Angel Eyes

Learn How To Play Angel Eyes

Chords and strumming

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Angel Eyes chords and strumming


Angel Eyes is a slightly less known jazz standard, sung by Frank Sinatra among others. It was composed by Matt Dennis back in 1953.

The verse is at home in Aeolian. Using an almost chromatic descending bass line, it moves Am – Am/G – Am/F – Am/E – Am/Eb.

This is a very sad movement, so when moving to the bridge’s II – V – I, we get a serious dose of harmonic release.

The bridge section is actually in a new key and there’s plenty more to investigate when it comes to Angel Eyes chord progression.

I’ll tell you all about it in the master course.

Moving a progression around the fretboard

Being in Am, it is certainly very tempting to use the open position chords as you see first in the video lesson.

The bass line really shines this way but staying down there for the whole song may become a bit boring.

The second time the verse appears we play around fret five instead using an Am chord in an Em shape. Still, applying the bass line.

This way, when you go back to the open position Am, it sounds even bigger!

By using different positions of the same chord progression like this we can create natural dynamics in any song.

Angel Eyes in the guitar course

This is a jazz standard and the whole point of a jazz standard is that you can play the chords, the melody as well as improvise over it.

When you take the master guitar course we do just that by:

  • Understanding the chord progression
  • Identifying the active modes
  • Playing the vocal melody
  • Developing the melody
  • Improvising over all sections

Only by going this far will you fully understand how Angel Eyes is constructed.

Only by digging this deep can you learn from the song.

Related Pages


Angel EyesTry to think that love’s not around
But it’s uncomfortably near
My old heart ain’t gaining no ground
Because my angel eyes ain’t here

Go to Angel Eyes lyrics.

Frank Sinatra

frank-sinatra-thumbFrank’s legacy might best be summed up by Stephen Holden who wrote for the 1983 Rolling Stone Record Guide:

“Frank Sinatra’s voice is pop music history. Like Presley and Dylan – Sinatra will last indefinitely. He virtually invented modern pop song phrasing.”

Go to Frank Sinatra biography.

Matt Dennis

matt-dennis-thumbBeing exposed to music from an early age with his parents both being professional musicians, Matt Dennis took to the piano, singing and arranging like a fish to water!

Performing with his family from an early age in the Vaudeville tradition, Matt got to know American showbiz before he even learned to read or write.

Go to Matt Dennis biography.


Learning how to play guitar is best done through playing and learning from songs.

The master songs require you to extend chords and fully understand the modal scales. This will be revolutionary for your understanding of the guitar fret board.

Go to Master guitar course.


Learn how to play famous songs.

Angel Eyes, Dream A Little Dream Of Me, I Wish, Tenderness, and Why Don’t You Do Right?.

Go to Master acoustic songs.

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