Angel Eyes (1953 song)


Angel Eyes (1953 song)

"Angel Eyes" is a 1953 popular song composed by Matt Dennis, with lyrics by Earl Brent. It was introduced in the 1953 film, "Jennifer".

The composition

Angel Eyes is in the form AABA. The first and the second A sections are almost identical, with only a few minor variations. The composition has a complex harmonic structure throughout. The II - V - I minor and major progressions are employed frequently throughout the piece. The A sections are in the C minor key. It starts with a C minor, D major 7 and G major 7 progression. Over the D major 7 there is an F# in the melody (the major third to the D major chord). It is a tritone in the context of the c minor tonic. This interval is used throughout the song. Another tritone is the diminished fifth in the Dm7_5 chord but it fits so well into the harmonic context of the c minor key that it is hardly recognized as a dissonant interval.The c minor then shift chromatically to the Bridge which begins with a B-flat minor and then leads over an E-flat major to the new tonic, A-flat major.

Because of its colourful harmonic changes "Angel Eyes" is a very popular jazz standard which has inspired many original interpretations. Several performers have recorded different versions of the song, including Bill Henderson, Don Ellis, Kenny Burrell, Pat Metheny, Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and Duke Ellington.

Recorded versions

*The Four Freshmen (on their biggest hit album "Four Freshmen and Five Trombones" from the mid-1950s)
*Frank Sinatra - "Frank Sinatra Sings for Only the Lonely" (1958), "Sinatra at the Sands" (1966)
*Redhot & Blue, an a cappella group at Yale University, has recorded the song on four albums.
*Sting - on the "Leaving Las Vegas" soundtrack.
*Cheryl Bentyne - on Rob Wasserman's album "Duets" MCA Records 1988.
*Moe Koffman - on his rarest album "Devil's Brew"
*George Shearing - on his album "Favorite Things"the band is hosting a re tour in 2008 in New Brightn
*Angela Hagenbach - on her fourth album "Weaver of Dreams"


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