“Seein’ My Father in Me”
Written by Taylor Dunn and Paul Overstreet
Radio & Records
#1 (1 week)
March 9, 1990
For a few years, an unassuming songwriter became a chart-topping country artist.
The Road to No. 1
Paul Overstreet could’ve never sung a note and he still would’ve been an essential figure in country music during the mid-to-late eighties. He’d eventually pen more than two dozen top ten country hits, but his most important songs came along early: “On the Other Hand” and “Forever and Ever, Amen” (Randy Travis), “When You Say Nothing at All” (Keith Whitley), and “I Won’t Take Less Than Your Love” (Tanya Tucker).
That last record featured Overstreet as a guest vocalist, and its chart-topping success jumpstarted a solo career that had derailed after one album in 1982. Overstreet tested the waters as part of the trio Schuyler, Knobloch & Overstreet, which topped the charts with “Baby’s Got a New Baby” before Overstreet departed to focus on his solo efforts.
In 1988, his second solo album, Sowin’ Love, produced five hit singles that all charted in the top ten, the final of which reached the top of the Radio & Records chart in early 1990.
The No. 1
It’s hard to listen to “Seein’ My Father in Me” and not imagine Randy Travis singing it. It plays like a demo recorded for him, right down to Overstreet’s twangy stretching of the notes that mimics a Travis vocal.
It also has that sweet family-friendly innocence of Overstreet’s material, where parents are loving and dedicated and husbands eternally loyal. “Seein’ My Father in Me” is as gentle and pure a celebration of fatherhood as has ever been written, and along with its touching video, it represented changing views of masculinity and the new normal of fathers being loving, affectionate, and gentle with their children.
The Road From No. 1
Overstreet would keep the momentum going with his next single, which will be covered in this feature soon.
“Seein’ My Father in Me” gets a B+.
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