The song and album title is a reference to the experience of being towed along in a small boat by a harpooned whale (see Nantucket Sleighride.) The person to whom the song is dedicated, Owen Coffin, was a young seaman on the Nantucket whaleship Essex, which was rammed and sunk by a sperm whale in 1820. In the aftermath of the wreck, Coffin was shot and eaten by his shipmates. The Essex's story was recorded by its First Mate, Owen Chase, one of eight survivors, in his 1821 Narrative of the Most Extraordinary and Distressing Shipwreck of the Whale-Ship Essex.
"Nantucket Sleighride" was used as the theme to the long-running British political television show Weekend World. Mountain is an American rock band whose main fame was in the 1970s. The band was inspired by Cream and enjoyed the involvement of unofficial Cream bassist and producer Felix Pappalardi.
Mountain played at the Woodstock festival in 1969 and their first album, Climbing!, was released the following year. The album included the track "Mississippi Queen" which reached No.21 on the Billboard charts. The band split after the live album, Mountain Live (The Road Goes Ever On) (1972), and two of the members went on to form West, Bruce (from Cream) and Laing which achieved success in their own right. After reforming in 1974, the band released a live album and Avalanche, but that was to be the last of their studio output until 1996's Man's World. Leslie West, and Corky Laing continue to "rock on" as Mountain to this day. Tracks o1. Don't Look Around - 3:47 02. Taunta (Sammy's Tune) - 1:00 03. Nantucket Sleighride (To Owen Coffin) - 5:55 04. You Can't Get Away! - 3:28 05. Tired Angels (To J.M.H.) - 4:42 06. The Animal Trainer And The Toad - 3:29 07. My Lady - 4:35 08. Travelin' In The Dark (To E.M.P.) - 4:26 09. The Great Train Robbery - 5:50 Listen