I’M A BOY (song)

I’m a Boy 1966

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Released 26 August 1966 (UK)
Format Vinyl record (7″)
Recorded 31 July – 1 August 1966;
IBC Studios in London, UK
Genre Power pop
Length 2:34
Label Reaction 591004 (UK)
Decca (US)
Songwriter(s) Pete Townshend
Producer(s) Kit Lambert

“I’m a Boy” is a 1966 rock song written by Pete Townshend for The Who. The song, like other early recordings by the band, such as “I Can’t Explain”, “The Kids Are Alright” and “Happy Jack”, centers on the early power pop genre. The song was originally intended to be a part of a rock opera called ‘Quads’ which was to be set in the future where parents can choose the sex of their children. The idea was later scrapped, but this song survived and was later released as a single.

The song is about a family who “order” four girls, but a mistake is made and three girls and one boy are delivered instead. The boy dreams of partaking in sports and other boy-type activities, but his mother forces him to act like his sisters and refuses to believe the truth (“I’m a boy, I’m a boy, but my Ma won’t admit it”). The track was produced by Kit Lambert at IBC Studios around 31 July – 1 August 1966 and released just over three weeks later on 26 August 1966 with “In the City” as the B-side. The single was successful in the British Isles, reaching number 2 in the UK Singles Chart and Number 7 in Ireland. It failed to repeat that success in the US.