Never Been Any Reason

Album: Flat As A Pancake (1975)
Charted: 68


  • This was written by Mike Somerville, who was the band's lead guitarist from 1973-1980, and again from 1994-2003. The song is about a guy who returns home - possibly from a tour - and has it out with his woman.
  • The band formed in southern Illinois in 1969 but went through a number of member changes before arriving at their core lineup in 1973. They honed their craft playing colleges and clubs in the midwest, which is where they developed "Never Been Any Reason." According to lead singer John Schlitt, they would sometimes introduce it as a song by Three Dog Night because club owners didn't want them playing original songs.
  • This song, along with the rest of Head East's debut album, was recorded at Golden Voice Recording, a tiny studio in Mike Somerville's hometown of South Pekin, Illinois. Instead of making a demo and pitching it to record companies, they just made the Flat As A Pancake album and released it independently on their own Pyramid Records label in 1974. They produced it themselves, keeping it simple and faithful to the arrangements they honed from playing the songs on the road.

    When they were done recording, they had 2,000 vinyl copies pressed and sent one to every radio station and promoter in the area they thought might be interested. They ploy worked; "Never Been Any Reason" earned airplay on KSHE in St. Louis and Y-102 in Kansas City, leading to a deal with A&M Records, who signed the band and re-released the album in June 1975. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Stevie Lee - WSFR, Louisville, KY
  • Head East charted higher with their next single, "Love Me Tonight," which made #54 US, but "Never Been Any Reason" is by far their most popular song, showing incredible endurance. Classic rock radio stations often pepper it into their playlists, as it's one of the few songs that listeners seem to love even if they've never heard it before. The band remained active in some form for decades, and the song was always their showstopper.
  • This was used in the 1993 movie Dazed and Confused, which takes place in 1976. Other films to use the song include J-Men Forever (1979), Sahara (2005) and The Education of Charlie Banks (2007).

Comments: 16

  • Paul Ray from Columbus, OhioI noticed the verse “woman is a sweet love, better than a white line” and suspected it might be a line of cocaine. I could be wrong yet lyrics interpretation are up to each individual.
  • Robert from LexingtonIt's more than likely about meth. Back in those days we snorted it.
  • Zach from Columbus, OhioSteve from c.t.

    Its true that glass is a term for methamphetamine but I'm pretty sure the 'did you break any glass' line is referring to cutting up lines of cocaine on a mirror (glass). I could be wrong, dont know much about the song but as a former user, it seems to make sense that if the song is focusing on cocaine, the phrase I would argue, eludes to the act of cutting up lines rather than mentioning meth, which if my older friends are correct was not even crystal meth back then but more of a powder.
  • Vicister from MissouriHead East made this song back in the era of arena rock. Powerful music was sweeping the nation and "Never been any Reason" certainly fit as a Arena Rock Anthem. The lyrics describe a Cociane high. White lines were the drug of choice at the time nation wide, it was a snow- fest that year. "Save my life, I'm going down for the last time" describes a highly pure form of Cociane feeling with the spirling effect winding downward through the nerve system. It's not the late 70's anymore and that level of drug just isn't around anymore.
  • William from Reno, NvThe first time I heard this song was in a bar at closing time. I've seen bands cover this one all over the place as closing song.
    Even Hawaii. K/H D
  • Steve O.t. from Ct.Don. Did you break any glass? Refers to Crystal Meth use.
  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenRob, lead vocalist John Schlitt was kicked out of Head East in 1980 for drug use and hit rock bottom soon after, attempting suicide before turning his life around, leaving the music industry for years and then re-emerging with Petra. The line "Save my life, I'm goin' down for the last time" certainly ended up applying to him. A few years after Petra's members retired, Schlitt appeared at a reunion concert for Head East.
  • John from Indianapolis, InOne of the best, most memorable songs from the 70s. Why do I always think of Free's All Right Now when I hear this song?
  • Linda from Inland Empire, CaLove this song -- I'm firmly middle aged and I still turn it up LOUD!
  • Howie from Bristol, Ct., CtI first heard this song back in high school. I loved it then and I love it now. I'm in my 50's and in a classic rock cover band. I,ve been tryin to get my band to cover this song but they're not all on board with it. What is wrong with them???? This is truely a classic rock song.
  • Josh from Champaign, IlThe album title refers to the geography surrounding their home region of Central Illinois (met at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, recorded first album at Pekin, IL) , FLAT as a pancake!
  • Don from B G, KyIn the song, I know "... better than a white line" refers to using cocaine. What does "did you break any glass" mean?
  • Rob from Augusta, GaI grew up in the same town as a couple of the band members. They were an awesome band! I find it most interesting that John Schlitt would be more "famous" by his membership in his next band after Head East. He replaced Greg X. Volz in the Christian Rock Band Petra.
  • Eb from Orlando Metro, FlI always thought there was a female vocalist on this song. But a little internet searching and I found this:
    Who is the female singer heard sharing the lead vocal on Never Been Any Reason?
    Answer: There are no female voices on Never Been Any Reason. The two lead voices that share lines back and forth during the song are drummer Steve Huston and lead vocalist John Schlitt. John's is the higher voice that is occasionally mistaken by fans to be a female voice.
    I think I sometimes mix this song up with "Don't Misunderstand Me" by the Rossington-Collins Band and I thought that Dale Kranz-Rossington was the singer on this too.
  • Tony P. from Columbus, TxBack in Highschool there was a regional cover band called The Emotions that came to town once a month. If you were cool or just thought you were, you went to see them. I will always remember that they would close with this song. Tony P. Columbus Tx.
  • Shawn from Buffalo, NyThis is a great song I love the keyboard solo.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Jeff TrottSongwriter Interviews

Sheryl Crow's longtime songwriting partner/guitarist Jeff Trott reveals the stories behind many of the singer's hits, and what its like to be a producer for Leighton Meester and Max Gomez.

Macabre Mother Goose: The Dark Side of Children's SongsSong Writing

"London Bridge," "Ring Around the Rosie" and "It's Raining, It's Pouring" are just a few examples of shockingly morbid children's songs.

Howard JonesSongwriter Interviews

Howard explains his positive songwriting method and how uplifting songs can carry a deeper message.

80s Video Director Jay DubinSong Writing

Billy Joel and Hall & Oates hated making videos, so they chose a director with similar contempt for the medium. That was Jay Dubin, and he has a lot to say on the subject.

Graham ParkerSongwriter Interviews

When Judd Apatow needed under-appreciated rockers for his Knocked Up sequel, he immediately thought of Parker, who just happened to be getting his band The Rumour back together.

80s Music Quiz 1Music Quiz

MTV, a popular TV theme song and Madonna all show up in this '80s music quiz.