What does Rikki Don't Lose That Number mean?

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Steely Dan: Rikki Don't Lose That Number Meaning

Song Released: 1974

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Rikki Don't Lose That Number Lyrics

We hear you're leaving, that's OK
I thought our little wild time had just begun
I guess you kind of scared yourself, you turn and run
But if you have a change of heart
Rikki don't lose that number
You don't wanna call nobody else
Send it...


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    Jul 17th, 2015 7:59pm report

    Rikki Ducornet(female) was a NY writer and artist who Donald Fagen met while they were both students at Barth college in NY. They met at a college party(she was married at the time) and Rikki was worried that she was becoming attracted to Donald and decided to leave before things went too far, but not before Donald gave her his phone #.This explains most but not all the lyrics.


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    May 12th, 2012 5:38pm report

    This song is about a guy that just had his first gay experience and it scared him. Now he has to figure out if he's gay and who he can talk to about it.


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    Nov 29th, 11:18pm report

    I heard it was about while in college, he was balling a professor's wife, her name was Rikkie


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    Aug 28th, 8:37pm report

    I am a gay man who was in high school when the song came out in the 70's and I absolutely thought the lyrics were about a gay man coming to terms with himself. Whether that was the meaning or the inspiration or not, it spoke to me in a way that no other pop song of that era did, so hats off to Steely Dan for helping many young gay men in an era of oppression whether they intended to or knew they were doing so or not


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    Aug 18th, 2019 8:38am report

    Long ago, men i knew were fans of Steely Dan. I never really cared for soft rock/jazz. Decades later learning they were so gay long ago. I was heavy metal/pop/grunge/punk. Still do not understand the Dan. Like all the gays did. Long ago. Are they still alive? I doubt it. If there was anything greater than platinum classic, I would award it to Steely Dan.


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    Nov 4th, 2018 11:23pm report

    It’s definitely about Rick Derringer


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    Sep 3rd, 2017 9:45pm report

    I remember something about them writing a song and before protecting it with a copywrite, the idea was used by someone else, thus the verse "send it off in a letter to yourself"...dont open it and the postmark date would be a way to prove your case. "You might use if you get better, when you get home" rip co-founder, we will miss you


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    Sep 3rd, 2017 9:00pm report

    Rikki as a smoke misdirect for Ricky. "You're not my kind" for Rikki?


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    Jun 6th, 2017 6:29am report

    I also thought it could mean smoking cannabis.


    Chris Andoe
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    Jun 30th, 2016 6:09am report

    "I have a friend in town. He knows your name."

    This would be relevant in the secret society of gays at the time.


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    Sep 14th, 2014 9:24pm report

    My name is Ricki, I am a girl, well I was a younger girl, I 1974 and thought it was my song, even though I didn't know Steely Dan, but it was supposed to be about a friend of theirs, a girl from Bard college..


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    Jun 8th, 2014 6:13pm report

    I am so glad that someone else had my feelings for this song, having grown up on Long Island in the seventies and not being sure of my own sexuality, this errie melody and mysterious message only made my imagine that they must be talking about some first time experience that involved fear and longing, desire and trepidation, anyway it resonated through me at the time for that and still does. Great song whatever its meaning.


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    Jul 23rd, 2013 7:17pm report

    Correct spelling of the name is Rikki and it is the female verision of the name so I believe you are mistaken when you make the assumption that it is about a same sex relationship due to the name. And for the record I have a daughter in law named Rikki so it is not as unheard of as many people may think, it is just more a regional name.


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    May 20th, 2012 5:27pm report

    I read somewhere that this was about Rick Derringer who played on many middle period Dan albums.


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    Apr 5th, 2011 4:39am report

    Supposedly about a girl Becker and Fagen knew in college, but could also be about them asking Rick Derringer to be a permanent member of the Dan, which he passed on.

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