History of the Eagles Part One (2013) Movie Script

There are stars
In the southern sky
Southward as you go-o-o
There is moonlight
And moss in the trees
Down the Seven Bridges Ro-o-oad
- Pretty close.
- Not too bad.
It's gonna be about two
minutes, so come on.
- Do what you got to do.
- We got to go.
I need a wrist band.
It's something that you
can't do forever, you know?
This is not a lifetime career
that we can do, you know? So...
It's not?!
All right, let's go.
Thank you and good evening. We're
the Eagles from Los Angeles.
One, two, three, four.
Well, I'm running down the road
Trying to loosen my load
I got seven women on my mind...
People are always saying things to me like,
"You're just like a normal person. "
And I always say, "Of course!"
Ooh ooh
Ooh ooh!
All right!
We might be a little more
world-wise, you know,
than some of those kids, that's all.
We just maybe have less innocence
than they do, but, I mean,
I eat, I sleep, I fall in love,
I fall out of love, I work.
You know, I do pretty much the same thing.
You got your demons and you got desires
But I got a few of my own
Oooh someone to be kind to
In between the dark and the light
Oooh coming right behind you
Swear I'm gonna find you
one of these nights!
We saw a poster of us when
On the Border was made.
Everybody looked like little kids,
you know, like, early 20s and stuff.
And everybody didn't have their
wrinkles and baggy eyes.
Sort of like a president
when he first takes office.
And then, like four or five
years later, you know,
he just walks out, and his hair is grey,
and his eyes are drooping, and he's
just really, you know, real burned.
Spent the last year Rocky Mountain way
Couldn't get much higher!
The first thing that happens
is you get some kind of label,
then you've got to live up to it, and
then you just get caught in that,
and I forget what the second thing is!
You know I've always been a dreamer
Spend my life running round
And it's so hard to change
It's hard. It's like living two lives.
You know, I have a family, three kids.
And it's just hard to live in
between that line, you know,
of being out on the road and
being away for a month.
Keep on turning out and burning out
And turning out the sa-a-ame
So put me on a highway
And show me a sign
And take it to the limit
One more time.
Maybe we wouldn't want to do this any more,
or maybe we can't do this any more,
or maybe nobody will give a
shit if we do this any more.
Take it to the limit
One more t-i-i-ime.
Thank you.
No, I insist. You first.
Hi, there.
Lock it up.
A hearty bunch out there. Oh, he's
not even here. Now lock it up.
Hey, driver, lock 'em
up for us tonight, ok?
- Out of sight. - You just don't
know what those kids will do.
How about a beer? Is that what I heard?
- You got it, brother.
- Don't hurt yourself, young America.
- Would you like one?
- Yeah, I would like one.
I'm gonna drink tonight.
I think they feel like
they're up there, you know,
like they're on the stage.
Cos we look like them. We dress like them.
Part of it is that, and
part of it's the records.
I think they just relate to the songs.
I think it's 50/50, I guess.
The thing is now is to try to see how long
we can stay up here at
the top of the mountain.
It's very narrow and windy up here.
We can probably continue doing what we're
doing as long as the songs keep coming.
That's the only thing that frightens us,
is to not be able to do that any more.
If we go to the well and nothing comes up,
we would be in trouble. So far, so good.
I think we can maintain
this for a few more years.
I don't see why not.
Other people have. The Rolling
Stones and the Who and the Led...
and Led Zeppelin. I almost said
THE Led Zeppelin!.. Have done it.
Chicago's done it.
Groups last longer than
they used to, you know?
Shit don't float.
90% of the time, being in the
Eagles was a fucking blast.
You know, I was living the dream.
He was a hard-headed man
He was brutally handsome...
We never in our wildest dreams figured on
being this successful and lasting this long.
She held him up...
We were a bunch of guys out
there touring the country.
We had a little private plane.
We had parties after the shows.
We had a good time. We were
starting to make some money.
They took all the right pills
They threw outrageous parties...
We had three guitar players finally,
you know, so we could rock a bit.
So, it was a good time, a good
time for me, a good time for Don.
Life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind...
Everybody was really happy...
.. then!
Life in the fast lane
Everything, all the time
Life in the fast lane...
It was going really fast,
and probably too fast.
There was turmoil within the band.
We put a lot of pressure on ourselves.
As Glenn used to say, "We
made it, and it ate us. "
It's hard to be in a group. It's
a bit like being in a marriage,
if you quadruple it or
quintuple it, in our case.
