Malvina Reynolds: Song Lyrics and Poems  



We Don't Need the Men

Notes: words and music by Malvina Reynolds; copyright 1959 Schroder Music Company, renewed 1987. Yes, this was written in the 50s, and does fall a bit harshly on some ears. Malvina updated it for the 70s by singing "when we've got a lot of dirty dishes" instead of "when we need to move the piano." In the Notes to her songbook Little Boxes and Other Handmade Songs Malvina writes: "I sang for a party of the Mine Mill and Smelter Workers local in Kellogg, Idaho. When we got there, a little cluster of young wives were sitting around a plain table under a drop light. The men were all next door in the bar. I sang 'We Don't Need the Men,' and they kept me singing. Presently heads began to poke in from next door to find out what all the fun was about, and pretty soon all the men were in. Every time a new couple arrived, the girls had me sing this one over again."


It says in Coronet Magazine,
June nineteen-fifty six, page ten,
That married women are not as happy
As women who have no men.
Married women are cranky,
Frustrated and disgusted,
While single women are bright and gay,
Creative and well adjusted.

We don't need the men,
We don't need the men,
We don't need to have them round
Except for now and then.
They can come to see us
When we need to move the piano,
Otherwise they can stay at home
And read about the White Sox.
We don't care about them,
We can do without them,
They'll look cute in a bathing suit
On a billboard in Manhattan.

We don't need the men,
We don't need the men,
We don't need to have them round
Except for now and then.
They can come to see us
When they have tickets for the symphony,
Otherwise they can stay at home
And play a game of pinochle.
We don't care about them,
We can do without them,
They'll look cute in a bathing suit
On a billboard in Wisconsin.

We don't need the men,
We don't need the men,
We don't need to have them round
Except for now and then.
The can come to see us
When they're feeling pleasant and agreeable,
Otherwise they can stay at home
And holler at the T.V. programs.
We don't care about them,
We can do without them,
They'll look cute in a bathing suit
On a billboard in Madagascar.

We don't need the men,
We don't need the men,
We don't need to have them round
Except for now and then.
They can come to see us
When they're all dressed up with a suit on,
Otherwise they can stay at home
(Spoken:) And drop towels in their own bathroom.
We don't care about them,
We can do without them,
They'll look cute in a bathing suit
On a billboard in Tierra del Fuego.


Malvina Reynolds songbook(s) in which the music to this song appears:
---- Little Boxes and Other Handmade Songs
---- The Malvina Reynolds Songbook

Other place(s) where the music to this song appears:
---- Peter Blood-Patterson: Rise Up Singing: The Group-Singing Song Book [lyrics & guitar chords only] (Bethlehem, PA: Sing Out Corp., 1988), p. 251
---- Joyce Cheney, Marcia Deihl and Deborah Silverstein: All Our Lives: A Woman's Songbook (Baltimore: Diana Press, 1976)
---- Sing Out!, Volume 34(2) (1989), pp. 10-11
---- Hilda E. Wenner and Elizabeth Freilicher, Here's To the Women: 100 Songs For and About American Women (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 1987)

Malvina Reynolds recordings of this song:
---- Held Over
---- Virgo Rising; The Once and Future Woman (Thunderbird LP 7037, 1973)

Recordings by other artists on which this song is performed:
---- The Bluestein Family: Shut Up and Sing!: The Bluestein Sampler (Greenhays GR70720, 1990)
---- Eugene Chadbourne: The Acquaduct (Rectangle REC-E2, 2000/1996)
---- Rude Girls: Mixed Messages (Flying Fish FF 70511, 1990)
---- listen to youtube.com video
---- listen to youtube.com video


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