I Want a Boy for My Birthday (1982) – The Smiths

I Want a Boy for My Birthday was singer Morrissey & lead guitarist Marr’s debut recording (Home demo). The Smiths played this song at their first rehearsal. This is a cover of a song made by The Cookies. I really like the original as well as the Smiths version. Fans were used to hearing just 30 second snippets of the bootleg and by golly they were excited when the entire demo (at the end of this article) was released.

I want a boy for my birthday
That’s what I’ve been dreaming of
Just a boy for my birthday
One love to make me right

Don’t want a bracelet with golden charms
‘Cause that won’t fill my empty arms
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
I want a boy to love

Someone wrote in the YT comments about the original – ‘I used to cry every time it came on because I thought they meant they wanted a little brother – dang!

According to this page: The track was recorded in Johnny’s attic bedroom on his TEAC three track cassette recorder, August 1982. The Home demo was given to The Smiths then Bassist Dale Hibbert, in order that he could familiarize himself with the track before The Smiths debut gig @ The Ritz, Manchester. The full 3-minute version in higher audio quality courtesy of Dale Hibbert—a sound engineer who briefly placed bass in The Smiths during the band’s beginnings.

The following is from the reference below:
According to Simon Goddard’s book, “Songs That Saved Your Life: The Art of The Smiths 1982-87 Hibbert leaked the lo-fi version in the 90s, while selling the original cassette to a collector.

Here is an excerpt from Goddard’s book noting the recording:

“The earliest known surviving document in the recording history of The Smiths stems from those very first attic practice sessions with Morrissey, Marr, and Hibbert. It was for the latter’s benefit that the singer and guitarist taped a simple arrangement of ‘I Want a Boy for My Birthday,’ a 1963 B-side by New York girl group The Cookies, on Marr’s TEAC machine so that Hibbert could learn the melody in preparation for The Smiths’ first demo session. The cover was Morrissey’s idea. ‘I’d never heard it before,’ says Marr, ‘but I thought, “Great, this’ll really freak ’em out!” I was really happy to encourage it.’ “

1. Listen to the Full Version of The Smiths’ Historic First Recording “I Want A Boy For My Birthday” – Post – Punk

“The more I live, the more I learn. The more I learn, the more I realize, the less I know.”- Michel Legrand

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Posted in Music
8 comments on “I Want a Boy for My Birthday (1982) – The Smiths
  1. Badfinger (Max) says:

    I like hearing early recordings by bands…lol it sounds like our beginning recordings. We started about a year or so later.

  2. Gosh, I never even knew about this track, thank you.

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