Is That a Tear

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"Is That a Tear"
Single by Tracy Lawrence
from the album Time Marches On
Released November 26, 1996[1]
Format CD single, Cassette single
Recorded 1995
Genre Country
Length 3:18
Label Atlantic
Writer(s) John Jarrard
Kenny Beard
Producer(s) Tracy Lawrence
Flip Anderson
Tracy Lawrence singles chronology
"Stars over Texas"
"Is That a Tear"
"Better Man, Better Off"

"Is That a Tear" is a song written by John Jarrard and Kenny Beard, and recorded by American country music artist Tracy Lawrence. It was released on November 26, 1996 as the fourth and final single from his album Time Marches On. It peaked at number two on the United States Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, while it was a number-one hit in Canada.[2]


"Is That a Tear" is a mid-tempo song prominently featuring the fiddle and steel guitar. It begins when the narrator finds an unexpected message on his phone from an estranged lover. In the message, she says she's sorry she missed him and that she's doing fine. He plays the message over and over again, swearing he heard sadness and regret, or "a tear" in her voice. The song ends with the narrator contemplating whether he should call her back.

Music video[edit]

The music video was directed by Marc Ball, and is one of many music videos Lawrence filmed in the mid 1990s that featured a "quantum leap" theme (with Marc Ball as director). Beginning with the ending of the video for "Texas Tornado," it features Lawrence driving a taxicab, and helping a woman follow a group of men for an undisclosed purpose, It was the last video to use Tracy Lawrence's trademark mullet and mustache, he used it from 1991 to 1996.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1996-1997) Peak
Canada Country Tracks (RPM)[3] 1
US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles (Billboard)[4] 4
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[5] 2

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1997) Position
Canada Country Tracks (RPM)[6] 30
US Country Songs (Billboard)[7] 36
Preceded by
by John Michael Montgomery
RPM Country Tracks
number-one single

February 10, 1997
Succeeded by
"Everybody Knows"
by Trisha Yearwood


  1. ^
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2008). Hot Country Songs 1944 to 2008. Record Research, Inc. ISBN 0-89820-177-2. 
  3. ^ "Top RPM Country Tracks: Issue 9810." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. February 10, 1997. Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  4. ^ "Tracy Lawrence Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 for Tracy Lawrence.
  5. ^ "Tracy Lawrence Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot Country Songs for Tracy Lawrence.
  6. ^ "RPM Top 100 Country Tracks of 1997". RPM. December 15, 1997. Retrieved July 17, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Best of 1997: Country Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 1997. Retrieved July 17, 2013. 

External links[edit]