorus.

No word yet on who that new verse was written about, however.

Listen to the original below.


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