What does 25 or 6 to 4 mean?

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Chicago: 25 or 6 to 4 Meaning


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Song Released: 1970

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25 or 6 to 4 Lyrics

Waiting for the break of day
Searching for something to say
Flashing 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...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Sep 13th 2009 report

    I read an interview with Robert Lamm in which he explained that he was indeed referring to what time it was while he was attempting to write this song. Also, I believe back in 1970 when the song was written, there weren't digital clocks yet, so he was staring at an analog clock that was either 25 or 26 minutes until 4 a.m.--which, to correct the reference above--would be 3:35 or 3:34 a.m.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Jun 19th 2018 report

    It's about a guy trying to write a song on LSD(also known at the time as LSD 25). Quaaludes were stamped with the number 624. He's trying to decide whether to do some more acid and get higher, or take a Quaalude to come down.

    Window pane vs. disco biscuits. How 70's.

  3. anonymous
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    Jan 14th report

    I really believe Robert was just trying to finish off another song. I mean, do you really think he would have gotten up to splash his face if he was in the midst of doing drugs? The man was just trying to stay awake. These guys were super busy and may have played a gig the night before.

  4. anonymous
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    Dec 19th 2019 report

    24 hours in a day, 25 to go the extra mile, if you can carry your work to the next day; no rest for the wicked in their chase for infinity.
    6AM-4PM is 10 hours, 2 more than your usual 8. Listen to the rhythm, the guitar solo is reminiscent of Hendrix’s “All Along the Watchtower” where princes kept their view.
    I found this song when I was 24, chasing wine with alchemy, overworking for a life I’ll never live long enough to reach. It’s a warning, it’s encouragement, it’s recognition.

  5. anonymous
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    Mar 26th 2019 report

    I always thought it was about cocaine, hence Robert says, "wanting just to stay awake, wondering how much I can take, should I try to do some more."

  6. anonymous
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    Oct 24th 2017 report

    All great songs have a way of reaching into our emotions. Those rare songs touch that feel good nerve.folks from all walks of life can relate almost personally to lyrics and music. It has a profound effect to each. Time, time is relative (Einstein) the mind is
    A beautiful thing, LSD IS relative to senses
    Time and music.(Timothy Leary was on to something magical).wether it's 25 minutes or 25 mic's or 4,6 or 8 way tabs.just let it move you and ease you to a state of Wonder.
    Music does calm the savage beast.

  7. anonymous
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    Oct 17th 2017 report

    I don't understand where drugs come into this they are trying to finish a cut of a song when one looks up to ask what time it is the other one replies looking at a clock it is 25 minutes or 26 minutes to 4 a.m. 25 or 62 two 4 a.m. read the first album the song was produced on

  8. anonymous
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    May 28th 2017 report

    I'm sorry. That's 25 or 26 parts water to 4 parts water. I'm ready for bed, I guess.

  9. anonymous
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    May 27th 2017 report

    There is no doubt that this song is about doing heroin. The 25 or 6 to 4 refers to the water/heroin typical cooked up and shot into a vein: 25 or 26 parts water to 6 parts heroin. Just read the rest of the lyrics.

  10. anonymous
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    Feb 18th 2017 report

    I think the song is about a man who's having trouble trying to write a song 25 or 26 minutes before 4 AM. While trying to come up with the lyrics, he tries doing some drugs in order to keep he focused!

  11. grey_lightning
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    Dec 8th 2015 report

    While Robert Lamm has stated that it was about writing a song when he wrote it in 1970. The TV show dragnet used the term to refer to ACID in 2 episodes in 1969. Since having tried acid a couple times in my youth, I can verify that the lyrics very accurately describe what it is like to try to make sense of the experience while tripping. No question in my mind it about a trip. I think Lamm told the other story to direct attention away from the original meaning after he left the drug culture himself. I'll look for the dragnet episodes, and post when I find them. I know that when I was a kid 25or6to4 or just 25 where common names for acid within the culture, which I admit to having been a part of at the time.

  12. anonymous
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    Dec 8th 2015 report

    I know Robert Lamm claims it was about writing a song and was written in 1970. why then did the TV show Dragnet use it as a name for Acid in a 1968 episode? Maybe Jack Webb should have been asked. I think Lamm's explanation was a cover after he no longer was involved with drugs. But I cannot think of any better description ever written about what it is like to be tripping and trying to understand the trip. Even if it was not intended to refer to acid when written, it certainly became a name for it. when I was growing up that's the name everyone used for acid.

  13. anonymous
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    Sep 6th 2014 report

    Hearing from eternity + ?

  14. anonymous
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    Aug 7th 2013 report

    It is most likely the LSD (25) a trip started in the evening 6 (pm) would last till
    around 4 (am). Should I take some more, 25 or 6 to 4.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  15. anonymous
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    Nov 28th 2009 report

    Every one here is slow the songs a drug song it's about cocaine.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  16. anonymous
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    Aug 29th 2009 report

    I fell that this is a song about whether he should take an other hit of LSD (25) or go to work (6 to 4) Dr.Ugg

  17. dalto7
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    Dec 19th 2008 report

    I think he is debating over if he should go back to bed or start his day. And his eyes arn't fully awake so he dosen't know if it is 3:35 or 3:56. But the the first one might be right too.

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