Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue – Crystal Gayle | Top 40 Chart Performance, Story and Song Meaning

Chart Performance: Pop (#2 for 3 weeks); 1977

Story Behind The Song By Ed Osborne

Although songwriter Richard Leigh had hit the heights with Crystal Gayle in 1976 when she took his song, I’ll Get Over You, to the top of the country chart, the hits didn’t keep on comin’.

He worked on song after song while his brown-eyed canine companion, Amanda, looked on. One night Richard played producer Allen Reynolds a song he’d earmarked for Shirley Bassey called Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue.

Reynolds immediately picked up on the tune’s potential, and scheduled a recording session with Crystal at the mic. The musicians nailed down the arrangement, the engineer rolled tape, and one take later Reynolds had his final master.

Brown Eyes raced to the top of the country chart and crossed over to pop, becoming Crystal’s biggest hit ever and giving Leigh Country Music Association and Grammy awards for Best Song. Ironically, Crystal’s first single was another blue-eye-themed record called I’ve Cried (The Blue Right Out Of My Eyes), written by her sister, Loretta Lynn.

This content and all Song Meaning articles were created and written by Top 40 Contributing Editor Ed Osborne. © 2024 Ed Osborne. All Rights Reserved. In addition to these song meaning articles, Ed has written our “Year in Music 1960s-1990s” articles.

Produced by:

  • Allen Reynolds

Lyrics Written by:

  • Richard Leigh


  • In 1978, “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue” won Gayle a Grammy Award for Best Female Country Vocal Performance