This was written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King in 1966. It has a different feel from many of their other hits, maybe because their marriage was heading for the rocks.
The first recording was by Goldie in 1966. I am not sure whether she was still part of Goldie and the Gingerbreads by then or if they had split up. It was released in April or May, but producer Andrew Loog Oldham had altered some of the lyrics, and Goffin and King were displeased. It was withdrawn after a week.
Dusty Springfield released it on July 1, 1966. It got to No 10 in Britain but was not released as a single in the States.
To my ear the accompaniment is too loud for the voice. I think this live recording from the BBC in 1966 (I don’t know if it was on radio or TV), while a bit rough round the edges, has a better balance.
The Byrds recorded Goin’ Back as a track for their 1968 album The Notorious Byrd Brothers. Guitarist David Crosby opposed its inclusion and ultimately left the group. It was released as a single on October 20, 1967, reaching No 89 in America. It failed to chart in Britain.
Carole King released her own version on her 1970 album Writer.
She re-recorded it for her 1980 album, Pearls: Songs of Goffin and King.
I can’t say I am keen about either of them, but often I don’t think writers make the best versions of their own songs.
Nils Lofgren recorded it for his debut album Nils Lofgren in 1975. It’s different and I like it a lot.