Rant:  You’ve Come A Long Way, Baby

When I’m driving, I occasionally listen to “Oldies” radio, “oldies” defined as a “radio format  that concentrates on rock and roll and pop music from around the mid-1950s to the 1970s or 1980s.”

Unless you’re Generation Z, in which case “oldies” is defined as “so 20 minutes ago.”

Some oldies songs are good to hear, some not so good.

But when a song came on…

That was so egregiously bad, I almost had to pull into a rest stop and…

woman larger

While I wondered who wrote this and…

what_02 cropped larger

They were thinking it was 1963.  A time when…

Women were supposed to want this:

housewife_01 smaller

Read this:


And ignore this:

office_02 cropped

So it’s no wonder that the song’s lyrics start like this:

Hey! Little Girlwoman_01 reversed
Comb your hair, fix your makeup
Soon he will open the door.
Don’t think because there’s a ring on your finger
You needn’t try anymore.

The lyrics start there, and then get worse:

For wives should always be lovers, too
Run to his arms the moment he comes home to you
I’m warning you.

The song was “Wives and Lovers,” and it was all downhill from there:

Day after daywoman_01 reversed
There are girls at the office
And men will always be men.
Don’t send him off with your hair still in curlers
You may not see him again.

For wives should always be lovers, too
Run to his arms the moment he comes home to you
He’s almost here.

Hey! Little girl
Better wear something prettywoman_01 reversed
Something you’d wear to go to the city and
Dim all the lights, pour the wine, start the music
Time to get ready for love
Time to get ready
Time to get ready for love.

It won’t come as a surprise that these dreadful lyrics were written by a guy.

It may come as a surprise that one of the people who recorded the song won a Grammy in 1964.

But what’s really surprising is how many people recorded it:

More than 30.

And some of those were women.

But wait – it gets worse:

Cécile McLorin Salvant deliberately learned these lyrics, went to a recording studio, and included “Wives and Lovers” on her album For One to Love.

 Not in 1965, or 1985, or 2005 but in…


Yes, in 2015.

I’m going to rank Salvant’s giant leap for womankind right up there with these catchy lyrics I discovered, also from the 1960s:

You’ve come a long way, baby,
To get where you got to, today.
You’ve got your own cigarette now baby,
You’ve come a long, long way.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: