38 Years Old

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"38 Years Old"
The Hip - 38 Years Old single cover.jpg
Single by The Tragically Hip
from the album Up to Here
ReleasedApril 1990
GenreFolk rock
Songwriter(s)Rob Baker
Gordon Downie
Johnny Fay
Paul Langlois
Gord Sinclair
Producer(s)Mark Howard
The Tragically Hip singles chronology
"Boots or Hearts"
"38 Years Old"
"Trickle Down"

"38 Years Old" is a song by Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip. It was released in April 1990 as the fourth single from the band's first full-length studio album, Up to Here. The song peaked at No. 41 on the Canadian RPM singles chart.[1] Though it is one of The Tragically Hip's most popular songs, the band seldom played the song live.


The song was written in Memphis during their recording of the album.[2]


It is a fictional account of the real-life escape of 14 inmates from Millhaven Institution near the band's hometown of Kingston, Ontario on July 10, 1972.[3][4] The date of the event and the number of escapees mentioned in the song are historically incorrect ("12 men broke loose in '73..."). This was done for the purpose of meter, and for rhyming with the next line of the song ("...from Millhaven maximum security.")


Chart (1990) Peak
Canadian RPM Singles Chart[1] 41


  1. ^ a b "Top Singles - Volume 52, No. 2, May 26, 1990". RPM. Archived from the original on October 18, 2012. Retrieved 2010-09-18.
  2. ^ "The Tragically Hip - Up to Here - Archive: Song @ Album Notes - Record Info and Credits". thehip.com. Archived from the original on 2010-01-03. Retrieved 2010-09-18.
  3. ^ The Montreal Gazette (1972-07-12). "Escaped convicts thought contained in 10-mile square". Retrieved 2015-01-05.
  4. ^ The Montreal Gazette (1972-07-17). "Search area expanded for Millhaven cons". Retrieved 2015-01-05.