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Hodgson, Roger – Breakfast in America - Breakfast in America

Identifier

027547

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

"Breakfast in America" was written by Hodgson during his late teens at a time when he "had a lot of dreams" and still brings a smile to his face when he sings it on stage.

Prior to writing the song, he was driven to find a harmonium (also known as a pump organ); he found one at an old lady's house in a village in the countryside where he lived in England, which he bought for 24 pounds. Hodgson brought it home and proceeded to write many songs on it immediately, "Breakfast in America" being one of them - because the harmonium "had a magical quality to it and still does".

He had the lyrics written in about an hour in a "stream-of-consciousness" fashion, …. while "dreaming of having kippers for breakfast to flying to America and seeing the girls in California, among other things". Hodgson still has the instrument today. The sound on the record is the original harmonium and a grand piano.

Jeb: Were you involved with the cover art? It is an iconic cover.

Roger: We were very involved with the sleeve. We had a guy named Mike Dowd that we had worked with for a couple of covers. We gave him our ideas and he came to us with his ideas. Eventually, he came to us with the idea in sketch form. I remember choosing the lady that was on the cover, her name was Libby. The original cover had a sexy, young waitress but we felt that wasn’t us. We felt like a more frumpy, twinkly, middle aged lady would be better. We chose the lady from a modeling agency. It really represented the more eccentric quality of the band. It was a great idea.

Jeb: Where are you eating at on the back cover?

Roger: It was a diner where we went to have breakfast. I think we’d eaten there a couple of times before but we did have a photo shoot in the diner.

A description of the experience

"Breakfast In America"

 

Take a look at my girlfriend
She's the only one I got
Not much of a girlfriend
Never seem to get a lot

Take a jumbo across the water
Like to see America
See the girls in California
I'm hoping it's going to come true
But there's not a lot I can do

Could we have kippers for breakfast
Mummy dear, Mummy dear
They got to have 'em in Texas
Cos everyone's a millionaire

I'm a winner, I'm a sinner
Do you want my autograph
I'm a loser, what a joker
I'm playing my jokes upon you
While there's nothing better to do

Don't you look at my girlfriend
She's the only one I got
Not much of a girlfriend
Never seem to get a lot

Take a jumbo cross the water
Like to see America
See the girls in California
I'm hoping it's going to come true
But there's not a lot I can do

The source of the experience

Hodgson, Roger

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Symbols

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Commonsteps

References