*9.12-IN TIME (Jefferson Airplane)

Jefferson Airplane


Long time since I climbed down this mountain before.
Things I've seen here make me want to go running home.

Lean close, put your lips next to my face.
Look further--on past the surface.

        Orange, blue, red and green
        Are the colors of what I feel
        And my mind y'know it starts to reel
        In time.

To know your flesh laying by my skin.
And I wonder whenever I'm in.

        Warm, soft, nice and now
        Are the word things of what I know
        And my body y'know it's oh so
        In time.


I see you at the same place that I play.
Ah darling, tell me what can I say?

        Dance, sing, sleep and dream
        Is the music of what I hear
        Among the many things whenever you're near
        In time.


                Come with me my friend.
                Come on now and take my hand.
                You can be my friend.
                Soon be in another country.


Crown of CreationCrown of Creation was the third album that the Jefferson Airplane released with singer Grace Slick, and aesthetically it is located somewhere between the folk rock psychedelia of Surrealistic Pillow and the psychedelic jazz experimentation of After Bathing at Baxter's. As a more commercial release, it sold better than Baxter’s but not as well as the popular Pillow, which after all had contained the only two singles the Airplane would ever have in the Top Ten. As it was 1968, Crown of Creation began to show that the Airplane were becoming a politically involved group, actually among the most politically involved of the period, a factor of their makeup that would obscure the Airplane’s psychedelic aesthetic by the release of Volunteers of Amerika, an album which will not be considered in this collection of Psychedelic Masterworks. A bit of this political awareness creeps into some of the Crown of Creation songs that have been included for consideration, but for the most part psychedelic hedonism (perfectly acceptable for my purposes) encases political sentiments (“Break china laughing!” from If You Feel) which by Volunteers would be expressed in a more raw manner for the encouragement of street-fighting revolutionaries (“Up against the wall, motherfucker!” from We Can Be Together).

In Time is a quiet composition that shows how much the Airplane had evolved as artists since Surrealistic Pillow, as it seems to be a natural growth from such songs as Today and Coming Back to Me from the earlier album. Jorma Kaukonen’s lead electric guitar and Jack Casady’s electric bass add depth to the acoustic guitar, and the lyrics themselves have a more explicit sexual (adult) relation to the “you” and a little less (adolescent) romanticism. It appears that the poet has found an alternate reality (“another country”, which to my ears sounds like the interracial bisexual world of James Baldwin’s novel by the same name released in 1962) that is as potent in altering perception as LSD. In this case “in time” doesn’t mean that the poet is contained in the minutes and hours, but rather that he shares the same rhythm as his sexual partner.