Happy and I'm smiling
Walk a mile to drink your water
You know I'd love to love you
And above you there's no other

We'll go walking out
While others shout of war's disaster
Oh, we won't give in
Let's go living in the past

Once I used to join in
Every boy and girl was my friend
Now there's revolution, but they don't know
What they're fighting

Let us close our eyes
Outside their lives go on much faster
Oh, we won't give in
We'll keep living in the past

Oh, we won't give in
Let's go living in the past

Oh no, no we won't give in
Let's go living in the past


Lyrics submitted by knate15, edited by Living in the pust

"Living in the Past" as written by Ian Anderson

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Living In The Past song meanings
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18 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentThis song is a pretty obvious Tull song, about loving a woman. The first four stanzas hes just talking about how much he loves her, then gets to the point of the song. "We'll go walking out
    while others shout of war's disaster." This, to me, pretty clearly means that when hes with her he doesnt care about whats going on, just thinking about a time with her that everything was good. THe whole song is like that.
    jke45on November 04, 2005   Link
  • +3
    General CommentWow ... you seriously used Jethro Tull to preach about the Christan god? It was just a GREAT song by some English guys .... even Ian Anderson talks about just having a good time being a 'wacky English' band ... lol ...
    DaniHouseron May 04, 2013   Link
  • +2
    General CommentHELL of a good song. Exactly how I feel about modern life. Don't push your s*** on me! I don't need it!
    Juniper Prismon January 19, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThe turmoil of the Vietnam war and violence was pushing the baby boomers toward a revolution but the main character in this song has fallen in love and is rejecting the anger and pain others express to be with his love. "The past" is a time before rock and roll became political.
    stephen171on April 07, 2017   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm surprised nobody has commented on the meter. The 5-beat measure grabbed my attention from the first note.

    The unusual time signature whips this lovely song right around, like the breathlessness of a romantic past that'd tempt anybody to reinhabit.
    thelaurakon August 06, 2008   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationYou have to remember the time this song was written, was back in during the Viet Nam war. Some of the references are linked to the war protests. I think when IA said "but they don't know what their fighting" there is a reference to the power of the establishment that dictate these types of wars and the futility of smashing up against those power structures. His Heavy Horses has a similar theme, or Jack in The Green- putting aside technology and the madness of the modern social order in favor of a more natural and less polluted/conflicted world.
    dwight1041on February 07, 2019   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIrony: when the opposite of what is expected happens.

    There were a few attempts to get me into Tull, but IA scared me. Seriously.
    He looked like the type of guy that I could lose a girlfriend/wife to.

    OM sounded like magic to me. It was strange and yet beautiful. But it wasn't
    enough for me to set aside the "alpha male" "instinct" that controlled my youth. So I decided that I could live without it.


    The following summer, I ended up working at a camp for rich kids. A place where
    rich people send their kids to get rid of them for a couple of months. I wasn't actually a counselor, though, so I spent every evening alone in the cabin while everyone else was outside having fun. Well, at least I thought I was alone.

    One of the kids had brought along a stereo and a few CDs. One night, I was looking
    through them and found Aqualung. And, of course, how could anyone not be intrigued by the front cover. So I thought, what the hell, let's hear it. What really sold me was all the "akoostick" guitar playing. There was just something about the way he made it sound. That's all I remember, really, was just being amazed at all these great "akoostick" guitar songs.

    And that was the day I "officially 'became' " a Tullee.

    And now... the twain it won't stop goin NO WAY 2 Slow Down.
    Living in the puston November 13, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is kind of similar to "Inside." They have the same theme of love creating a shield that protects you from the outside world. (I think I like "Living In the Past" better.)
    greenbeanon December 29, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is kind of similar to "Inside." They have the same theme of love creating a shield that protects you from the outside world. (I think I like "Living In the Past" better.)
    greenbeanon December 29, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentA very fun and light-hearted Tull song, which was a rarity back in those days (around the time of "Stand Up").

    youtube.com/…
    Krendall2006on January 17, 2007   Link

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