Since I wrote about demons yesterday, it only seems fair to write about angels even if demons are more fun.
There are several songs titled Angel Eyes. I’m talking about the 1946 torch song written by Matt Dennis and Earl Brent. We specialize in torch songs during the Friday Cocktail Hour, after all. I’ve always thought that sad songs are the best songs. This is a time for sad songs, y’all.
First up is Nat King Cole with a version arranged and conducted by the great Billy May:
Friday Cocktail Hour regular Ella Fitzgerald often said that Angel Eyes was her favorite song. She proves it here:
The brilliant and irascible New Orleans pianist James Booker recorded an instrumental take on Angel Eyes in 1982:
The Chairman of the Board often closed his live shows with Angel Eyes, which he called the “ultimate saloon song.” The last line suited his sense of drama, “Excuse me while I disappear.”
Here’s the original studio recording arranged and conducted by Nelson Riddle.
I made a big deal out of Sinatra performing Angel Eyes so here’s a live version from 1974. His voice cracks but the introduction is hilarious:
At the beginning, I mentioned other songs of the same title. Here’s my favorite of the bunch:
Hiatt’s Angel Eyes was also covered by the Jeff Healey Band but it’s not torchy enough for the Friday Cocktail Hour. But this totally unrelated song is torchier than hell in a prog-rock kinda way:
That’s it for this week. Pour yourself a drink and relax. Excuse me while I disappear.