This song has always fascinated me, as it's one of the very first "queer" songs. Now it surely wasn't intended to be that way, but as we look back at it, infusing our own cultural biases into it, well, it's pretty appealing. So I've set up this page to honor it and all the versions of it recorded over the years.
Merritt Brunies and his Friars Inn Orchestra Left to Right: Gordon Pouliot, Bill Paley, Henry Brunies, Maurie Friedman, Merritt Brunies, Bill Creger, Norman Van Hook, Clarence Piper, Rip Logan.
Merritt Brunies led this orchestra at the Friars Inn at 1834 Wasbash Street at Van Buren in Chicago. They got the gig after Merritt's brother George Brunies' band Friar's Society Orchestra vacated the job in 1924. Merrit's band stayed on at the Friar's Inn for three years before leaving for the Cinderella Ballroom. The Brunies' family produced several jazz musicians. Harry Brunies played trombone in the Friars Inn Orchestra and another of the Brunies brothers, Abbie was the leader of the Halfway House Orchestra back home in New Orleans.
Masculine Women, Feminine Men
Note: these are the complete lyrics, from the piano roll version of the song. Only the lines in purple were used in the recorded version.
Hey Hey women are going mad, today
Masculine Women Feminine Men
Women, Feminine Men" has
been recorded by a surprising number of
artists, and was apparently quite popular
in the late 20's. Here are releases I've
found listed on the internet; I have a
few of these in my collection, but would
love to hear more. Click the to hear what I have...
Harris (Irving Kaufman), (Columbia 569D, 1/29/26)
Also, an artist named Jon Strongbow recorded a song by that title on his 1989 cassette "A Normal Sort of Guy." It's not the same song, though interesting.
Kaufman (center), who also
Below, Australian pressing, 1926, Bert Firman's Cabaret Novelty Orchestra
Below, whoever did the 45rpm
Below, obscure UK release from around 1990
Australian sheet music
And, it's interesting that the sheet
music below has identical artwork as the one printed in
And, the photo behind the photo has a pic has different singer...
and below, two more.
Below, there were even piano rolls of the song.
Below, click images for modern versions, by Richard Halpern & Frederick Hodges
Below, instrumental piano roll version
Below, Marc Almond included the song on his 2008 CD/DVD, with additional lyrics
Click for this page on related information
And the song
is also found on this 2007 various artists comp,