Thursday, September 14, 2017


My daughter is currently four and addicted to super heroes. She has grown up movie tastes and one of her favorite movies is 2016's Suicide Squad. One of the character's in the film is Harley Quinn (played by actress Margot Robbie), the Joker's girlfriend. When they introduce her on the screen the song "You Don't Own Me" plays, and my daughter loves singing it and does a great job. It's scary! I wanted to look into some of the history of this song.

You Don't Own Me" was a popular song written by Philadelphia songwriters John Madara and David White and recorded by Lesley Gore in 1963, when Gore was 17 years old. The song was Gore's second most successful recording and her last top-ten single. On November 27, 2016, the Grammy Hall of Fame announced its induction, along with that of another 24 songs.

The song expresses a threatened emancipation, as the singer tells a lover that he does not own her, that he is not to tell her what to do or what to say, and that he is not to put her on display. The song's lyrics became an inspiration for younger women and are sometimes cited as a factor in the second wave feminist movement. Gore said, "My take on the song was: I'm 17, what a wonderful thing, to stand up on a stage and shake your finger at people and sing you don't own me." In Gore's obituary, The New York Times referred to "You Don't Own Me" as "indelibly defiant". The song was Gore's last top-ten single.

The song was covered by Australian singer and songwriter Grace and was released as her debut single. It features American rapper G-Eazy. Grace's version was produced by Quincy Jones, who also produced the original recording by Lesley Gore, and Parker Ighile. It was released on 17 March 2015 one month after Lesley Gore died, and peaked at number one on the ARIA Charts, later being certified 3× Platinum by the ARIA. The song was also a success in New Zealand, peaking at number five for two consecutive weeks, and in the United Kingdom, peaking at number four.

In an interview with House of Fraser, Grace said "[Quincy Jones] told me how the song came out during the feminist movement and how it was such a strong statement. I loved the song, started researching Lesley Gore and fell in love with her as an artist. [You Don't Own Me] really inspired me."

The song was featured in the third trailer for the 2016 film Suicide Squad and appeared on the film's soundtrack album as I wrote earlier. The song was a favorite song of my dad's and he had Leslie Gore's 45rpm of the song. However, it now brings tears to my eyes as I see my daughter sing it. To me the song represents the future of women like my daughter and a better life they will hopefully have... 


  1. You tell your daughter "Go, girl!"

    Interesting history on a song which means a lot.

  2. The song also appear in "The First Wife Club"

  3. Theres a movie thriller suspense horror kind of, that came out between 2000-2005 that you would have seen on cable not in the theatre.
    A young girl when away to a prep-school and one girl keeps slapping away her milk/drink maybe her tray of food. She kept doing that everyday only to find out the food made the girls “sick” they were hallucinating and they were killing the scene in the movie the girls are out in the wood and the trees look like monsters..It may have taken place in the 60’s the song You Don't Own Me by Lesley Gore keeps playing in my head but i can’t find that song on the soundtrack I’m thinking of it there is a soundtrack to that movie

    1. My goodness. I've seen that movie as a child. That's where I heard that song for the first time and fell in love with it. I loved the movie but I cannot remember the name and I cant find it no matter how I try.

    2. The Woods Just finished watching it

  4. It’s called “The Woods” 2006