“Mothers Talk” is a 1984 song by the British band Tears for Fears.
Written by Roland Orzabal and Ian Stanley and sung by Orzabal, it was the band’s seventh single release (the first to be taken from their second album Songs from the Big Chair (1985)) and fifth UK Top 40 chart hit. The song was released six months in advance of the album and showcased the band’s edgier sound, as compared to their debut LP The Hurting (1983). It was also a moderate success internationally.
“Mothers Talk” was written in 1983 and was first publicly performed during the band’s late 1983 tour. In early 1984, the band went into the studio to record the song as their next single, though the recording sessions with their new producer Jeremy Green did not work out as planned and the recording was scrapped. The band’s previous producer, Chris Hughes, was then brought back into the fold and the song was re-recorded and finally released as a single in August 1984. Hughes stayed on with the band to record their second album, Songs from the Big Chair.
Along with its B-side, “Empire Building”, “Mothers Talk” was one of the first Tears for Fears songs to demonstrate a creative use of sampling. The strings at the beginning of the song were culled from a Barry Manilow record, while the drum sample around which “Empire Building” is built was lifted from the Simple Minds song “Today I Died Again”.
‘Mothers Talk” would be released in three different mixes, the most common being the ‘US Remix” and the “Beat Of The Drum Mix” which both appeared on the Deluxe Edition of “Songs From The Big Chair”.
To date, the only CD release of the Mothers Talk “Extended Version” has been on Retro:Active6, a CD series that is essential for collectors of rare 12″ mixes.
Mothers Talk (Extended Version) 6:15
Empire Building 2:49