Legend of a Girl Child Linda

Album: Sunshine Superman (1966)

Songfacts®:

  • Donovan first met Linda Lawrence in 1965 when she was recovering from a broken relationship with Brian Jones of The Rolling Stones. She and Donovan dated for a short time, but not wanting the scrutiny and uncertainty of being a pop's star girlfriend all over again, Lawrence broke it off at the end of the year. They continued to have an on-off romantic relationship over the next five years, and Linda exerted a huge influence on Donovan's music. They finally married on October 2, 1970 at Windsor Registry Office.
  • This song finds Donovan exalting his lost girlfriend as an Arthurian heroine. "I realized that we didn't have to copy, that we had our own traditions," said Donovan to Mojo magazine June 2011 of the song. "One night I woke up in a hotel room in Sweden with 'Girl Child' almost fully formed in my head, and I picked up my guitar and started to play it like a harp. The song was about Linda, of course, but it was also about the loss of innocence that Blake wrote about. You create the circumstances for songs to appear and then you catch them, like fish in the net."

    William Blake (1757-1827) was a British mystic poet and artist who is best known to many for penning the words to "Jerusalem." His 1789 Songs of Innocence poetry collection eloquently showed how the human spirit blossoms when allowed its own free movement. Unable to find a publisher, Blake and his wife engraved and printed them at home.

Comments: 1

  • Sara from Silver Spring, MdThis was arranged and orchestrated by John Cameron who arranged many Donovan songs. It is rather long and about six minutes.
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