Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Joan Jett, "You Don't Own Me"

Lesley Gore, the most accomplished Sarah Lawrence literature student of all time, will be best remembered for "It's My Party," but I'd guess most dedicated music fans prefer "You Don't Own Me," one of the best (and earliest) feminist anthems that rock music has ever offered, still potent enough to star in an excellent Planned Parenthood PSA 50 years after its release.

Appropriately, future feminist icon Joan Jett covered it on her first album, Bad Reputation, announcing to the world what anyone who'd been paying attention to the Runaways already knew. She doesn't do much with it (why mess with perfection?), but it stands out as an exemplary case of Jett's punk-pop sensibilities, and of how Gore's music inspires, and will continue to inspire, girls to tell boys where to shove it. Thank you, Lesley Gore.

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