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Home » Songs » 70s Music » Eric Clapton Songs » Tears in Heaven – Eric Clapton

Tears in Heaven – Eric Clapton

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“Tears in Heaven” by Eric Clapton, an acoustic cover by Mike Massé

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Liner Notes:

I consider this song to be hallowed ground. As a piece of music, it’s beautiful, haunting, and even uplifting somehow. As an expression of grief, it’s devastating. I approach this song with sincere reverence for the very real pain felt by very real people. I didn’t know little Conor, but as a father, I know the innocence and purity of a little boy his age and how precious those little souls are when they’re with you in your home, in your life. And I know the pain of nearly losing a child.  I am grateful for not having to experience the actual grief of losing one.  [If you don’t know what inspired the lyrics, Google it at your own risk, and prepare yourself to cry your eyes out, and prepare your heart to feel the pain of a deeply wounded artist.]

When I perform this work, I try to wall off some of my own emotions and not think too hard on the song’s meaning and origin, lest I break down mid-song. I can’t imagine how hard it is for Eric Clapton to perform this. After everything we went through with our own little Noah, I feel a type of kinship with the pain and fear expressed in this song, but I don’t pretend to fathom even a glimpse of the heartbreak and loss that brought Mr. Clapton to write this modern masterpiece. I hope my rendition will remind you of how you felt the first time you heard this song, knowing what it was about. And maybe help you feel connected to your own kids and/or family—every moment you have with them. For me, these quiet moments of extreme empathy for another’s loss make me feel more connected to those around me, family and strangers alike. They make me feel more human. They make me want to be a better human. What more could we want from art? What more could art want from us?

Love,
Mike

Tears in Heaven – Eric Clapton Chords/Lyrics

Tears in Heaven
Eric Clapton
Key: A

A E/G#  F#m F#m/E
    
D/F# E7sus4 E7  A

Verse:
A           E/G#    F#m F#m/E
  Would you know my name
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven
A          E      F#m F#m/E
  Would it be the same
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven

Chorus:
F#m             C#/F
  I must be strong
A7/E        F#7
  and carry on
          Bm7                      E7
Cause I know I don't belong
E7             A
  here in heaven

(repeat intro riff)
A E/G#  F#m F#m/E
    
D/F# E7sus4 E7  A
    
Verse:
A              E/G#    F#m F#m/E
  Would you hold my hand
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven
A           E       F#m F#m/E
  Would you help me stand
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven

Chorus:
F#m             C#/F A7/E                F#7
I'll find my way    through night and day
        Bm7                       E7
Cause I know I just can't stay
           A
Here in heaven

Bridge:
C          G/B             Am
  Time can bring you down
         D/F#      G   D/F#  Em  D/F#  G
Time can bend your knee
C           G/B              Am
  Time can break your heart
         D/F#    G
Have you begging please
D/F#            E
   Begging please

(repeat intro riff)
A E/G#  F#m F#m/E
    
D/F# E7sus4 E7  A
    
Verse:
A              E/G#    F#m F#m/E
  Would you know my name
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven
A          E      F#m F#m/E
  Would it be the same
D/F#   A/E           E
  If I saw you in heaven

Chorus:
F#m             C#/F
  Beyond the door
A7/E                F#7
  There's peace I'm sure
      Bm7                      E7
And I know there'll be no more
         A
Tears in heaven

       Bm7                       E7
Yes, I know there'll be no more
         A
Tears in heaven
(Songwriters: Eric Patrick Clapton / Will Jennings)

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