Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves

Album: Be Yourself Tonight (1985)
Charted: 9 18

Songfacts®:

  • Annie Lennox, Aretha Franklin and The Charles Williams Gospel Choir share the vocals on this modern feminist anthem that Lennox put together with help from her bandmate, Dave Stewart.

    Lennox explained in a 1991 interview with Q: "'Sisters Are Doin' It For Themselves was a challenge, to write a pop song that could be played on the radio yet was a feminist anthem. I woke up one morning and wrote all the words. I had a vision of it, and said to Dave that this idea needs a fantastic woman to sing it with. I'd thought of Tina Turner, and we contacted her but she found the content too feminist. But Aretha Franklin wanted to do it, and we flew to Detroit. I got along all right with her but we didn't have an immediate rapport. Aretha struck me as rather shy, a bit sad, a bit lonely. She had an entourage which I thought a bit eccentric - I wasn't used to it."
  • In an interview coinciding with her 2006 ASCAP Founders Award, Annie Lennox said: "Women are the most extraordinary force in the world. There is such a strong need for feminism, particularly in developing countries where women are still relegated to third class citizen status - where they don't have choices about their fertility, education and life choices. I'm very grateful for the things that feminism has offered me. I can vote in a democratic system. Women and men are trying to progress together, but women very often carry the brunt of the burden in life. Actually, I do like to take the opportunity to speak up for women's rights."
  • Three members of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers played on this track: Mike Cambell on guitar, Stan Lynch on drums, and Benmont Tench on organ. Acclaimed session man Nathan East handled bass; Lennox added keyboards.
  • This was featured in the 1996 film The First Wives Club and in the 2003 movie Legally Blonde 2.

Comments: 2

  • Just Sayin' from StrayaIronically, vocals aside, not many sisters doin it for themselves on the track (musician wise).
  • Lorelei from Ellsworth, Mewow this would b one of my favorite bands!!
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