The Teddy Bear Song

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"The Teddy Bear Song"
Single by Barbara Fairchild
from the album A Sweeter Love
B-side "(You Make Me Feel Like) Singing a Song"
Released December 1972
Recorded June 1972
Genre Country
Length 3:03
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Don Earl
Nick Nixon
Producer(s) Jerry Crutchfield
Barbara Fairchild singles chronology
"A Sweeter Love (I'll Never Know)"
(1972)
"The Teddy Bear Song"
(1972)
"Kid Stuff"
(1973)

"The Teddy Bear Song" is a 1973 single written by Don Earl and Nick Nixon, and made famous by country music vocalist Barbara Fairchild. Released in December 1972, the song became Fairchild's only No. 1 song on the Billboard magazine Hot Country Singles chart in March 1973.[1] The song also became a modest pop hit, peaking at No. 32 on the Billboard Hot 100 in June 1973.[2]

Song background[edit]

In "The Teddy Bear Song," the female protagonist expresses such dismay over poor choices in her life—most notably, a just-ended emotional love affair that ended badly—that she'd rather revert to the innocence of a department store-window teddy bear, as spoken in the song's main tag line, "I wish I was a teddy bear ..." . The song's lyrics depict the carefree, simple existence of the teddy bear she wishes she were: not having to dream, cry or express other emotion (except for a sweetly voiced "Hi, I'm Teddy. Ain't it a lovely day?" programmed on a pull string-activated voice chip), have regrets or feel sorry for herself.

"The Teddy Bear Song" was the first in a series of Fairchild songs where childhood themes were used to express dismay over broken relationships and the male-dominated hierarchy of traditional relationships. For instance, the follow-up "Kid Stuff" (a No. 2 country hit for Fairchild in October 1973) plays upon the childhood game of house, where a young woman recalls a childhood memory of how she played the game with a little boy, who dominated the game and was uncaring of her feelings; those feelings are re-triggered when as an adult, she enters into a relationship where the man is the dominant figure and is either ignorant or uncaring when she objects.

Cover versions[edit]

Several female country vocalists recorded cover versions of "The Teddy Bear Song," including Jean Shepard, Connie Smith, Diana Trask, Barbi Benton and Tanya Tucker.[3]

Honors[edit]

"The Teddy Bear Song" was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Country Vocal Performance by a Female in 1974, but did not win.

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1972–1973) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles 1
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 32
Canadian RPM Country Tracks 1
Canadian RPM Top Singles 42
Canadian RPM Adult Contemporary Tracks 24

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book Of Top 40 Country Hits: 1944-2006, Second edition. Record Research. p. 118. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits: Eighth Edition. Record Research. p. 217. 
  3. ^ "The Teddy Bear Song" at Allmusic.[1]

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"'Til I Get it Right"
by Tammy Wynette
Billboard Hot Country Singles
number-one single

March 17-March 24, 1973
Succeeded by
"Keep Me in Mind"
by Lynn Anderson
Preceded by
"Any Old Wind That Blows"
by Johnny Cash
RPM Country Tracks
number-one single

March 17-March 24, 1973