I Like Myself

Songfacts®:

  • Kate Davis went through a long journey to arrive at the place of self-acceptance she sings about in "I Like Myself." A big step was realizing that validation needed to come from herself, not from others, and especially not a boyfriend.

    The lyric is a take-off on a 1955 song called "I Like Myself" written by Betty Comden and Adolph Green. Gene Kelly introduced the song in the movie It's Always Fair Weather, but the version Davis remembered is by Blossom Dearie, who sings:

    He likes me, so I like myself.
    If someone wonderful as he is can think I'm wonderful
    I must be quite a gal!


    In a Songfacts interview with Davis, she said: "When I was writing and I would get stuck, I would just go back 50 years or more and get inspired by these sentiments and these writing styles and older stories that I could pick out and shine a different light on. So the song went through a big evolution because it started out feeling like you only liked yourself if you were validated by another person, and as I went through more things in my life, I realized that wasn't the way I wanted to live, and it wasn't a way in which I would be empowered, so the only way to help change the narrative in my own life was to literally write it into a song, so I did that."
  • Davis had been performing this song for years by the time it was finally released on her debut album, Trophy, in 2019. The holdup was a dispute with her record label, which signed her after she went viral with a sardonic jazz cover of "All About That Bass" called "All About That (Upright) Bass." The label saw her as a retro-jazz stylist in the vein of Amy Winehouse, and they were hoping for more viral hits. Davis wanted nothing to do with retro, adopting a contemporary sound for her complex and often confessional songs. She eventually parted ways with the label, but it cost her a great deal of time and energy. Trophy was released on another label, Solitaire Recordings.

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