Carole King scored another hit with this single, where she bemoans the fact that she and the man she loves can't be together, and mentions that people in general were becoming more disconnected from each other. It was the fourth single from her famous Tapestry album, which sold over 11 million copies. King wrote or co-wrote all the songs on the album, ushering in the singer/songwriter genre.
In an interview with Rock's Backpages, Lou Adler, who produced Tapestry and owned Carole King's record company, said: "'So Far Away' is my favorite song on Tapestry. I use the phrase a lot, 'Doesn't anybody stay in one place anymore?' It's the road, it's the people traveling. It just seems to me an anthem of that particular time and so well written and one of the earlier songs she wrote for this album."
Seth Swirsky, who was a staff songwriter for Chappell Music in '80s and '90s before recording his own material as a solo artist, cites Tapestry as an album that record companies would shy away from today, as King would not be considered marketable. He told us: "She needed to get her own thing going. And it turned out to be an album that hit everybody, what they were thinking and feeling, right at that moment. America in the '60s, everybody was moving away to San Francisco, and flowers in their hair, and it was tumultuous. But here it was a Tapestry of home again."
This was a favorite of Amy Winehouse and she often sung it with her father, Mitch. Her funeral service on 26 July 2011 ended with a rendition of the song.
Rod Stewart recorded this for Tapestry Revisited: A Tribute to Carole King, a 1995 track-by-track remake of the album by various singers.