If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears

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If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears
Studio album by The Mamas & the Papas
Released March 1966
Recorded 1965 – 1966
Genre Pop rock, folk rock, psychedelic pop, sunshine pop
Length 33:42
Label Dunhill
Producer Lou Adler
The Mamas & the Papas chronology
If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears
The Mamas & the Papas
Singles from If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears
  1. "Go Where You Wanna Go"
    Released: 1965
  2. "California Dreamin'"
    Released: September 1965
  3. "Monday, Monday"
    Released: March 1966
  4. "Do You Wanna Dance?"
    Released: 1968

If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears is the 1966 debut album by The Mamas & the Papas (spelled "The Mama's and the Papa's" on the cover). In 2003, it was ranked #127[1] on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

This album is included in its entirety on All the Leaves are Brown, a retrospective compilation of the band's first four albums and various singles, The Mamas and the Papas Complete Anthology (4CD Box).

A remastered Mono CD and Vinyl release is available from Sundazed Records.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[2]
Rolling Stone 4.5/5 stars[3]

"[A] genuinely new sound"[2] represents the general reception given to the album by both the public and the critics.

Album covers[edit]

If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears is one of the first albums to have several different covers. The first cover (shown at the right) featured the group in a bathroom sitting in a bathtub with a toilet in the corner. The album with this cover was pulled from stores after the toilet was declared indecent. The remaining covers featuring the toilet have since become collector's items. A second album cover was then released with a scroll over the toilet listing the presence of "California Dreamin'" on the album. Two more songs were later added to the scroll/box over the toilet. Still later, a Gold Record Award blurb was added (in black) to the left of the group. Finally, a later album cover was released with a closely cropped shot of the band surrounded by a black border that removed any hint that the picture was taken in a bathroom.

Original track listing[edit]

Side one[edit]

  1. "Monday, Monday" (John Phillips) – 3:28
  2. "Straight Shooter" (J. Phillips) – 2:58
  3. "Got a Feelin'" (J. Phillips, Denny Doherty) – 2:53
  4. "I Call Your Name" (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) – 2:38
  5. "Do You Wanna Dance?" (Bobby Freeman) – 3:00
  6. "Go Where You Wanna Go" (J. Phillips) – 2:29

Side two[edit]

  1. "California Dreamin'" (J. Phillips, Michelle Phillips) – 2:42
  2. "Spanish Harlem" (Jerry Leiber, Phil Spector) – 3:22
  3. "Somebody Groovy" (J. Phillips) - 3:16
  4. "Hey Girl" (J. Phillips, M. Phillips) – 2:30
  5. "You Baby" (Steve Barri, P. F. Sloan) – 2:22
  6. "The 'In' Crowd" (Billy Page) – 3:12


Chart positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1966 Billboard Pop Albums (Billboard 200)[4] 1


  1. ^ Levy, Joe; Steven Van Zandt (2006) [2005]. "127 | If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears - The Mamas and the Papas". Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time (3rd ed.). London: Turnaround. ISBN 1-932958-61-4. OCLC 70672814. Retrieved 27 May 2005. 
  2. ^ a b Eder, Bruce. If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears at AllMusic. Retrieved 13 April 2006.
  3. ^ Sheffield, Rob (April 15, 1999). "Rolling Stone Library: The Mamas & The Papas If You Can Believe Your Eyes & Ears > Review". Rolling Stone (810). p. 111. Archived from the original on 20 June 2008. Retrieved 12 January 2007. 
  4. ^ If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears - The Mamas & the Papas > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums at AllMusic. Retrieved 23 April 2008.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Ballads of The Green Berets by SSgt. Barry Sadler
Billboard 200 number-one album
May 21–27, 1966
Succeeded by
What Now My Love
by Herb Alpert and His Tijuana Brass