Taxi

Album: Heads And Tales (1972)
Charted: 24
  • It was raining hard in 'Frisco
    I needed one more fare to make my night
    A lady up ahead waved to flag me down
    She got in at the light

    Oh, where you going to, my lady blue
    It's a shame you ruined your gown in the rain
    She just looked out the window, she said
    "Sixteen Parkside Lane"

    Something about her was familiar
    I could swear I'd seen her face before
    But she said, "I'm sure you're mistaken"
    And she didn't say anything more

    It took a while, but she looked in the mirror
    And she glanced at the license for my name
    A smile seemed to come to her slowly
    It was a sad smile, just the same

    And she said, "How are you Harry?"
    I said, "How are you Sue?
    Through the too many miles
    And the too little smiles
    I still remember you"

    It was somewhere in a fairy tale
    I used to take her home in my car
    We learned about love in the back of the Dodge
    The lesson hadn't gone too far

    You see, she was gonna be an actress
    And I was gonna learn to fly
    She took off to find the footlights
    And I took off to find the sky

    Whoa, I've got something inside me
    To drive a princess blind
    There's a wild man, wizard
    He's hiding in me, illuminating my mind

    Oh, I've got something inside me
    Not what my life's about
    'Cause I've been letting my outside tide me
    Over 'till my time, runs out

    Baby's so high that she's skying
    Yes she's flying, afraid to fall
    I'll tell you why baby's crying
    'Cause she's dying, aren't we all

    There was not much more for us to talk about
    Whatever we had once was gone
    So I turned my cab into the driveway
    Past the gate and the fine trimmed lawns

    And she said we must get together
    But I knew it'd never be arranged
    And she handed me twenty dollars
    For a two fifty fare, she said
    "Harry, keep the change"

    Well, another man might have been angry
    And another man might have been hurt
    But another man never would have let her go
    I stashed the bill in my shirt

    And she walked away in silence
    It's strange, how you never know
    But we'd both gotten what we'd asked for
    Such a long, long time ago

    You see, she was gonna be an actress
    And I was gonna learn to fly
    She took off to find the footlights
    I took off for the sky

    And here, she's acting happy
    Inside her handsome home
    And me, I'm flying in my taxi
    Taking tips, and getting stoned
    I go flying so high, when I'm stoned Writer/s: HARRY F. CHAPIN
    Publisher: Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 16

