In an interview published in the November 20, 1971 issue of the British music paper Sounds
, Felix Pappalardi said of this track "...when I'm out in Nantucket sometimes and the fog rolls in I think to myself that those dudes leaving their wives and families for three years to go around the Cape and not seeing anybody for that time, it's a long and frightening break and all those references are there."
He was referring specifically to the Nantucket whaling ships; for about forty years, from 1800, the island of Nantucket was the whaling capital of the world. The Brooklyn-born Pappalardi wrote most of the lyrics for this song, which was co-written with Gail Collins, his girlfriend, wife and killer - in that order! (She shot Felix in 1983, killing him at age 41.)
They started writing it in 1964, wrote most of it in 1965, and it was recorded in 1967. "Travellin' In The Dark" is not quite as well known as Nantucket Sleighride," a song that was also inspired by the Nantucket whaling industry, and which might be described as a true-life horror story.
Alexander Baron - London, England