What does 5:15 mean?

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The Who: 5:15 Meaning


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Song Released: 1973

5:15 Lyrics

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  1. anonymous
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    Dec 1st 2017 report

    When the Beatles played at shows the girls would literally pee themselves, and the place would reek so management would get the ushers to spray cologne on the seats..that's what Pete Townshend said in an interview about 5:15

  2. anonymous
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    Aug 7th 2017 report

    My theory is that Quad ..is based on the true story of a 60's mod who threw himself of Beachy head...
    When 'Jimmy' realizes his mod mates are weekend part time rebels,not social revolutionaries he thought they were ...happy to be down at heel factory fodder Monday to Friday ...he sees no point in accepting his own future life in that way..On the 5.15 he sees all the people he felt had damaged his life..ex bosses, girls who seduced him for thrills, not love .. indifferent uncaring petty authority that effects his life..without prospering him ..he sees them all of them in their true light on the 5.15...and realizes how shallow they are and how shallow Human nature is ...when he gets to beachy head he changes his mind about killing himself because he thinks why should I die for such shallow vile people he perceives have damaged him. In short don't let the bastards grind you down .

  3. anonymous
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    Dec 2nd 2015 report

    @ Astorian,
    "The ushers are sniffing, eu de cologning"
    not conductors on the train, ushers in a theatre.
    Townsend himself commented that this passage refers to the poor chaps who had to spray certain seats after a rock show. Seems the excitement of seeing their heroes in the flesh caused some teenage girls to lose bladder control.

  4. astorian
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    Oct 23rd 2012 report

    This song was originally a track on the Who's "Quadrophenia" concept album, and it's lyrics make more sense within the context of that album.

    The album tells the story of Jimmy, a teenager who has long embraced the fashions and music of the Sixties "Mod" movement. But lately, all the things that used to make him happy have become stale or have let him down. In the songs on the album before "5:15," Jimmy has found that his musical idols, the Who, aren't really so wonderful. He's also found out in "Ive Had Enough" that his girlfriend is cheating on him. He's lost his job and has had a falling out with his parents.

    Now that he's all alone, he decides to take the 5:15 train to the beach town of Brighton, a place where he's had a lot of fun in the past. During this train ride, he's taking drugs and looking around at everyone. The lyrics to "5:15" reflect BOTH the things he really sees around him, AND his memories of being a fashionable young Mod.

    On the train, he sees pretty, heavily-perfumed teenage girls, and observes that the adult conductors are sniffing the perfume and checking out the girls, while sitting quietly and trying not to be noticed.

    As the drugs kick in, he starts to reflect on his life. Like his contemporaries, he was born during or just after World War 2. He remembers being bored by his ordinary middle class life and popping pills.

    He remembers the thrill he got from dressing up in Mod clothes for the first time. Even though he thought of himself as a virile, macho stud, he dressed in frilly, sparkly clothes and high heels, as all Mod males did.

    Jimmy starts to realize that he doesn't really fit in anywhere... it bothers him deeply, but he tries to pretend it doesn't- that's why he asks "Why should I care?"

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