SongWriting Analysis – The Eagles “Lyin Eyes”

This is my absolute favorite song in the world. In terms of songwriting and harmonies and pure awesomeness, you can’t get any better then this track right here.

It started out as a bar scene between a girl and an older gentlemen that Glenn Frey saw and him coming up with the line ” Look at her, she can’t even hide those lyin eyes“, it quickly became the perfect example of what a song should be.

The theme being “Love Sucks” supported by the “Lyin Eyes” title.

Now what questions does this raise?

who’s lying? why is she lying? What is she lying about?

A trademark of a well written song is one that has a well defined story development.  Stuff happens in this song. There’s a plot! There’s a city girl that’s aware of her feminine powers, but who feels unloved.

Her husband’s not taking care of her, either emotionally or sexually. So she says she’s chilling with her friend, but her guy know what’s up. And he doesn’t care.

The second verse is all about the woman wooing some guy then leaving him.

The third verse is all about her feeling guilty.

The three verses have a beginning, middle and an end. There’s conflict. And the verses are in order, you cannot rearrange them.

Next time you write a song, try and get a plot going. With a conflict that has a struggle, challenge and resolution.

The Eagles defining talent has always been based on their outstanding harmonies. The way they can blend their voices is just pure candy to the ear. So listen, how it builds up throughout the whole song and not just the chorus.

The first verse is mostly just Glenn Frey. Then in the second verse, you can hear some ooohs in the back. and then in the third verse, the harmonies are alot more textured. Really great stuff.

Adding contrast, especially to the harmonies, grab’s the ear’s attention and really adds to the emotional affect of the song.

The groove makes your shoulders want to sway left and right, which adds to the feeling of shameful, yet fun mischievousness warm weather type of vibe to it.

This track actually won The Eagles a Grammy for Best Pop Vocal performance  by a Duo Or Group.

This tale of a libido unchecked has always been one of music’s greatest gems. A story of woman gone cheating. But really, can you blame her?


Filed under what makes the song so great

2 responses to “SongWriting Analysis – The Eagles “Lyin Eyes”

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