Tears In Heaven Guitar Lesson – Eric Clapton – Acoustic

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Released in the early nineties, “Tears In Heaven” not only became the most successful single of Eric Clapton’s career, but also one of the most beloved acoustic guitar songs of all time.

In this Tears in Heaven guitar lesson video I will demonstrate how to play all the fingerstyle guitar parts, fills and solo.

The version of “Tears In Heaven” that I am working from here is the live version from his massive selling Unplugged album.

Even though there are two guitars playing on the track, I think you can very comfortably and convincingly play Tears In Heaven with just one guitar. I will demonstrate how to put all of those guitar parts together in the video lesson.

I am using a nylon string acoustic like he does on the recording, but as I mention in the video, don’t let that stop you if you don’t own a nylon string acoustic of your own. Tears in Heaven can be played on any guitar you choose and still sound great.

For the actual playing of the song, Eric Clapton uses a pretty standard fingerstyle technique throughout. If you don’t have any experience with fingerstyle guitar it may take a little getting used to but will be well worth the effort.

I suggest first getting the chords down. That will enable you to then focus on the fingerstyle patterns with minimal distraction from the fret hand. Eric Clapton uses one main fingerstyle pattern throughout much of the song with just slight variations on it. The bridge section being the only exception.

I prefer playing “Tears In Heaven” by sticking with the chord progressions until one of the four main fills comes along. I then jump into that fill and as soon as it is finished jump right back into the chord progression at whatever point you are now at. It create a very convincing one guitar version of the song.

Even the solo can be played that way if you wish. It will take a bit more effort, but at the end of every phrase in the solo you have time to jump back and play more of the chord progression.

So stick with it and you will be playing this gorgeous and haunting smash hit in no time! Enjoy!

Video Rating: / 5


  1. is it just me who would prefer the fretboard camera to be upside down so it looks like you're looking at your guitar?

  2. Thank you Carl 🙂 you're best teacher.

  3. Thank you a lot for the lesson !!! :D

  4. keanu reeves

  5. Tabs please??

  6. Just want to acknowledge that this song lesson mysteriously appeared on my computer que over night….on MEMORIAL DAY…for all my LOVED ONES on the other side, I LOVE YOU FOREVER….I know there will be No Tears in Heaven… Thank You <3

  7. dustyrusty musty

    I am now nailing this song. I couldn't have done without you. Thanks so much.

  8. muy buena lección. soy de Perú, me gustaria saber que marca es la guitarra, me agrada ese sonido. saludos, agradeceria respuesta alguna.

  9. Thank you really much ^_^

  10. what is the structure of the song?

  11. dustyrusty musty

    I wouldn't mind joining your pay site but you don't seem to cater much to acoustic. So heavily laden with rock. But I do appreciate the fine lessons like this on youtube. Thank you so much for sharing.

  12. You have the best lessons on youtube

  13. You have a great teaching style!! The views you give and different angles allow for the most efficient way to learn the piece!! Thank you for uploading !! Keep up the great work!!

  14. Yella Stylinson

    I am going to play this for the best dog I've ever had who just passed away last november :)

  15. Anonymous ?????

    this will make everyone at the funeral cry…im gonna learn it!

  16. I'm about to play this song for a very good friend of mine who just passed away.. His funeral is monday and I'll be practicing as much as I can.. Thank you Carl..

  17. Welcome to Ozzero

    Great Lesson!!

  18. nice fingerstyle lesson was easy with u teaching it . thanks a lot dude. when's the second part of welcome to the jungle being done. anywayz thx

  19. Gurpreet Singh Gulati

    thank you so much..this is the most detailed as well as complete lesson for this song i have come across on tube..thanks much appreciate.

  20. cool…tqvm sir

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