He’s Funny That Way

milkboys Music 5 Comments

Bob Dylan has recorded a song for a compilation EP with a same-sex love theme called Universal Love. Dylan’s contribution to the six-song EP, which also features Kesha, St. Vincent, Ben Gibbard, Valerie June and Bloc Party’s Kele Okereke, comes with a characteristic twist: Reflecting his recent covers-heavy albums, he’s covered the 1929 song “She’s Funny That Way” with the lyrical variation “He’s Funny That Way.” The EP is released today.

Dylan is not the first to alter the pronoun in the song — which has been covered by Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, Etta James, Liza Minelli, Nat King Cole and many others since it was featured in the 1931 film “Gems of MGM” — but the point is made.

“If you look at the history of pop music, love songs have predominantly come from one heterosexual perspective,” said Tom Murphy, a co-producer of “Universal Love,” said. “If we view music as something that brings people together, shouldn’t these popular songs be open to everyone?”

Other tracks include Gibbard covering the Beatles’ “And I Love Her” (changed to “Him”) and June covering “Mad About the Boy” as “Girl.” Kesha chose Janis Joplin’s “I Need a Man to Love.” “For years I said that I’m not getting married until any two people can legally marry in this country,” she said — and is now an ordained minister who has wed to two gay couples.

You can listen to the full EP on Spotify.

Comments 5

  1. QUOTE: “Dylan’s contribution to the six-song EP, which also features Kesha, St. Vincent, Ben Gibbard, Valerie June and Bloc Party’s Kele Okereke, …”

    LOL. I am so detached from the current music scene I didn’t recognize any name above except Dylan, who I grew up with. As for the others, I couldn’t pick any of them out of a lineup if my life depended on it. And I couldn’t care less. Contemporary ‘music’ is utterly bankrupt. Heck, most of today’s performers just sing and dance – they can’t even play an instrument let alone write their own songs. They’re pathetic. It seems the few that do compose their own material are rappers and there’ll be blizzards in Tucson before I submit to the indignity of listening to that.

    Gimme that old time, heavy metal, hair-band rock and roll. Reagan Administration music rules. You have to go back 2-300 years to find anything better.

    1. Same here, although I heard the name Kesha somewhere. All these artists sound like they were born yesterday except that crooner Dylan who sounds like he was dead yesterday in this video… ;)

      But hey, there’s excellent rap too, even gay rap, like the French Eddy de Pretto rapper I posted about earlier. But I’ll agree that most rap and hip-hop sucks, I usually skip all of it because there’s too much waste and too little great songs. It’s pretty bad how today’s singers have perverted the “R&B” genre too, nothing really rhythmic or bluesy in these modern songs. There’s usually a good telltale sign to indicate the songs or albums or artists are not worth it: it’s when the song title is followed by “featuring XXX” even when “XXX” is a famous singer.

      Not sure changing a “her” for a “him” or a “he” for a “she” in a straight song is the best way to honor the LGBT community. There’s more to it than just a pronoun, and we should rather push songs that are gay or inclusive at their heart, not as an afterthought.

      Some songs are funny because they could apply both ways without the singer even realizing it, but often there’s this one or two verses that break the spell and make us realize that no, it was about a straight relationship after all, just like we knew all along but hoped differently…

      1. “It’s pretty bad how today’s singers have perverted the “R&B” genre too, nothing really rhythmic or bluesy in these modern songs.”

        I so agree with this and I’ll add something else about the “R&B” genre as well — they promote screamers and incredibly bad (again, more screaming) “gospelizing” of not just the new crap but also the classics from the 60s, 70s and 80s.

        One of the best examples of screamers is this song: “This Girl’s On Fire” by Alicia Keys.

        Example of atrocious “gospelizing” is “River” by Leon Bridges

  2. Well sung, but to me he doesn’t sound anything like a gay man singing about another man. Don’t ask me to define what that should sound like. I can’t. But that doesn’t change my impression.

  3. 1. WILL YOU STILL LOVE ME TOMORROW ? is about a woman singing for her man, even if only for the one time. She sings for my man. She CAN NOT sing otherwise but for my man. WILL YOU STILL LOVE MR TOMORROW ? is as gay homo faggot wierdo bent deviant love-my-man song as is most straight songs are. My boy, my man is what they sing for, as well as theirs. To be normal is to go along and not rock the boat. GET REAL !
    2. GAY MARRIAGE requires money. THAT IS NORMAl. Straight marriage aint no different. GET REAL !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *