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John Madara

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You Don't Own Me

That Philly Sound

John Madara was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1936. He is a American singer-songwriter and record producer who looks back to a vast range of successful songs.

John teamed up with David White and Arthur Singer to write the international hit “At the Hop” (1957). On November 27, 2016, the song was announced to be inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

“You Don’t Own Me” is a popular song written by Philadelphia songwriters John Madara and David White and recorded by Lesley Gore in 1963, when Gore was 17 years old.

The song was Gore’s second most successful recording and her last top-ten single. On November 27, 2016, along with 24 other songs, the Grammy Hall of Fame announced its induction.

The song expresses emancipation, as the singer tells a lover that he does not own her, that he isn’t to tell her what to do or what to say, and that he is not to put her on display. The song’s lyrics became an inspiration for younger women and are sometimes cited as a factor in the second wave feminist movement.

Gore said, “My take on the song was: I’m 17, what a wonderful thing, to stand up on a stage and shake your finger at people and sing you don’t own me.”[3] In Gore’s obituary, The New York Times referred to “You Don’t Own Me” as “indelibly defiant”.

You Don't Own Me...

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The artist worked with labels such as Cameo-Parkway Records, Chancellor Records, Swan Records, Capitol Records, Mercury Records, Decca Records – CBS, Warner Bros., Polydor, Atlantic, Paramount, 20th Century, MGM and ABC Records.

His songs appeared in soundtrack albums of American Graffiti, Woodstock, Grease, Hairspray, Dirty Dancing, and others.

“In 1968, I wrote a song, SADIE (The Cleaning Lady), that has become the biggest selling record in the history of Australia, and has become their national anthem. Everybody knows it. Young and Old. Watch the interview. You will see the excitement. Further ahead, YOU DON’T OWN ME was the #1 song in Australia by Grace and G-Eazy in 2015, and was an International hit.”

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