Mama Sang a Song

Bill Anderson

About Mama Sang a Song

"Mama Sang a Song" is a country music song written and recorded by Bill Anderson. Released in 1962, this recitation — prominently featuring a backing choir singing Christian hymns — was Bill Anderson's first No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot C&W Sides chart that fall. The song spent seven non-consecutive weeks atop the chart, spanning from October 27 through December 22, and 27 weeks total in the country chart's top 40 from the summer of 1962 through early 1963.


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(God put a song in the heart of an angel and softly she sang it to me)
I get to thinking lots of times about back when I was a lad
Of the old homeplace where I grew up of the days both good and bad
My overalls were hand-me-downs my shoes were full of holes

I used to walk four miles to school every day through the rain the sleet and the cold
I've seen the nights when my daddy would cry
For the things that his family would need
But all he ever got was a badland farm and seven hungry mouths to feed

And yet and yet our homefire never flickered once
'Cause when all these things went wrong
Mama took the hymn book down and mama sang a song
(What a friend we have in Jesus)

I've been rocked to sleep many a night to the tune of What a Friend
And come morning Rock of Ages would wake me gently once again
And when daddy would reach up and he'd take the Bible down
And he'd read it read it loud and long

And I always felt that maybe our house was blessed
When daddy would say mama sing a song
Sister left home first I guess and then Bob and then Tommy and then Dan
By then dad's hair was turning white and I had to be mama's little man

But it seemed that as daddy's back grew weak my mother's faith just grew strong
And those were the greatest days of all when mama sang a song
(Rock of ages cleft for me let me hide myself in Thee)
I guess the house is still standing I don't get to go back much anymore

No voice is left to fill those halls and no steps to grace the floor
For you see my mother sings in heaven now around God's golden throne
But I'll always believe that this world is a better place
Because one time my mama sang a song (precious mem'ries flod my soul)

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Bill Anderson

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Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind

10 facts about this song

Genre and Release
"Mama Sang a Song" is a song within the country genre, written and performed by Bill Anderson. The song was released as a single in 1962.
Chart Performance
The song became Bill Anderson's second number-one hit on Billboard's Hot Country Singles charts in November 1962.
Album Inclusion
Although "Mama Sang a Song" was released as a single, it was later included as a track on Anderson's album entitled "Bill Anderson Sings Country Heart Songs."
The song was inspired by Anderson's own childhood memories, his mother used to sing for him when he was a child.
Lyrics Story
The lyrics tell a story about a family living in poverty, and how their mother singing songs helped them to cope with their difficult life circumstances.
Bill Anderson is not only the performer of the song, but also the writer, displaying his dual talent as a lyricist and a singer.
Grammy Nomination
"Mama Sang a Song" was nominated for the 1963 Grammy Award for Best Country & Western Recording.
Hit Cover Version
The song was covered by Walter Brennan in 1962 and his version reached number 38 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles chart, making it an unusual cross-genre success.
Cross-Generational Appeal
The nostalgic and emotional focus of the song resonated with fans of all ages, making the song appeal to a wide demographic.
"Mama Sang a Song" is considered one of Bill Anderson's signature songs and has come to be one of the classic hits within the realm of country music.

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    Mama Sang a Song

    112     3

    Top Hot 100 Songs 1962

    Billboard #89


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