Mexico

Album: Gorilla (1975)
Charted: 49
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • James sings about Mexico, then says he's "Never really been" there. Actually, he refers to having been in Mexico for a concert, but coming down with traveler's diarrhea (Montezuma's revenge). He canceled the show, spending the whole time in his hotel room, which greatly disappointed him. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Joel - Toms River, NJ
  • David Crosby and Graham Nash sang the harmonies. Taylor was married to Carly Simon at the time, and she also sang on the album. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Christine - Chicago, IL
  • Jimmy Buffett remade this song on his album Barometer Soup. Buffett pays tribute to Taylor several times in the song. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jen - Boulder, CO

Comments: 13

  • Simon from FloridaWell at least someone here went beyond the seemingly innocuous lyrics. James Taylor was a noted heroin addict. The song would appear to be about heroin south of the border. A couple of things people seem to have missed:
    -- "Americana got the sleepy eye, but her body's still shaking like a live wire," apparently refers to (from people in the know--definition is to the best of my recollection) someone who has just taken a dose of heroin after a lapse, her eyes are sleepy but her body is still trembling.

    -- "She gets a long letter sends back a postcard times are hard." My understanding--again from others who would be in a position to know--is that this is a double entendre. It may also mean exactly what it literally says. But, there was a period (shortly after the song was released) when cocaine was apparently sent from other countries to the United States by hiding it in a postcard somehow (I forget the details of how exactly it was done). But supposedly people made money this way.
    Just my two cents.
  • William Ken from NashvilleYeaaa......this is about how JT went to Mexico, and partied with a bunch hookers while drinking TQ and beer while eating Taco Bell....hung over and having diarrhea all at the same time.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn September 28th 1975, "Mexico" by James Taylor entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #90; and November 2nd, 1975 it peaked at #49 {for 2 weeks} and spent 8 weeks on the Top 100...
    It reached on #5 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Tracks chart...
    Between 1970 and 1978 he had twenty Top 100 records; five made the Top 10 with one reaching #1, "You've Got A Friend" for 1 week on July 25th, 1971...
    Mr. Taylor will celebrate his 67th birthday come next March 12th {2015}.
  • Glenn from Chapala, MexicoIf you would just simply LOOK AT the lyrics, you would see that this song was not written by James Taylor. It was written by Ronald Paul Morin.
  • Terry from Colchester, Vt@Mike, Taco Bell isn't Mexican Food. It's dog food.
  • Richard from New York City, NyI saw him do this song in concert, and he used a tape recorder, timed perfectly, do reproduce the background singers, Crosby & Nash. It was cool.
  • Terry from Roxboro, RiThis song is about being addicted to heroin. I have listened over and over...all the signs are there....I have been there myself. Call James Taylor and ask him. I live 20 miles from Chapel Hill. Sleepy eyes and body shaking like a live wire. I rest my case.
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScFroom ths songfacts, it seems like he's been there, but hasn't really been there. What I mean is was, physically in Mexico, but he never really got to experience Mexico.
  • Annabelle from Eugene, OrWhat happened when James got Traveler's Diarrhea? Was it because he drank the water, not realizing it was tainted?
  • Mike from Ft. Lauderdale, FlThis song always makes me hungry for Mexican food. Damn it, just thinking about it now and I have to get some Taco Bell for lunch.
  • Eric from Vista, CaThis song always puts a smile on my face. Pretty much any James Taylor song does that to me though. He is definitely one of music's greatest artists.
  • Ariel from Charlotte, NcThis song is incredibly catchy, I think because of the pseudo-Latin instruments. However, I resent it because he says "I've never really been so I don't really know... guess I'll have to go now." So it seems like he's buying into the stereotype (siestas, slow pace, sensual, very poor) without checking it out for himself. Now it may be that way but you can't just write a song titled for a place without knowing what you're talking about. Plus it's a good story - why does he have to ruin it by saying "I don't really know"?
  • Carly from San Diego, CaThis is an amazing song. It really describes how it feels to be in Mexico. I also find it interesting that Crosby and Nash sang harmony
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Modern A Cappella with Peder Karlsson of The Real Group

Modern A Cappella with Peder Karlsson of The Real GroupSong Writing

The leader of the Modern A Cappella movement talks about the genre.

Music Video Director David Hogan

Music Video Director David HoganSong Writing

David talks about videos he made for Prince, Alabama, Big & Rich, Sheryl Crow, DMB, Melissa Etheridge and Sisters of Mercy.

Mac Powell of Third Day

Mac Powell of Third DaySongwriter Interviews

The Third Day frontman talks about some of the classic songs he wrote with the band, and what changed for his solo country album.

Dan Reed

Dan ReedSongwriter Interviews

Dan cracked the Top 40 with "Ritual," then went to India and spent 2 hours with the Dalai Lama.

Song Cities

Song CitiesMusic Quiz

Nirvana, Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen are among those who wrote songs with cities that show up in this quiz.

90210 to Buffy to Glee: How Songs Transformed TV

90210 to Buffy to Glee: How Songs Transformed TVSong Writing

Shows like Dawson's Creek, Grey's Anatomy and Buffy the Vampire Slayer changed the way songs were heard on TV, and produced some hits in the process.