Doctor My Eyes

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"Doctor My Eyes"
German cover
Single by Jackson Browne
from the album Jackson Browne
B-side "Looking Into You"
Released 1972
Format 7"
Recorded 1971
Genre Rock
Length 3:19, 2:57 (Single)
Label Asylum Records
Writer(s) Jackson Browne
Producer(s) Jackson Browne
Richard Sanford Orshoff
Jackson Browne singles chronology
"Doctor My Eyes"
(1972)
"Rock Me On the Water"
(1972)

"Doctor My Eyes" is a 1972 song written and performed by Jackson Browne and included on his debut album Jackson Browne. Featuring a combination of an upbeat piano riff coupled, somewhat ironically, with lyric about feeling world-weary, the song was a surprise hit, reaching #8 on the Billboard Hot 100 in spring 1972, after debuting on the chart at #80. Browne would not see the chart's Top 10 again until 1982's soundtrack hit "Somebody's Baby", although "Running on Empty" just missed the Top 10, reaching #11.[1][2][3] Billboard ranked it as the No. 92 song for 1972.[4]

"Doctor My Eyes" became a concert mainstay for Browne, and was included on both his later compilation albums. A live version can be found on the 1996 Australia CD release Best of... Live, a double-set with Looking East, and the 1997 Japan 2-CD release of Best of... Live, coupled with The Next Voice You Hear: The Best of Jackson Browne.[5]

Jesse Ed Davis played the electric guitar while David Crosby and Graham Nash sang backing vocals.[6]

History[edit]

William Ruhlmann on Allmusic.com elaborated on the development of the song: "Browne first recorded a demo of 'Doctor My Eyes' for the Criterion Music publishing company in early 1971, and despite its striking imagery and carefully crafted writing, it was a bleak song... By the time he came to record the song for his first album in the summer of 1971, however, Browne had revised the lyric, tossing out the most pessimistic lines. Now, 'Doctor My Eyes' was the statement of a man who had stoically endured life's hardships, but having done so, now worried that he had been rendered unable to feel anything. It still wasn't an optimistic song, but the unhappy ending had been rendered ambiguous." Ruhlmann addresses the final recorded version's "paradoxical sense" between the music and the lyrics: "Working with other musicians, Browne drastically altered the sound of the song on record. A lively 4/4 beat, played on drums and congas, and supported by piano, set up a catchy underlying riff before the lyrics even began. Browne's singing was supported by David Crosby's harmony, giving the lyrics an emotional edge. On the whole, the arrangement and performance worked against the still desperate message contained in the words. "[2]

Reception[edit]

Jeff Walker, in his review of Browne's debut album for Phonograph Record magazine in 1972, wrote that "Doctor My Eyes" is one of a number of tracks on the album that "deal with a spiritual search; no preaching, no conclusions, just searching."[7]

Ruhlmann on Allmusic called it "a rollicking pop/rock song about being almost terminally burnt out."[2]

Other versions[edit]

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1972) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 8
U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary 18

References[edit]

  1. ^ Billboard.com. Jackson Browne Chart History. Accessed July 18, 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d Ruhlmann, William. Allmusic.com, "Doctor My Eyes" Song Review. Accessed June 4, 2010.
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel. Billboard Hot 100 Charts - The Seventies. Wisconsin: Record Research, 1990.
  4. ^ Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1972
  5. ^ Paris, Russ. JACKSON BROWNE COMPLETE DISCOGRAPHY
  6. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/song/doctor-my-eyes-t2270530
  7. ^ Walker, Jeff. Phonograph Record magazine, Review of Jackson Browne, April 1972.
  8. ^ "Rivage overview". Allmusic.com. 

External links[edit]