  • Roger Rose from Spring, TexasReminds me of my taxi driving days.....Yellow Cab .Washington DC 1976 "And me, I'm flying in my taxi
    Taking tips, and getting stoned
    I go flying so high, when I'm stoned" Remember this was 1976
  • Jeff from Oklahoma City, OkAs Doug commented on, as a graduate of the Air Force Academy, many cadets had the pleasure to hear Harry Chapin in concert in the 1970s and had an opportunity to enjoy his comments about his departure from the Academy in 1960 early during his freshman year, the toughest year, and the bogus counseling he received from the chaplain about how he'd never succeed in life if he left. Also as a graduate of the Air Force Academy, I was there as a cadet during one of those performances in the 1970s and remember the story that Harry shared so well, as Doug accurately conveyed! Harry was a great story teller, in both words and through his music.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyPer: http://www.oldiesmusic.com/news.htm
    Clare Alden MacIntyre-Ross, one-time girlfriend of Harry Chapin and reportedly the inspiration for his songs, "Taxi" and "Sequel," died of a stroke March 9th, 2016 in Falls Church, Virginia...
    The two were Summer camp counselors but split up and drifted apart in real life...
    May she R.I.P.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyHere's some obscure trivia:
    On May 31st 1907, the first taxi cabs went into service in New York City; thus also becoming the first taxis in the U.S.A.
    And exactly sixty-five years later on May 31st, 1972 Harry Chapin's "Taxi" was at #24 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart {See next post below}...
    It reached #5 on the Canadian RPM Singles chart.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn August 19th 1972, Harry Chapin performed "Taxi" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    Five months earlier on March 5th, 1972 it entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #100; and on May 28th, 1972 it peaked at #24 {for 2 weeks} and spent 16 weeks on the Top 100...
    Earlier on the same day of his ‘Bandstand’ appearance he appeared on the NBC-TV special 'The Midnight Special' and performed the song...
    Between 1972 and 1980 he had seven Top 100 records; his biggest hit was Cat's In the Cradle", it reached #1 {for 1 week} on December 15th, 1974...
    In 1980 "Sequel" peaked at #23 on the Top 100...
    R.I.P. Harry Forster Chapin {1942 - 1981}.
  • Scotty from Cheyenne, WyFunny how you can connect to some songs...my first true girlfriend was names Suzanne, and I called her Sue. We dated for a while through high school in New Orleans. We really liked each other, but had too many differences to make the relationship really bloom. I had always planned to be an Air Force pilot like my Dad, and while I had a nomination to the AFA, I couldn't qualify academically, so I went to LSU and earned a pilot training slot through AFROTC. Suzanne had an amazing voice, and I expected her to make it in show business some way, but she could never really break through. I washed out of pilot training and became a missile launch officer. No matter how many times I hear this song, the parallels always amaze me.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyHISTORY OF WOLD AM & FM: WOLD - AM 1330 Khz went on the air with 1000 watts daytime only on April 25, 1962 started By Seward Broadcasting Co. The AM station increased output power to 5000 watts day and 500 watts pre-sunrise in 1981. Specialty programing includes country and religious formats. It was acquired by present owner Emerald Sound,Inc in September 1965. WOLD - FM signed on March 14 1968 and now operates on 102.5 Mhz with 6000 watts. Format 24 hours a day is adult contemporary, and oldies {Info source: http://www.netva.com/wold/HISTORY.HTM}
  • Doug from Dixfield, MeSaw Harry many times in concert. As a grad of the Air Force Academy, he had special meanings to a couple of his songs. He performed there several times. At one of his concerts he related to the audience that as he was out processing from the Academy that he had to talk to the chaplain. The chaplain, in an effort to have Harry reconsider said that if he wasn't a success at the Academy that he wouldn't be a success at anything. Harry said, "I gave away $4 million to charity last year and still had to pay taxes on the other $7 million I kept. Mow, I'm not sure what a major in the Air Force makes but I don't believe it is quite that high yet." He also commented about what a good decision it was to leave the Academy since he was in the class of '64 - they lost a lot of pilots in Vietnam.

    Another song about his life at "the Zoo" (AF Academy) is "Changes" on the Short Stories album.
  • Keith from San Francisco, CaBeing a native San Franciscan (I was 12 in the summer of 1967, Haight-Ashbury and all that), I knew the song wasn't originally about San Francisco. First we don't have Brownstones, and we don't call it "Frisco". Having said that, I love this song because it is a great and evocative song. You KNOW in the first couple bars what song it is, it was like no other songs at the time. I think of Harry Chapin and Don McLean as two of the greatest songwriters of our time, but I think of Harry Chapin as more of a Song PAINTER for his ability to create
    an image in your mind with his work. RIP Harry
  • M from Df, NyHarry changed the city and the name to sue, the song was about a woman named "cille" lucille. I remember when this really happened because my mother was on the way to see my sister and i but she got lost on the cab ride. I never did see her for awhile after that. The 5 story brownstory was on main street in a small italian town outside of n.y. Harry was my Mom's only love before she had married my dad and that didn't work out. didn't know alot about her but she loved harry very much and I never met him but always admired him for who he was and what he stood for. Rest in peace Harry.
  • Terri from Baltimore, MdAlthough I like some of his other songs, Taxi and Sequel will always be my favorites.
  • James from Houston, TxI saw Harry perform this song at a Concert at West Point. He related that he had at one time gone to the Air Force Academy (dropped out after one year), which explains the lyrics "I was going to learn to fly"
  • Lester from New York City, NySaw Harry Chapin many times. His songs 'Sniper' & Bummer' were truly killer. He almost completely stopped doing them about a year before he died because his voice couldn't handle the songs anymore. mitch, I was engaged to a girl in Long Beach, LI in '70-'71
  • Alex from New York, NyThis was Chapin's first single. Harry had his taxi drivers license in New York City and worked as a driver for 6 months in Long Beach, New York. When he wrote this song, he changed the setting to San Francisco to make it more interesting.
  • Mitch from New York, NyHarry Chapin was a cab driver in Long Beach, NY but when he wrote Taxi, he changed it to San Fransico to make it more interesting.
  • Charles from Charlotte, NcSan Franciscans disdain having their city called "Frisco". Wonder if Chapin knew this when he wrote the song?
    Chapin died in a car crash in 1981 shortly after his last single "Sequel" was released.
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