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The Who - I'm a Boy - Lyrics Meaning

I'm a Boy was written and performed by the Who, one of the leaders of the music revolution of the sixties in the UK. Written by the band's innovative songwriter Pete Townshend, I'm a Boy was released in August 1966, and made it to number two in the UK charts, whilst failing to make any impact whatsoever in the US.

Pete Townshend's thinking behind "I'm a boy" was generally unknown but very interesting. The song was supposed to be part of a musical that he intended to write, where parents of the future were allowed to choose the sex of their children. The singer's mother has selected four girls, and by mistake, three girls and one boy were born instead.

The song's cleverly crafted lyrics describe how the young boy is forced to dress up as a girl by his mother because his mother is not allowed to admit otherwise, for obvious reasons. The singer bemoans his fate and longs to take part in all the activities that young pre-pubescent children take part such as fighting, playing sports, possibly cutting his leg and seeing his blood and coming home all covered in blood.

I'm a Boy could hardly be described as one of the Who's classics, but never the less plays a part in their history.