2.33-OUT OF MY MIND (Buffalo Springfield)

Buffalo Springfield



Out of my mind
And I just can't take it anymore
Left behind
By my self and what I'm living for.
All I hear are screams
From outside the limousines
That are taking me

Out of my mind.
Through the keyhole in an open door
Happy to find
That I don't know what I'm smiling for.
Tired of hanging on
If you miss me, I've just gone
Cause they're taking me
Out of my mind.


[Repeat First Verse]

Out of my mind.

I can't help but think that the Summer 1966 novelty record, They're Coming to Take Me Away Ha-Haaa by Napoleon XIV didn't have something to do with the inspiration for Out of My Mind. For both Neil Young and Napoleon XIV, psychedelic drugs seemed an invitation to madness, not enlightenment. Why should one travel through the keyhole of an already open door? Or be happy not to know what you're smiling for?

The reverb on the guitar in Out of My Mind suggests a druggy murk, though drug use is never explicit. The lyric echoes the music, representing a peaceful attitude of being cut off from reality. A lilting secondary melody sung by the Springfield demonstrates a careless frivolity. But the poetic leap in this presentation (of what I take to be a psychedelic--not psychotic!—reaction) is at the pause ejecting the lyric Out of my mind to join, daisy chain fashion, with the next verse. Here Neil Young seems to vividly represent taking it to the next level, leaving a previous set of assumptions behind. Or might it convey self-distraction, losing one's train of thought? The ominous "they" near the end of the second verse seems to bend the lyric toward a negative They're coming to take me away sensibility. Who are they? They seem to be chauffeurs, but maybe they're hearse drivers. The song closes with "Out of my mind!" ringing to begin a verse that doesn't continue.