Color Him Father
|"Color Him Father"|
|Single by The Winstons|
|Songwriter(s)||Richard Lewis Spencer|
|The Winstons singles chronology|
It was released in 1969, and reached number 2 on the R&B charts and number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 that same year. Its composer, Richard Lewis Spencer, won a Grammy Award for Best R&B song in 1970.
"Color Him Father" is one of the best known songs by The Winstons. It was released as a single, and the B-side contained an instrumental track titled "Amen, Brother". "Amen, Brother" contains what has now become one of the most heavily sampled drum breaks in the history of electronic music, especially jungle and breakbeat hardcore. This break has become known as the Amen Break.
"Color Him Father" is an unabashedly sentimental song in which a boy expresses his love for his stepfather, a hardworking and generous man who married his widowed mother, who had seven children, and embraced them as his own after her first husband was "killed in the war." ("She said she thought that she could never love again/And then there he stood with that big, wide grin.") The song's lyrics resonated strongly with the public in 1969, the height of the Vietnam War. The word "color," in the song, means "label" or "call" and follows the 'color' motif set in Barbra Streisand's 1963 release of "My Coloring Book." The song served as a major musical inspiration for the 2016 track "Celebrate" by Anderson .Paak.
- Linda Martell had a Top 25 country hit in 1969 with her version of the song.
- Lorene Mann released 'Color Him Father' on her 1969 RCA album 'A Mann Called Lorene'
- O C Smith included the song on his 1969 Columbia album 'O.C. Smith at Home'
- Bobby Womack recorded the song and released it on his 1994 album 'Resurrection'
- Keb' Mo' covered the song on his 2001 album Big Wide Grin