If I Were a Boy

Album: I Am… Sasha Fierce (2008)
Charted: 1 3
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  • This track represents a new sound for Beyoncé. The R&B singer explained to Essence magazine: "It's broad. But I had to try it, because I remember Aretha Franklin said a great singer can sing anything and make it her own." Beyoncé added that she was influenced by her recent role playing Etta James in Cadillac Records. She decided to follow the example of the blues and R&B singer and broadened her horizons. The Texan told Essence: "Etta expressed herself; she was bold. That inspired me to do a lot of things musically that no one else is doing."
  • This was produced and co-written by New York based Toby Gad, whose other credits include "Big Girls Don't Cry" for Fergie and The Veronicas' Top 10 Australian hit "Take Me on the Floor."
  • The song's music video was directed by Jake Nava, who previously helmed Beyonce's "Baby Boy." The Texan singer told Billboard magazine about the concept behind the clip, where she plays a police officer. She explained: "It's kind of like Freaky Friday. In the beginning of the video, my husband makes me breakfast and he's excited about it, and I kind of don't have time to eat. As a police officer, I have a male partner and the video goes through our days. My husband's at work and has attractive girls flirting with him but he declines their advances. I have a guy flirting with me, and I flirt back."
    Beyoncé added that the video depicts common things that men do to hurt their significant others, such as not answering their phone. She explained: "It's about all of the little things that mean so much in a relationship. At the end of the clip, you realize that I was acting out his life, and it all starts over again. He was a cop and everything that happened was really him doing the same thing to me."
  • Toby Gad and BC Jean penned this. This is the only song on I Am… Sasha Fierce that Beyoncé didn't co-write. BC Jean, whose real name is Britney Carlson, is a singer-songwriter from San Diego, California. According to Fox News, after Beyonce's people got wind of this song, possibly through Gad, they aggressively pursued the publishing rights to what they saw as a potential hit record.
  • After five collaborative chart-toppers this became Beyoncé's first ever truly solo #1 hit in the UK. The previous songs to feature the Texan singer, which reached the penthouse were "Independent Women (Part One)"and "Survivor," both as part of Destiny's Child, her duet with Shakira "Beautiful Liar"and Beyoncé's collaboration with her future husband Jay-Z, "Deja Vu." The singer's fifth UK #1 was "Crazy In Love", which again was with Jay-Z. Though it was credited to her alone for single release, the track was credited to them both on the album.
  • At the Grammy Awards in 2010, Beyoncé set a record for the most Awards by a female artist in a single year, when she took home six, beating her previous record five awards in 2004. At the ceremony, she performed this song in a medley with Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • BC Jean wrote and recorded the song before Beyoncé got hold of it. She told AOL Music: "Having someone like Beyoncé record your song about an ex-boyfriend, kinda makes it the best break-up ever. It started off as a simple therapeutic writing session and it turned into the best thing that ever happened to me."
  • On her 2010 tour, Beyoncé would stop and sing part of the Alanis Morissette song "You Oughta Know" in the middle of her performance of this song.

Comments: 37

  • Lara from Bundaberg, AusI am doing this song for a school project any advice on the message of the song would be appreciated, thanks
  • Jessica from Wakefieldamazing emotional song
  • Pete Tinsley from IrelandBeyonce has never explained the lyrics because it's not her song. Written by BC Jean, she already explained the exact meaning of her lyrics. It was written as a self therapy after splitting up with her ex and never really wanted Beyonce to sing her song because it was so personal. She had made the lyrics from entries in her diary during her relationship.
  • Colin from Glen Rock, Nj"If Beyonce was a boy...she would not understand...what it feels like to be a woman, she wouldn't know how to be a better man....."

    I understand Beyonce's meaning in the song, but in comes of way to ignorant and stereotypical to me. The song basically just tells me that Beyonce has date some jerks.
  • Zack from New Castle, United Kingdomi feel this song truly shows the complex ideologies of a relationship and men generally tend to sometimes b more unemotionaly and as stubborn so if things were changed up mayb that would open someones lives
  • Jtxgasmaskkid from New Castle , PaIMO, she's been treated like crap from a man and/or men in the past. She's saying that if she were a man, she would treat her girlfriend, spouse, etc good, better than she's been treated by other men.
  • Emily from New Castle, PaThis song is about if beyonce was a boy she would be faithful to her girlfriend, because she sees her viewpoint as a woman & how men dont take things seriously
  • Savage from New Castle, Pathis song was meant to explain the womans perspective in a relationship and to show SOME men what they do to their girls and to simply say put their self in their shoes and see how it feels.
  • Ridge from New Castle, PaMy views on the song shows how if the roles we're to change, things would be different.
  • Mary from New Castle, Pai think this is a good song to represent all the girls because it shows how boys dont care and do whatever they want. it should show them how girls feel.
  • Vannessa from New Castle, Pai love this song! its basically saying that if she was the man, in this situation, she wouldn't cheat. She would treat the woman right! The way they are supposed to be treated! :)
  • Leah from New Castle, Pathis is about boys being treated different than girls..if boys go out then can do whatever and no one is suppose to say anything but if girls do it the boys make a big deal about it
  • Vannessa from New Castle, Pai love this song! its basically saying that if she was the man, in this situation, she wouldn't cheat. She would treat the woman right! The way they are supposed to be treated! :)
  • Leneice from New Castle, PaThis song is saying how boys seem to be more seducive and less emotional or caring than girls. Beyonce is basically stating how if she were a boy she'd understand how a girls feels and would take the girl's perspective into question, rather than just doing what "she" felt "she" could. She's stating how boys dont understand how girls are when if your in a committed relationship you should try to understand. A relationship is a 2-way street and boys should realize that!
  • Bob from New Castle, Panow that i watched the viedo i understand the lyrics now but it is trying to show the faithfullness of eachother and if she was the man she wouldent act that way because she has been there and knows how it hurts, but if she really was a boy she wouldent kno because then she would have not been a girl to know how it hurts
  • Kayli from New Castle, Pato me shes saying if she was a boy she wouldnt act the way a lot of men do out there and would treat woman better because she knows what its like to be hurt.
  • Cassie from Pittsburgh, Pathis song exolains how men can treat women a certain way and get away with it. But, if a woman was to treat a man this same way it would be wrong. So beyonce is asking/saying, if i were a boy, i would do this or that and how would it make you as a man feel?
  • Tim from Turkey, BhutanThis song is about how men are able to flirt and think nothing about it as wrong. But if a girl were to do the same it would be wrong.
  • Jarvis from New Castle, Pathis song is all abut how you cheated on me but i didnt believe it but i saw it wit my own eyes
  • Tim from Turkey, BhutanBeyonce talks about how it's not fair that boys don't think flirting is wrong. They believe that she would be wrong for doing what they do while the man wouldn't.
  • Jared from New Castle, Pawhere if you go out with a girl and you go to a party and your girl is dancing with another dude just talk to her and dont get mad at her
  • Billy from New Castle, Pai think the song is about how guys get away with more things than guys and if a girl was acting like that she would get in trouble with her bpy friend but if a guy acted like that he would get away with that and nothing would happen
  • Brittney from New Castle, Tokelaui think this song is about how sometimes guys don't care as much as girls do. How they cant ever understand how they hurt girls by acting like it doesn't matter.