They asked Don when the Eagles broke
up, "What was that like for you?"
And he said it was a horrible relief.
And I think that clocks it pretty well.
You're a real pro, Don, all the way.
Yeah, you are, too. The
way you handle people.
Except the people you pay,
nobody gives a shit about it.
Fuck you. I've been paying you
for seven years, you fuckhead.
So much stuff just happened.
You know, there's a philosopher who
says, "As you live your life...
".. it appears to be...
"anarchy and chaos and random events,
"non-related events
smashing into each other
"and causing this situation. "
And then... then this happens,
and it's overwhelming,
and it just looks like, "What
in the world is going on?"
And later, when you look back at it...
.. it looks like a finely-crafted novel.
But at the time, it don't!
And a lot of the Eagles'
story is like that.
I'm gonna fuckin' kill you. I can't wait.
I can't wait.
We might as well start at the beginning.
I grew up in Detroit, Michigan.
My dad worked in a factory.
My mother baked pies at General Motors.
I started taking piano lessons
when I was five years old.
That alone could get you beat up
after school in suburban Detroit.
And then she said...
Just because you've
become a young man now
There's still some things
that you don't understand...
Detroit was Motown, and so they
played all the Motown hits.
Keep your freedom for
as long as you can now
My momma told me, you'd
better shop around...
And that was the kind of stuff
that we would listen to.
I stopped playing piano when I was 12.
It was too much.
I wanted to do other things,
and I think the girl thing was
starting to happen, as well.
Then the Beatles came along,
and my aunt took me down to see
the Beatles at the Olympia.
It was crazy.
I remember having a girl that was
standing on her seat in front of me
fall backwards into my arms,
delirious, going, "Paul, Paul!"
You know, and I thought, "Oh, my God!"
I have a very vivid memory
of seeing the Beatles
with my parents on our old Admiral TV set.
It was like a bolt of lightning.
It had a huge impact on me.
It was revolutionary.
And it was an impact that
would last a lifetime,
and I know that had a huge
impact on Glenn, too,
even though we didn't know
each other at the time.
Linden, Texas, is my hometown. It's a
small town in North-eastern Texas.
When I was growing up, the
population was about 2,500, 2,600.
I can settle down...
It's primarily an agricultural area.
Some people worked at the steel mill.
It's just a typical small Texas town.
There's an old courthouse dating
back to before the Civil War
and one stoplight.
It's kind of like The Last
Picture Show, you know?
It was a great place musically,
because it was kind of
a cultural crossroads.
It's really located where the old
South begins to meet the West.
Linden, Texas, was the birthplace
of Scott Joplin and T-Bone Walker.
Yes, time is hard, baby...
Both my parents loved music, so we
had a lot of records in the house.
I was exposed to music of all
kinds from an early age.
You know, Country and Western music, Western
swing music, gospel music, Blues...
Johnny Cash, Hank Williams,
and Patsy Cline.
More, more, more
Gonna live it up and tear it down
Get in the groove and paint the town
Got a lot of rhythm in my soul...
There was a 50,000-watt radio
station in New Orleans,
and I heard things on that station
that I didn't hear anywhere else.
So, I had a lot of radio coming in.
And when I would go to work with my dad,
he would listen to a station in
Shreveport, Louisiana. KWKH.
Say, hey, good lookin!
What you got cookin?
How's about cooking
something up for me?
And that station broadcast a radio
show called the Louisiana Hayride,
where Elvis Presley made his
first radio broadcast in 1954.
Well, that's alright, Mama
That's alright with you
That's alright, Mama
Just any way you do
That's alright
That's alright...
The very first rock 'n' roll record
I bought was by Elvis Presley.
Anyway you do...
My playing the drums was
sort of an organic process.
I began by beating on my
school books with my fingers
and with pencils.
I would beat out little cadences,
and I used to drive my classmates
crazy doing that, until, I think,
one day, somebody said to me -
I think it was my friend
Richard Bowden - he said,
"Why don't you just start
playing the drums?"
I managed to cobble together
a drum kit from old drums
that I found stashed in the back
of the band hall at high school.
And then one day, my mom said,
"Come on, get in the car. "
And she drove me to a town
about an hour and a half away
called Sulphur Springs, Texas,
to McKay Music Company.
Much to my surprise,
she bought me a set of
red-sparkle Slingerland drums
that I still have today.
