Cause I'm A Man

Songfacts®:

  • The lead single from Tame Impala's third album, Currents, and the second song released, following "Let It Happen," this finds a vulnerable Kevin Parker taking shots at his own masculinity after a loss of control.

    Cause I'm a man, woman
    Not often proud of what I choose
    I'm a human, woman
    A greater force I answer to


    According to the press release, this song and "Let It Happen" were "sketched out in planes, cars, hotels and homes" by Parker following the completion of Tame Impala's previous album Lonerism in 2012.
  • Tame Impala played this song for the first time live during their gig on April 8, 2015 at the Fox Theatre in Pomona, California.
  • Kevin Parker explained the song's meaning. "Lyrically I'm not usually that out there and straight up saying things, but it's meant to be really tongue-in-cheek at the same time," he said. "The song is about how weak men are, basically, and how we make all these excuses but really we're just these odorous male members of the animal kingdom."
  • The song's 3D video was directed by LA-based artist Weirdcore, who has previously worked with the likes of The Horrors ("Mirror's Image") and Gwen Stefani ("Baby Don't Lie"). "Visually for me, the video is like a kind of homage to Hipgnosis artwork, as I feel Tame Impala's music is suited to that look and feel. Tame Impala's new artwork was a great inspiration for the vibe of it. I happily threw in as many artwork cameos as I could from that," said the the director. "Technically the constant moving camera was an ideal way to show near non-moving scenarios, long takes and minimal editing is something I'm always into doing."

    "This is the first 3D video I've made where none of the 3D was modeled for it," he added. "All assets were either bought/found/acquired/customized from various sources, so it's a bit like a 3D collage."
  • Tame Impala also issued a "live video," featuring puppet versions of the group playing along to the song.
  • The song has been interpreted by some as Parker blaming his bad behavior simply on being male. Speaking in an interview with Stereogum, the Tame Impala frontman suggested that he knew the song would prove divisive. "It's really meant to be interpreted more like 'I'm a man' as in 'I'm a human. I'm merely a man,'" he said.

    "I understand how it can be perceived as sexist, almost misogynistic, but put it this way: I know deep in my heart, I am not in any way sexist," Parker continued. "And I knew there would be people who would think that. There was a small part of me that was excited about ruffling some feathers 'cause I never do that, you know? I'm not that kind of person."
  • Kevin Parker told Uncut magazine that the number one ingredient he was going for on this song was a minimal soul-pop vibe. He explained: "That song, I wanted to do something that was more sultry, more sensitive and minimal. It was one of things that I wanted to try: of course myself to create songs with more minimal arrangements. I've always been into minimal music, whether it's Serge Gainsbourg or electronic music – I love it when there's just a couple of ingredients in a song and then that's it. But I can never help myself!"

    "So for this one," he continued. "I wanted to see if I could resist the temptation and make a soundscape that remains quite sparse."

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