I Enjoy Being a Girl

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"I Enjoy Being a Girl"
Song from Flower Drum Song
Published 1958
Songwriter(s) Oscar Hammerstein II
Composer(s) Richard Rodgers

"I Enjoy Being a Girl" is a show tune from the 1958 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Flower Drum Song. It is the showpiece for the character of Linda Low, the lead showgirl. The musical is a comedic love story about growing up Chinese in America, the clash between the traditional values of the old country and the modern ways of America.

Though Flower Drum Song was not as successful as other Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, the song "I Enjoy Being a Girl" has remained a popular choice for recording vocalists, including Doris Day, Peggy Lee, Pat Suzuki, Lea Salonga, Florence Henderson, and Phranc.

The lyrics praise the traditional values of being a woman who longs to be the object of a man's affection.[1] It is often considered to be "camp" or "kitsch" and has frequently been performed by drag queens.

Soundtrack recordings[edit]

The original Broadway cast recording from 1958 includes the version sung by Pat Suzuki, who originated the role of Linda Low.[2] When the musical was rewritten and revived by David Henry Hwang in 2002, Sandra Allen recorded a new version. The version recorded for the 1961 film soundtrack is credited to the character (Linda Low) rather than the actress (Nancy Kwan) as it was sung by B. J. Baker, who is not of Asian descent.[3]

Cover versions[edit]

The song has been covered by Sarah Jessica Parker in a Gap commercial in 2005 and went viral as the parody "I Enjoy Being Al Gore" (recorded by the Capitol Steps in 1998).[1] Comedian Roseanne Barr released an album entitled "I Enjoy Being a Girl" in 1990, covering the song as its last track.[1][4] It was also covered in Episode 24 of season 3 of "The Muppet Show", when Cheryl Ladd and Miss Piggy bash a dummy and Kermit is set loose in Ladd's dressing room.[5]

Transgender pioneer and activist Christine Jorgensen notably performed the song in nightclubs during the late 1960s.[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Viser, Matt; Levenson, Michael; Estes, Andrea (4 October 2009). "Song strikes a chord for Coakley". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  2. ^ "Pat Suzuki". Masterworks Broadway. Sony Music Entertainment. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  3. ^ Hurwit, Robert (8 February 2003). "'Flower Drum Song' set to different beats". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  4. ^ I Enjoy Being a Girl at Discogs (list of releases)
  5. ^ Henson, Jim (11 May 1978). "5/11/1978 – 'Cheryl Ladd (MS)'". Jim Henson's Redbook. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  6. ^ Wild, Chris (27 April 2015). "1951: "Ex-GI Becomes Blonde Beauty"". Mashable. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 

External links[edit]