So, I have to give my
parents a lot of credit.
They bought me that drum kit
even though they couldn't really afford it.
The first band I was in was a
band with my high-school buddy
Richard Bowden and another
high-school friend, Jerry Surratt,
and we played Dixieland jazz music. Nobody sang.
We just played music.
I went to a high-school party,
and there were four kids
who were freshmen in high
school who were playing.
I was a junior, and I had a
couple beers that night and said,
"Hey, you know, do you know Satisfaction?
Cos I can sing it. "
So, I became the lead singer
of the Subterraneans.
And I try and I try
And I try...
I played in the Subterraneans for a while,
and then I played in another
band called the Mushrooms.
The most important thing
that happened to me
when I was in Detroit was I met Bob Seger.
I'm gonna tell my tale, come on!
He took me under his wing.
He invited me to recording sessions
that he was having, you know,
so I could see how records were made.
I was his mentor.
He was just so young, and
I liked him right away
because he was so funny.
He had a great sense of
humour, and, like me,
I could see he was really ambitious.
He really wanted to be on the radio.
He cut a song called Ramblin' Gamblin' Man.
He let me play acoustic
guitar on the basic track
and sing background vocals.
Ramblin' ma-a-an
A gamblin' man...
You can really hear Glenn blurt
out on the first chorus.
He comes out really loud. Tremendous gusto.
Of course, that was a national hit
for us, so that was really cool.
Bob was the first guy that wrote
his own songs and recorded them
that I had ever met.
He said, "You know, if you want to make it,
"you're gonna have to
write your own songs. "
And I said, "Well, what if they're bad?"
And he said, "Well, they're gonna be bad. "
He says, "You just keep
writing and keep writing,
"and eventually, you'll write a good song. "
We were gonna have a band together.
He was gonna get rid of his other guys,
and I was gonna be his bass player.
It didn't work out.
My mom found me smoking
pot with a friend of mine
in somebody's basement, and she
called up Seger's manager,
Punch Andrews, and said, "Just
a minute, not so fast. "
In the years leading up
to the Great Depression,
my dad had to quit school
after the eighth grade.
He had to go home and work in the
fields with his brother and sister
to help support the family.
His fondest wish, in fact, his life's goal,
was that I would go to college.
Every Saturday night, he would
bring home seven quarters,
and we'd put them in a piggy
bank, and when those quarters
amounted to 100, he would
take me to the bank
and we would buy a savings bond,
a United States savings bond,
and put that away for my college education.
So, between what my dad had saved
and between what I was making
doing gigs all over Texas
and Arkansas and Louisiana
on weekends, I paid for three
and a half years of college.
They have a world-famous music
department in which I did not excel.
I took one music course.
I think it was beginning
theory, and I flunked.
I made an "F."
But I didn't really care because
I was an English major.
Well, after the Mushrooms, I
got invited to join this band
called the Four of Us.
Started getting into some
of the California bands -
the Byrds, Buffalo
Springfield, the Beach Boys.
Always wanted to go to California.
And I got out there, my mind was blown.
The vegetation - I'd never seen palm trees.
You know, it was just
like a dream come true.
So you want to be a rock'n'roll star?
Then listen now to what I say
Just get an electric guitar...
The first celebrity I saw was David Crosby.
And when your hair's combed
right and your pants fit tight
It's gonna be all right...
And he had on that
flat-brimmed hat that he wore
on the second Byrds album, and
he had a little leather cape on,
and I just looked and I thought,
"My God, there's David Crosby. "
Zoom, and we went right by.
And in a week or two
if you make the charts
The girls'll tear you apart...
And the first person I met
was John David Souther.
We wanted to get high and play music.
There were two of us with guitars.
We were listening to a lot of
that sort of interface between
rock 'n' roll and country
and western music that was
happening in Southern California
at the time with the Byrds
and Dillard & Clark and the
Burrito Brothers and Poco.
When I last saw you
I couldn't find a reason why
I felt kind of blue...
There was a lot of great music
of that sort going around then.
Longbranch Pennywhistle here.
I suppose you wonder what that
name meant, and John David and I -
It was a well-kept spring back funky women.
The songs weren't very good.
I don't think Glenn and I were very
far along as songwriters then.
Run, boy, run
You gotta move...
We were a funny little
group, but we got gigs.
We, you know, managed to play in
some of the folk clubs around LA -
the Golden Bear and the Ash Grove.
