Belfast Telegraph

Sweet Caroline's secret out

By Chris Thornton

The secret behind one of the favourite songs sung by Northern Ireland fans has been revealed after almost 40 years.

Singer Neil Diamond said that 'Sweet Caroline' - regularly sung at Windsor Park to celebrate local victories - was inspired by the only daughter of assassinated President John F Kennedy.

Diamond only decided to reveal the decades-old secret because he recently sang the song - "probably the biggest, most important song of my career" - to Caroline Kennedy at her 50th birthday party.

"I've never discussed it with anybody before - intentionally," he said in an interview. "I thought maybe I would tell it to Caroline when I met her someday. I'm happy to have gotten it off my chest and to have expressed it to Caroline," he added. "I thought she might be embarrassed, but she seemed to be struck by it and really, really happy."

The singer was a "young, broke songwriter" when he was struck by how cute Caroline Kennedy looked in a magazine photo.

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