> Sandy Denny > Songs > By the Time It Gets Dark

By the Time It Gets Dark

[Sandy Denny]

This song was never released on any of Sandy’s official albums, but we still have four different recordings available:

  1. Sandy recorded this as a demo at home in Byfield, Northamptonshire in 1974, accompanying herself with 12-string guitar. This demo was eventually released on the Who Knows Where the Time Goes box set.
  2. Another home demo recorded in March 1976 can be found on the bonus CD of the 5CD Fledg’ling Sandy Denny anthology A Boxful of Treasures. Here she sings “you’ll be laughing” in the third verse.
  3. Sandy also recorded this song with her band during the Rendevous session but left it off the album. One take of this song with John “Rabbit” Bundrick, keyboards; Jerry Donahue, guitar; Pat Donaldson, bass; Trevor Lucas, guitar; Dave Mattacks, drums; was released in 2004 on A Boxful of Treasures.
  4. A last take recorded in June 1976 with Jerry Donahue, guitar; Pat Donaldson, bass; and probably Timi Donald, drums; was included in the bonus CD of A Boxful of Treasures.

Cover Versions

  1. Julie Covington on her album Julie Covington (1978)
    (produced by Joe Boyd; backing musicians included Richard Thompson, John Cale, Ray Cooper, Trevor Lucas and Steve Winwood)
  2. Julie Covington and the Albion Band on the album The Guv’nor Vol. 3 (1995).
    Julie Covington promoted her self-titled album (see above) in 1978 on a tour with the Albion Band, where this track was recorded
  3. Mary Black sings the title track of her album By the Time It Gets Dark (1987)
  4. Tina Adair on her album Just You Wait and See (1987)
  5. Yo La Tengo on their EP Little Honda (1997)
  6. Iain Matthews with No Grey Faith on their album Secrets All Told (2000)
  7. More Maids on their album Mary Is Busy... Too Busy to Marry (2000)
  8. Susan Hedges on her album Crimson Love on Velvet Black (2001)
  9. Mary Lou Lord on her album Live City Sounds (2001)
  10. Marsden Blant & Squire on their album Trio (2003)
  11. Miranda Sykes on her album Miranda Sykes Band (2005)
  12. Ida on her 2 CD album Rarities—Who Were You Then (2008)


Sorry, I can't show the lyrics here as I don't have the copyright owners' permission to publish them. But please feel free and ask me to send you the song's lyrics.