Tears in Heaven.
“Tears in Heaven” is a ballad written and performed by Eric Clapton about the pain he felt following the 1991 death of his four-year-old son, Connor, who fell from a 53rd-story window in his mother’s New York City condominium. By all accounts, the death was simply a tragic accident, and Clapton was distraught for months afterwards.
Clapton wrote the song with Will Jennings, who was reluctant at first to help him with such a personal song. The song was initially featured on the soundtrack to the film Rush, and it won three Grammy awards for Song of the Year, Record of the Year and Male Pop Vocal Performance in 1993. It was also included on Clapton’s Grammy award-winning album, Unplugged. It is #353 on Rolling Stone’s Top 500 Songs.
“Eric and I were engaged to write a song for a movie called Rush. We wrote a song called ‘Help Me Up’ for the end of the movie… then Eric saw another place in the movie for a song and he 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.” – Will Jennings
Clapton stopped playing it in 2004, as well as the song “My Father’s Eyes.”
“I didn’t feel the loss anymore, which is so much a part of performing those songs. I really have to connect with the feelings that were there when I wrote them. They’re kind of gone and I really don’t want them to come back, particularly. My life is different now. They probably just need a rest and maybe I’ll introduce them for a much more detached point of view.”