What does Aretha Franklin mean by 'Take care, TCB' in 'Respect'

Respect by Aretha Franklin - what the hell is she saying, "Take care, TCB'? Oxford has your answer.

The meaning of ‘TCB’

See if you can’t supply the missing part of this lyric:
R-E-S-P-E-C-T,
Find out what it means to me,
R-E-S-P-E-C-T,
____ ____, ___
Transcriptions of this mondegreen vary. Some people hear “take out the T-C-P”, which sounds plausible until I try to make sense of ‘R-E-S-E’. A different camp suggest “take care (of the) T.C.P.” and argue that T.C.P. stands for “the coloured people”, referring to the African-American Civil Rights Movement. Much as that interpretation appeals, there’s no truth to it.
Which words did Lady Soul sing then? The line missing above is “Take care, TCB!” It features the classic late ’60s lingo TCB, which expands to “take care of business”. The OED defines this phrase as “to do something in an effective or energetic manner; to take action to good effect” and records the initialism in publication as far back as 1969:
TCB caught a huge break in 1968 when Motown organized a television special called, you guessed it, ‘TCB’. The program starred a few of Aretha’s contemporaries, the Temptations and Diana Ross & the Supremes, performing a musical revue. People all over America tuned in to watch the headlining acts cover Aretha’s “Respect” (and various other hits).Legend has it that this hour of entertainment inspired Elvis to adopt “taking care of business” as his mantra and designate his backing musicians the TCB Band.
Refer to the OED’s history of TCB above and you’ll see that, with our evidence of it in the Motown revue (1968) and Aretha’s line from “Respect” (1967), the term’s a few years older than we thought! Chalk up another antedating for Aretha, and keep an eye out for “Respect” lyrics in a future update!



Admit it - you thought Aretha Franklin wanted to get rid of PCP.

RIP AF - same day of death as Elvis Presley.

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