Lake Shore Drive

Album: Aliotta-Haynes-Jeremiah (1970)
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  • Lyrics
  • Aliotta-Haynes-Jeremiah formed in the Old Town section of Chicago above the Earl of Old Town at North and Wells in 1970. There is a Lake Shore Drive in Wisconsin, but this song has nothing to do with it - the song is about a drive around Chicago. Skip Haynes of the group explained to Forgotten Hits: "The song is about a Friday night cruise from the clubs on State street (Beaver's to be exact) shooting the loop at Foster and returning to Beaver's just in time for the second show to begin. That is the gist of it. Drugs (not LSD) were involved." (Many listeners made a connection between the initials in the title and the hallucinogenic drug - like a certain Beatles song.)
  • According to Haynes, the line, "Rats on up to riches" refers to driving from the poorer sections on the Southside to the more affluent Northside of Chicago.
  • When the group formed, they were called Aliotta Haynes Music, and made up of Mitch Aliotta, Skip Haynes, and Mitch's brother Ted Aliotta. Ted was asked to leave the group at the end of 1970 and was replaced by John Jeremiah who had been a bandmate of Mitch in the Rotary Connection. Jeremiah died in 2011 at age 65. For the comprehensive story of this song and a history of the band, see the Forgotten hits interview with Skip Haynes.
  • This song appears in the 2017 movie Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. The original in 2014 used music from the '70s instead of more modern fare, with tremendous results: the soundtrack went to #1 in the US. Director James Gunn dug deeper into the decade for the sequel and found more forgotten favorites, including "The Chain" by Fleetwood Mac and "Mr. Blue Sky" by ELO.
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Comments: 30

  • Jeff from Libertyville, IlJune 2012, Last week I saw this song peformed live by Aliotta (I think) and a local pick up musician in Lake Forest, IL at Lovell's Restaurant (Astronaut Jim proprietor) and it was like tim stood still from 40 years ago. It was really great, and also sad that all that talent and history were right there in a great setting and less than 10 people were on hand to enjoy it.
  • Frank from Hickory Hills, IlA great song that reminds me of my band days performing with THE CORPORATION LTD, on Rush Street, in Chicago. I first met Mitch Aliotta back in 1966 at one of my band rehearsals. Our lead singer at the time, Ray Galto, played with Mitch in a band called the TWEENS prior to working in our band while stationed in Germany. Back in Chicago, Ray invited Mitch over to meet us and Mitch sat in with my band on a few tunes. I then sat in with Mitch's band, the MAYBE'S, at a gig in Cicero. Mitch had a great voice aside from being a talented musician. I think of the day I first met Mitch every time I hear LSD.
  • Paul Kulak from Los Angeles, CaHmmm, . . . wow. . . . I remember hearing this song in the 70's. The chorus was all that stuck then but just now I read the lyrics. I grew up in Edgewater a couple blocks from Hollywood and Sheridan. Saw Four Plus Ones's rise and the Edgewater Beach Hotel tumble down. Went to St. Ita K - 5th, Swift, and Senn High. Ever increasing crime moved in and we left for Lake Geneva, Wisconsin in summer 1977. Turned 18 and caught a plane to LA, . . . January 5th 1978, . . . still here. It was cold in Chicago. Still is I hear. I try to visit every year. I walk or ride a bike up Broadway, over on Bryn Mawr, Kenmore, Thorndale, Berwyn, Ardmore, Balmoral. You can still see graffiti from the late 60's and early 70's on the lakeside rocks between Foster beach and Hollywood. . . My thanks to the folks who hung in there during the dark years of the 80's, and 90's. . .
  • Ralph Suess from Paragould, ArFor John in Collison Ill, I lived in St.Louis from 1972 till 1979 the song got played on Kshe a lot, didn't get to see them,but can remember them playing at some kind of show in wentzville at Chuck Berrys golf course
  • John from Hoffman , IlI met John Jeremiah in a bar in Ashley Il. His brother was playing in a band there that night. About half way thru the night he got up on stage and performed Lake Shore Drive. The man still has it. He sounded just like the record. After he played he stopped by our table and talked to use for about 20 minutes. All around great guy. He metioned that Aliotta was living in Vegas and Haynes was in L.A.
  • Tami from Knoxville, TnI'm from the Chicago area originally and love this song!! Does anyone out there know where I could find the sheet music for it? I've been looking for years!!
  • John from Aurora, IlMaaybe most of the guys were from West Allis, Wisc, but Skip Haynes was from Franklin Park, IL. He graduated East Leyden High School in 1963. I hear he's living in Florida now. Ted Aliotta is still working with bar bands in the Chicago suburbs. Saw him Saturday night.
  • John from Berwyn, IlMayor King Shortshanks wants the Olympics in Chicago. All the venues will be up and down Lake SHore Drive. This song should be the official song for the 2016 Olympics! Let Shortshanks know!
  • John from Berwyn, IlThe concrete shadows raising up refers to the shadopws of the highrises
  • Jen from Chicago, IlThis song reminds me of a guy I dated that lived on the North Shore (Sheridan and Kenmore), of how giddy I was driving north on that road.
  • Terry from Elkhart , InChicago's Lake Shore Drive is the world's most splendid cityscape. Bar none. And the bee's nuts in now to have a president from this great city.
  • Pam from Pinellas Park, Fl, FlI saw an interview with Skip Haynes and he said Pretty Blue Lights are the Chicago Police Cars.

    He is also the main vocal on this song.

