I actually heard this song in 1987, I had picked up a "60's mix cassette(yes a cassette) at a rest stop off the autobahn near Trier in Germany near the Luxemburg border. Trier was originally a Roman city back in the day...I was on a road trip and my regular group of songs that I carried in my Mustang were sounding real tired. I really enjoyed this cassette and the mix of 60's songs...some of them I remembered my Dad playing and others that I have never heard of. It made the trip a little less long....Trier was a long way from Stuttgart where I was stationed. I think I wore the cassette out when I was in the Gulf, that sand got into everything , but I still have my boombox radio that I had bought from the PX, the radio looks worse for wear, and one of the cassette players quit working....I am sure the door getting torn off was a factor in that. Here is the radio in my bonus room with all of my other souvenirs of my travels.
"In the Year 2525 (Exordium et Terminus)" is a 1969 hit song by the American pop-rock duo of Zager and Evans. It reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 for six weeks commencing July 12, 1969. It peaked at number one in the UK Singles Chart for three weeks in August and September that year. The song was written and composed by Rick Evans in 1964 and originally released on a small regional record label (Truth Records) in 1968. A year later, an Odessa, Texas, radio station popularized the disc, which RCA Records quickly picked up for nationwide distribution. Zager and Evans disbanded in 1971. Denny Zager now builds custom guitars in Lincoln, Nebraska.
"In the Year 2525 (Exordium and Terminus)" opens with the words "In the year 2525, If man is still alive, If woman can survive, They may find...". Subsequent verses pick up the story at 1010-year intervals from 2525 to 6565. Disturbing predictions are given for each selected year. In the year 3535, for example, all of a person's actions, words and thoughts will be preprogrammed into a daily pill. Then the pattern as well as the music changes, going up a half step in the key of the song, after two stanzas, first from A-flat minor, to A minor, and, then, finally, to B flat minor, and verses for the years 7510, 8510 and 9595 follow.
The song has no chorus. Amid ominous-sounding orchestral music, the final dated chronological verse is,
- In the year 9595, I'm kinda wonderin' if Man is gonna be alive.
- He's taken everything this old Earth can give, and he ain't put back nothin', whoa-whoa...,
- Now it's been 10,000 years, Man has cried a billion tears,
- For what, he never knew. Now man's reign is through.
- But through eternal night, The twinkling of starlight.
- So very far away, Maybe it's only yesterday.
The overriding theme, of a world doomed by its passive acquiescence to and overdependence on its own overdone technologies, struck a resonant chord in millions of people around the world in the late 1960s.
The song describes a nightmarish vision of the future as man's technological inventions gradually dehumanize him. It includes a colloquial reference to the Second Coming (In the year 7510, if God's a-coming, He ought to make it by then.), which echoed the zeitgeist of the Jesus movement.