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It was her party, but what about Johnny?

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot

SOMEWHAT TJADED : Remember Lesley Gore‘s “It’s My Party (And I’ll Cry If I Want To)”? A #1 hit on the pop and R&B charts in 1963, it told of a teenager enjoying herself at her birthday party when her supposed boyfriend, Johnny, and a girl named Judy split at the same time. When they got back, Judy was wearing Johnny’s ring. Heartbroken, Lesley collapsed in tears (It WAS her party). Seems to me, though, if Lesley didn’t already have Johnny’s ring, he was free to give it to whomever he wished, no?

Contrary to what Tenafly’s native daughter may have believed, she and Johnny were apparently not an item. But, the smile on Judy’s face, according to Lesley, “was so mean” that she bawled like she’d just skinned her knee.

Bill & Lesley


Allow me to digress a moment: The year was 1963, JFK had just been assassinated, yet Lesley saw nothing wrong with throwing a party for herself and yukking it up with her goofball friends.

She cries over some imagined slight by a guy who is NOT her boyfriend yet cannot imagine herself grieving for the fallen President or the country. Where were those tears, Lesley? Where were they?


A few months later, a sequel to “It’s My Party” was issued. This song was titled “Judy’s Turn To Cry.” Lesley and her loser friends are still at her party. And instead of playing gracious hostess and entertaining her guests, she’s still fuming about this imaginary loss. There she was, wailing away in a corner, refusing to talk to anyone, while Johnny and Judy are rolling around on a couch.

So, Lesley, in a fit of blind anger, grabs “some other guy” and kisses him. This shows how pathetic Lesley really is. She had so few real friends that she had to invite perfect strangers to her party. She doesn’t even know this poor slob’s name.

Johnny, after giving Judy a chance to come up for air, sees this kiss and explodes in a hellish rage. He leaps up off the couch and pummels this unsuspecting (and innocent, by the way) guy until he’s semi-comatose on the floor, bloodied beyond recognition.

Lesley, of course, made not one move to help the victim. Instead she came to the twisted conclusion that Johnny assaulted her guest “cos’ he still loves me, that’s why….”

Well, all right, then….



Johnny is, at least, bi-polar and might even be paranoid-schizophrenic. These day s he would be the guy with the “roofies” in his pocket, telling every hottie he runs into that he loves her.

There were no further episodes to the saga. Lesley Gore‘s next hit, after getting Johnny back, was “You Don‘t Own Me,“ which could imply that, after all the drama, Johnny was just a possessive jerk.

My guess, however, is that Johnny knocked Lesley up, they got married, and he was drafted. Johnny got his gun and was sent to Vietnam, where he was shot by his own troops.

Lesley, meanwhile, gained 130 pounds, went on welfare and raised a fatherless child who eventually got sent to prison for burning down a day-care center.

The only clear winners here were Judy and “Mr. Some-Other-Guy.” They have no idea how close they came to getting involved with two of the biggest psychos to ever come down the pop music pike.

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