Nilsson had a fascination with numbers that extended to his music (also see "One
"). "When I started writing '1941,'" he explained to Stereo Review
in 1973, "I was interested in writing a song about a number. So I thought I'd write a song about a year. First, I tried 1944. No. Then I tried 1941. Yes, that's it! Originally it was going to be a war song."