Song Lyric Sunday (3/4/18) – Numbers

Helen’s prompt for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday is around numbers. There were a few that popped into my head, and I decided to settle on one song that uses numbers in the title, the lyrics, and is about numbers. Specifically time. When this song was released in 1970, many people were uncertain of its meaning. There was a lot of suggestions that alluded to drug use. It was, however, so much simpler than that. I know a lot of us have been in this state before, but not for the same reason.

From Wikipedia:

According to composer Robert Lamm, the song is about trying to write a song in the middle of the night. The song’s title is the time at which the song is set: 25 or 26 minutes before 4 AM.[15][16] Because of the unique phrasing of the song’s title, “25 or 6 to 4” has been incorrectly speculated to be a veiled reference to drug quantities, or a mystical allusion.[17] The 1986 music video for the song references the correct meaning at its beginning. The song was banned in Singapore in 1970 and again in 1986 because of its “alleged allusions to drugs.”[18] In 1993, the ban on this song was lifted, along with long-time bans on songs by other artists such as the Beatles, Bob Dylan and Creedence Clearwater Revival.[19]


I give you the song 25 or 6 to 4 by the band Chicago.

Waiting for the break of day
Searching for something to say
Dancing lights against the sky
Giving up I close my eyes
Sitting cross-legged on the floor
25 or 6 to 4

Staring blindly into space
Getting up to splash my face
Wanting just to stay awake
Wondering how much I can take
Should have tried to do some more
25 or 6 to 4

Feeling like I ought to sleep
Spinning room is sinking deep
Searching for something to say
Waiting for the break of day
25 or 6 to 4
25 or 6 to 4

Songwriters: Robert Lamm


  1. I hadn’t heard this one before. I can see how the lyrics made it seem like it was about drugs, but I also understand being awake in the middle of the night, and this seems just about right. Great pick! Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

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