Blues Image lead singer Mike Pinera wrote this with their keyboard player Skip Konte. Mike's wife Valerie told us: "Ride Captain is a story from his imagination. I know when he was in the studio recording that album, they needed another song and he wrote it on the spot. He came up with 73 from the keyboard having 73 keys. A lot of people say it relates to a few different stories."
A plausible, but false interpretation of the song is that it is about Sir Francis Drake's voyage on the west coast of America. Drake did sail once with 73 sailors, and he sailed in the vicinity of San Francisco. Drake's ship was considered "mysterious" because of its opulence, funded by seizures from Spanish ships.
Suggestion credit: Kelly - Warner Robins, GA
This was the only hit for Blues Image, and it came on their second album. The group dissolved soon after, with Pinera joining Iron Butterfly and Skip Konte going to Three Dog Night.