“Different For Girls”
Dierks Bentley with Elle King
Written by J.T. Harding and Shane McAnally
“Different For Girls” is based on the gender stereotypes of yore. Guys push down their feelings and get drunk. Girls can’t do that because they’re too sensitive. They just sit home and cry instead.
Confederate Railroad, hardly known for their progressivism on gender, launched their career almost a quarter century ago with “She Took it Like a Man,” a song that subverted those stereotypes. It was pretty clever in 1992, when the premise of “Different For Girls” might have been accepted without much thought.
In 2016, it just leaves me thinking that everyone involved needs to listen to a Miranda Lambert record. She’s done everything that supposedly only guys do, and then some.
See, it is different for girls, which is why it’s better to let them tell their own stories rather than speak for them so condescendingly. “Different For Girls” attempts to be more sympathetic toward the female experience than the bro-country, bare feet on the dashboard, cut-off shorts nonsense that pollutes the radio these days. But it’s no less a two-dimensional approach. Bentley just chooses to idealize rather than blatantly objectify.