Like the Way I Do

Album: Melissa Etheridge (1988)
Charted: 42

Songfacts®:

  • This incendiary rocker was inspired by the same relationship Etheridge wrote about in her song "Bring Me Some Water." When her lover took up with another woman, it lit a fire under Etheridge, and in this song she makes it clear that this other woman will never be able to match up to Melissa.
  • At the suggestion of her label, Island Records, Etheridge didn't reveal that she was gay until 1993, so most listeners assumed that in early songs like this one, she was singing about a man. Etheridge was always careful about identifying genders in her songs, so they could be interpreted to be about either a man or a woman.
  • At track from Etheridge's first album, "Like the Way I Do" was her second song to chart, making #28 on the Billboard Modern Rock chart in December 1988 ("Bring Me Some Water" was the first). It was a slow climb for Etheridge, but it worked in her favor, giving her time to develop her live shows and gradually build a following. The album came out in May 1988, and later that year many rock stations added this song and "Water" to their playlists, providing a rare female voice amid the likes of Guns N' Roses and Tom Petty. Etheridge made a lot of promotional appearance at these stations, winning over fans and program directors in baby steps.
  • In our 2015 interview with Melissa Etheridge, she cited this as her favorite song. "That song is just a monster to play and I love how people love it," she said.
  • This song was re-released in 1995, making #42 on the US Hot 100.
  • In 1996, Etheridge performed this on Sesame Street as "Like the Way U Do." In this version, the song is a tribute to the letter U.
  • The video was directed by Anthony Van Den Ende, the same guy who brought us the A Flock of Seagulls classic "I Ran (So Far Away)."

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