The Mamas and the Papas
The Mamas and the Papas’ Southern California sound captured the spirit of the West Coast.
Their distinct voices and personalities blended together to form an extraordinary group that was more than the sum of its parts. The Mamas and the Papas had gorgeous, intricate arrangements that became emblematic of their time.
Shania Twain inducts The Mamas and the Papasat the 1998 Induction Ceremony
Shania Twain inducts The Mamas and the Papas00:02:30
The Mamas and the Papas acceptance speech00:03:29
The Mamas and the Papas perform "California Dreamin'"00:02:55
Hall of Fame Essay
“California Dreamin’.” Even now the phrase had the power to haunt.
Though a bit shopworn, co-opted by advertising sloganeers, it still evokes what it first suggested - an overpowering yearning, a dream from the depths of winter, of healing sunshine. And it’s impossible to hear the phrase without hearing the harmonies, soaring and wistful, of the Mamas and the Papas.
John Phillips wrote the song, as he did most of the quartet’s singles, but the sound is emphatically a group sound: John’s guitar backing the soprano of his wife Michelle, Denny Doherty’s lead tenor, the ripe alto of Cass Elliot, strongest of the group’s four singers.
Cass is sitting on top of that big full moon tonight looking down on these proceedings
Photography: Kevin Mazur, WireImage
Cleveland, Ohio 44114