Every #1 Country Single of the Eighties: The Forester Sisters, “Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes”

“Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes”

The Forester Sisters

Written by Terry Skinner and JL Wallace

Radio & Records

#1 (1 week)

May 16, 1986


#1 (1 week)

June 21, 1986

This is the best single yet from the Forester Sisters, and that is entirely because of the production choices being stronger than they were on their previous hits.

The arrangement of “Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes” is organic and fiddle-laden, and the acoustic instrumentation complements the sisters’ harmonies instead of working against them.  Yes, everything about this is a retread of The Judds’ “Mama He’s Crazy,” but when it inspires a copycat record that strives to be on par with the original, the end result a net positive.

The song itself isn’t of the same caliber as “Mama He’s Crazy,” which had more effective character development and was better at making the conversation between mother and daughter sound like one between two adults.  “Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes” could be a song about true love, or it could be a prequel to “Walkaway Joe.”  The writers don’t give us enough information to know the difference.

But it’s still a winning performance from the quartet and unlike their earlier No. 1 hits, it can be played alongside the best records of the day and not sound out of place.

“Mama’s Never Seen Those Eyes” gets a B+.

Every No. 1 Single of the Eighties

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  1. …she seemed to have been one busy mama with those four, mrs. forester. them and the sweethearts of the rodeo – what terrific harmonies. made you kinda feel like a pig in mud.

  2. Honestly, can we just reflect on a time when a female quartet enjoyed enough radio support to successfully take their songs to the top of the charts. and compete with male groups like Alabama, the, Oak Ridge Boys, and yes, Exile.

    At the time, the success of their first three singles from their debut album was precedent setting and historically significant for a debut album.

    Inspired by pop acts like the Lennon Sisters, McGuire Sisters, the Andrews Sisters, and The Supremes, the Forester Sisters were country music pioneers.

    The sisters may have not been the most musically inspiring of acts but they do sound at their best here for the reasons Kevin identified. Its also worth noting they were their own musicians who could play the piano, clarinet, flute, organ, and guitar.

    Their warm harmonies still wonderfully soothe and comfort me.

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