    I use this as a ringtone on my phone.
  • Kevin from Wilbraham , MaThe reference to the concrete shadows raising at 5 is that back in the early 70's when they finished resurfacing LSD, they had put the very first automatic version of the 'jersey barricade' in the middle of LSD in two different places, so that in the morning there would be six lanes heading south and two north, then at evening rush hour they would reverse the flow with six north and two south. BAD IDEA! The concrete barriers were only about 8" high, and when cars hit them, they would flip over which caused some major pile ups with a lot of people killed and injured. By 1973 they just left them in the "down" position forever, never to be raised again. The blue lights were the streetlamps on the Oak Street beach side which had a very nice aqua hue to them. God I loved it, what a time to be a Chicagoan.
  • Bill from Charleston,il, Afghanistanme and my best bud are debating the reference"pretty blue lights along the way to hel you right on by." I'm sayin ts a backhanded slap at the blue chicago pd car mars lights.Well; they used to be blue when everyone elses were red when I was a teen. My bud says it's about some blue mercury vapor lights on LSD. Having grown up in Aurora, I know of no blue vapor light to light the drive. I don't even think mercury vapor street lights come in blue. My son says it's lights out on navy pier, which you eould notice running south on lsd if theyt existed.Any chicagoan fans have the definitive answer? God bless all!!
    Billy
  • Bill from Fountain Hills, AzThere actually is a reference to the S-curve, although it is very subtle. The final line of the final chorus, the lyric is changed from "just slippin on by on LSD" to "just snakin on by on LSD" This could only be a reference to the S-curve.
  • Bill from Fountain Hills, AzI am a Native Chicagoan. Got out of college and joined the real world in 1975. My job took me to many locations in and around the loop. I would battle rush hour traffic on the Kennedy from the N'west Suburbs head east to the lake and then take the Drive south to the vicinity of U of C. When I hit LSD, I would blast this song on the car stereo, and just take in the sights. GREAT
  • Mike from Lake Forest, IlHey, I played in the same bar with these guys, in
    the mid-70's) and one of the guitar players was a guy called John Stocklin and he was a friend of mine...always liked their tunes and lyrics!!! We played at "the roadhouse" in Wheeling, Ill if anyone cares...
    Mike--"Omar"
  • Annie from Chicago, IlMURPH. No mention was made of the S-Curve as it's been straightened. But, I loved the piano in that song and it reminds me of the city and fine times I had there! Annie, Virginia
  • Annie from Chicago, IlMURPH. No mention was made of the S-Curve as it's been straightened. But, I loved the piano in that song and it reminds me of the city and fine times I had there! Annie, Virginia
  • Renee from Chicago, IlIn the 70's I went to the U of I downtown Chicago and lived in Rogers Park, a neighbourhood a few miles north of where LSD ends. I drove a Triumph Spitfire and remember great days driving home from school on LSD with the top down, the blue sky and the radio turned up playing this song! In fact, when Napster first appeared and people started downloading music, this song was one of my first choices. Every time I play it, brings back some great memories of growing up during the best years ever!!
  • Ben from Wheaton, IlDoug - the northern terminus of Lake Shore Drive in Chicago is at Sheridan Road and Hollywood Avenue, thus the Hollywood reference.
  • Doug from Los Angeles, CaDoes anyone know what the reference to Hollywood is about? Is there a neighborhood in Chicago called Hollywood? Or a street with that name?
  • Yvonne from Ava, IlJohn Jeremiah, the keyboardist, is from southern Illinois---Sparta. This is the first time I've heard that there were multiple pianos in the Lake Shore Drive recording. I don't know what they did on the recording, but every weekend, here in southern Illinois, he sounds exactly like he did on the recording....a genius. Go to www.xanga.com/songanddance for current photos of him with Southern Thunder and www.youtube.com/chirogirl67550 to hear Lake Shore Drive.
  • John from Collison, IlChicago their home town? Well not exactly. Most of the guys were from West Allis Wisconsin. Aliotta still had a supper club in the Milwaukee suburbs the last time I was up there. The reason the piano part is so amazing is that it's two pianos. In fact if you listen really closely, it sounds to me like there is an overdub of the twin pianos in the second half, making it a 4 piano pileup.
    None of these things detract from a totally magical hit. You had super hip 1970 Chicago with all it's sophisticated tastes and soul - but it took a band of rubes from West Allis with a bass guitar, 2 pianos and a violin to create the greatest anthem we will ever hear for Chicago. I wonder if they were ever made honorary citizens with the gold key and all that? I don't think this got any significant airplay anywhere but Chicago, but that alone got them a respectable showing on the Billboard charts. Who did "Lake Shore Drive?" is a great trivia question. What more could you ask of a song?
  • Matt from Downers Grove, IlYou don't have to have even heard of LSD to appreciate this song. It helps to know it, though. The piano is amazing, too.
  • Chris from Los Angeles, Ca<>
    EXACTLY!!! I remember living in Chicago in my early to late 20s, and growing into adulthood there. This song completely captures what it's like to be young and free in the big city! Countless good memories of driving up and down LSD!! First time I've heard this song in awhile. Brought a tear to my eye, remembering all those wodnerful times with my friends, and we're all still in touch after all these years!
    My favorite two lines from the song:
    "Running south on Lake Shore Drive heading into town.
    And just snaking on by on LSD, Friday night trouble bound."
  • Duane from Wheatfield, InMy brother and I spent hours trying to figure out who sang this. We consider ourselves pretty well versed in music but just couldn't figure out this one. A great song, especially if you know the LSD.
  • Murph from Peoria, IlIt's accurate too. After years of living in the City, I can visualize exactly where they are talking about as the song progresses.

    Oddly enough though they make no mention of the sharp S-Curve where people wreck 28 times a day.
  • Jim from Rolla, MoSpectacular piano and electric violin. I can't believe A-H-J didn't have more hits like this.
  • Steve from Fenton, MoThis is absolutely a great song and I love the piano playing on it.
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