In 1967, Aretha Franklin recorded a song that has become a part of our culture, “Respect.”. It is said to be a feminist marching song, demanding respect for women. Coupled with her performance of “Freedom”, in Blues Brothers, in which she publicly chews out her husband, we have a perfect image of female emancipation, all embodied in one person.
But I discovered something this morning……..
This female demand for respect was written by a man, and recorded two years earlier, in 1965! Here is a recording of the original songwriter singing his soon-to-be chart topper
What you want, honey, you got it
And what you need, baby, you’ve got it
All I’m asking, for a little respect
When I come home.
~ Otis Redding, 1965
These opening lines were originally the heart cry of a husband to be respected in his own home. Ironic, huh?