Tears in Heaven

My SLS entry for this week is Tears in Heaven, a song by Eric Clapton and Will Jennings, written about the death of Clapton’s four-year-old son, Conor. One of the most tear-jerking songs ever…

Theme: Tribute songs that were written in memory of someone

On 20 March 1991, Clapton’s 4-year-old son Conor died after falling from the 53rd-floor window of a New York City apartment belonging to Conor’s mother’s friend. After isolating himself for a period, Clapton began working again, writing music for the film Rush (1991). He dealt with the grief of his son’s death by cowriting “Tears in Heaven” for the soundtrack with Will Jennings. In an interview in 1992, Clapton said of the song, “It was in the back of my head but it didn’t really have a reason for being until I was scoring this movie … then it sort of had a reason to be. And it is a little ambiguous because it could be taken to be about Conor but it also is meant to be part of the film.”

In an interview with Daphne Barak, Clapton said: “I almost subconsciously used music for myself as a healing agent, and lo and behold, it worked… I have got a great deal of happiness and a great deal of healing from music.” Jennings said:

[Clapton] said to me, “I want to write a song about my boy.” Eric had the first verse of the song written, which, to me, is all the song, but he wanted me to write the rest of the verse lines and the release (“Time can bring you down, time can bend your knees…”), even though I told him that it was so personal he should write everything himself. He told me that he had admired the work I did with Steve Winwood and finally there was nothing else but to do as he requested, despite the sensitivity of the subject. This is a song so personal and so sad that it is unique in my experience of writing songs.

WIKIPEDIA
Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?
I must be strong
And carry on
‘Cause I know, I don’t belong
Here in heaven
Would you hold my hand
If I saw you in heaven?
Would you help me stand
If I saw you in heaven?
I’ll find my way
Through night and day
‘Cause I know, I just can’t stay
Here in heaven
Time can bring you down
Time can bend your knees
Time can break your heart
Have you begging please
Begging please
Beyond the door
There’s peace, I’m sure
And I know there’ll be no more
Tears in heaven
Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would it be the same
If I saw you in heaven?
I must be strong
And carry on
‘Cause I know, I don’t belong
Here in heaven
‘Cause I know, I don’t belong
Here in heaven
Thank you

The song appeared on the 1991 Rush film soundtrack. In January 1992, Clapton performed the song in front of an audience at Bray Studios, Berkshire, England for MTV Unplugged, with the recording appearing on his Unplugged album.

The song was Clapton’s best-selling single in the United States and reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100. In the United Kingdom, where Clapton is from, it reached number five on the UK Singles Chart, and also charted in the top 10 in more than twenty nations around the world. It won three Grammy Awards for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, Song of the Year, and Record of the Year. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked “Tears in Heaven” 362nd on its list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”.

14 thoughts on “Tears in Heaven

    1. Thanks for passing by, Jay… it’s truly a great song!
      Although the first one that came to my mind was Think of Laura… I chose this instead being that I love this song very much ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. It is a great song, Janice. I remember starting to learn how to play it soon after its’ release. I would practice it at work for 30 mins each day before anyone came in. I still play it now. Of course, I don’t even have one tenth of the talent that you would find in Eric’s right pinky fingernail, but it’s recognisable and sometimes Linda sings along. She’s a great Clapton fan.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have learned and loved this song when I was in high school (without knowing the story behind it) — it was so powerful and heartbreaking… learning its background made it even more heartbreaking… but it’s really a great song! Your household is like ours (my original household) hehe, we used to sing songs as my dad plays the tunes… your kids will forever remember that fun family experience, Sean…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I really appreciate your comments re my family and your family, Janis. I do get emotional when I play Tears in Heaven, it means something. After we all saw Bohemian Rhapsody together, I got out the guitar and we went through a few of Queen’s songs. It was an awesome moment!

        Like

  2. Balita ko, gustong gamitin yan sa palabas ni Paolo Contis at Alessandra de Rossi pero hindi daw pumayag si Mr. Clapton dahil masyado daw personal ang kantang ito.

    Di ko alam kung san ko nakuha ang impormasyong ito haha

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Stine Writing Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s