Today’s song is about someone ready to move on from a relationship, even though it's going to hurt. The band’s lead singer, Kevin Cronin explained, "I had been in love with...a girl that I met in high school. But...I knew that it wasn't working, so I went to Colorado to put some distance between me and her…”
At the time this song arrived on the radio, this band was one of the biggest acts in America. That said, most music videos came from European acts at the time, so the network was desperate for American rockers.
Even though the song was three years old by the time it played on MTV, the network put a live video of the band performing this song at McNichols Arena in Denver from a few years earlier in rotation.
When American bands began to realize the power of MTV, thanks in part to the success of this song’s video, many began making concept videos.
Continued play on MTV was what finally broke the song for real and it would go on to become a massive American radio hit. Over the years it has become one of the band’s best-known songs and a staple on American FM radio.
As it turned out, sadly, the girl this song was written about has been missing for decades. The band’s lead singer Kevin said, "I literally just got a call from this mystery TV show - kind of a reality TV show - that the girl that I wrote this song about...literally, went missing, like, 30 years ago. And they were calling me. I declined to be filmed for the show."
Fortunately, there is a happier postscript! The song saw a recent resurgence after being featured on the Netflix hit, Ozark. The episode Kevin Cronin Was Here (season 3, episode 3), features this song live, along with lead character Wendy singing along to the song in her car.
This resulted in the song making the top 40 on the Billboard Digital Songs Chart – its best chart placement ever, 42 years after its initial release!
REO Speedwagon...Time For Me To Fly...On K103’s I Know That Song!