Blood Water is a Chapin Brothers song written by Harry released on the Chapin Music! album in 1966. The song's inspiration comes from Harry's experiences at Cornell University, where he attended twice until he "broke out", as he was fund of saying later during interviews and performances. The song is based on two events at Cornell, a suicide from a bridge over a gorge on campus and the second the practice of dyeing the river a different color each spring. The year in question in the song, 1964, the river was dyed red, hence the name of the song.
This song is an early version of Harry taking a disturbing event, weaving a narrative around it and turning it into a song.
Occasionally, Cornell becomes the focus of national attention due to the dramatic nature of these suicides, even though statistically Cornell's suicide rate is no greater than that of other universities. In March 2010, a spike in suicides resulted in Cornell assigning police officers and security to the area.