    -brittney moreland
  • Maria from New Castle, Pathis song is explaing how if she was a boy she would treat a girl better than boys treat girls.
  • Liah from New Castle, PaIt shows how men say things that can hurt women and they do not even realize it, but if the roles were reversed the men would understand exactly how the women feels when they are underapreciated
  • Akoye from New Castle, PaI love this sonq. She basically sayin if she was a boy she wouldnt act the way most men are and would treat woman better and consider their feelins. And she wouldnt cheat cuz she kno she has a qood woman at home. And she's riqht
  • Abbey from Pittsburgh, Pait sends a great message to men. esp. men in a relationship, its a little eye opener for them.
  • Kayla from Fort Lawn, Kyit helped me tell my boyfriend he was killing me slowly it worked the song is ur best one yet
  • Ryan from New York, NyAs a man, I was offended and annoyed by this song...at first. As a gay man in a relationship, my feelings changed when I actually experienced that "phone is broken" thing. Now I love this song more than ever. Not all men or boys are this s--tty but most of us are. I can see myself being like that "boy" in the song and I will try every day to be better. Women should do the same thing. But I know what Beyonce is saying. Some guys just suck...more of us then chicks. For reals!
  • Izzy from Casino, Australiathis song is like really slow and i dont understand the bit where everything is destroyed what happened there beyonce
  • Saj from Pleasant Hill, CaSir, that's why she said "but you're just a boy". She was referring to BOYS not MEN
  • Landon from Winchester, OhDave from Cardiff, Wales, you go, man! This song is a peice of crap! An unfair attack against any male, but the statistics tell otherwise. I'm getting really sick of these crappy feminist songs that leave out the truth.
  • Dave from Cardiff, WalesThis song just shows how clueless women really are about males in today's society. Women can be just as egotistacal and nasty as men. Beyonce's narrow views in the song are her opinions, but the statistics tell a very different story. If Beyonce really wants to put across the message that it is an easy life being a boy and that girls have it bad, perhaps she should consider the following issues as well: Men are victims of serious violence or murder by a ratio of 4 to 1 over women; Statistically boys actually suffer in school worse than the girls, but the girls are more often perceived as "struggling" by the media; The chances of being made homeless following a relationship breakup or divorce are statistically greater for the male party than for the female, and statistically men are more likely to get the short straw from a divorce settlement financially even if the dviorce has come about because woman cheated on her husband; For single fathers, the chance of seeing his children only on weekends (if at all) is greater than for single mothers; Men are more likely to face false accusations of domestic violence, child abuse, or rape than women (about half of all such allegations against males are now believed to be false); Male violence, even in self-defence, is generally perceived as that of a monster deserving emotionless justice; female violence is generally perceived as the result of mental illness, and deserving compassion; The chance of a man being innocent of a crime, but still convicted imprisoned, is greater for than for a woman (and the majority of posthumously exonerated victims of miscarriages of justice are male); The chances of a man being put to death for a crime is great, while extremely rare for a woman; Men constantly get told by women "how to be a better man", which society perceives as acceptable, while if a man tells a woman "how to be better woman", society views this as sexist and needlessly chauvinistic; Males have to hear women tell me how much better they have it, because they are male "If I were A Boy" is the most pathetic "feminist" song I've ever heard in my life! Sexist, chauvinistic drivel. If a male artist wrote a similar song from the other direction, there would quite rightly be a massive (worldwide) public outcry. Beyonce is undeniably talented, but many more misdirected songs like this could well spell her demise
  • Krista from Carbondale, PaAwesome song..anthem for all young girls out there who've ever had asshole boyfriends! Beyonce knows how to perform and I always give her props for that as well. :)
  • Kateri from Albany, Nythis song really has deep meaning
  • Anna from Si , NyThis song is the most ignorant thing I have ever heard in my life. It is non sensical everyone needs to get a grip. She's saying ridiculous things like "If I was a boy I would turn off my phone and say its broken..." She can do that now. "And everything you had got destroyed..." WHAT?
  • Knoxie from Liverpoool, Vanuatubest song ever made
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