Yeah, yeah, oh, yeah
What condition my condition was in...
We had a chance meeting with Kenny
Rogers in Dallas, Texas, one day.
He was coming through town
with the First Edition.
They were very hot at the time.
I tripped on a cloud and
fell-a eight miles high...
I remember this like it was yesterday.
This little kid came up and
said, "Mr Rogers," he said,
"I'm Don Henley, and I'm with
a group called Felicity,
and we're doing a show tonight, and
we'd love to have you come see us. "
And I said, "You know, I'm really
sorry, but I don't do that.
I don't just go to clubs and watch groups. "
He said, "I really think you'd like us. "
And I thought, "Well, that's
pretty cool," so I did.
From the minute that I met you, baby
You were hanging your chains on me
And I loved you so
I nearly lost my mind...
Kenny is a Texas boy, and he was
looking for groups to produce.
So, I brought them to LA,
and they literally lived at my
house for about four months.
We changed their name to Shiloh.
It was so much fun to take
them into the studio.
Well, thank you Mr Big
Time Music Business Man
For taking time to listen to my song...
With Shiloh, we made one album,
and it had a single called
"Simple Little Down Home Rock
and Roll Love Song for Rosie. "
Not exactly a short title!
Just a simple little down home
Rock and roll love song for Rosie...
We didn't know much about
the business at that point.
We were pretty naive.
Going down to the swamp
river country some day...
We kicked around in the
LA clubs for a while,
played the Whisky, played some of the
clubs down in the South Bay area,
and nothing really happened for us.
JD and I were looking
for any place to play.
We had heard about this guy Jackson Browne.
He'd been playing the same clubs we had,
but we never had seen him perform.
- This is California. Mr Jackson Browne.
- Ah, thank you, thank you.
'Then there were a bunch of gigs that
they had and some gigs that I had'
that they would show up at my gigs
and me at their gigs, and we
became really good friends.
And we'd start talking about, "Where
do you live, and what's going on?"
And Jackson said, "You know, you
should come down to Echo Park.
Rent's real cheap. "
Glenn got the apartment
next to my apartment,
and this apartment cost like 125
or something a month, you know.
And I needed to economize,
so I moved into the basement
underneath Glenn's place, which I
could get into for 35 a month.
It only had one door. It was really
just kind of an illegal place,
just a cubby-hole, and
that's where Jackson lived,
with JD and I above. You know, that was it.
There was a stereo, a piano, a
bed, a guitar, you know, a teapot.
We slept late in those days, except
around 9 o'clock in the morning,
I'd hear Jackson Browne's teapot going off,
this whistle in the distance.
And then I'd hear him playing piano.
I didn't really know how to write songs.
I knew I wanted to write songs,
but I didn't know exactly -
you just wait around for
inspiration, what was the deal?
Well, I learned through Jackson's ceiling
and my floor exactly how to write
songs cos Jackson would get up,
and he'd play the first
verse and first chorus,
and he'd play it 20 times until
he had it just the way he wanted.
And then there'd be silence.
And then I'd hear the teapot go off again.
Then it'd be quiet for 10 or 20 minutes.
Then I'd hear him start to play again,
and there was the second verse.
So, then he'd work on the second
verse, and he'd play it 20 times.
And then he'd go back
to the top of the song,
and he'd play the first verse, the
first chorus and the second verse
another 20 times until he was
really comfortable with it and,
you know, change a word here or
there, and I'm up there going,
"So, that's how you do it" -
elbow grease, you know,
time, thought, persistence.
Doctor, my eyes have seen the years
And the slow parade of fears
Without crying...
I wanted to kill him sometimes.
Jackson would play the same phrase
from Doctor, My Eyes for six weeks.
The same thing with The Pretender.
I just wanted to murder him.
Doctor, my eyes...
And it was during that period
of time that I met Glenn Frey
because we were on the same
label, called Amos Records.
Some of the things that struck me
when I first met Glenn were
things we had in common.
Both of our dads made a living
in the automotive industry.
Glenn and I loved old cars,
especially cars from the '50s.
He had a '55 Chevy that he named Gladys.
And we drove around Los Angeles in Gladys.
- Check out the new talent.
There's no better place in town
to catch those new singers
and songwriters than down at
the Monday night Hoot Night,
Doug Weston's world-famous
Troubadour, happening tonight.
'The Troubadour club was the
centre of the musical universe.
It was a very seminal place. It
was the place to see and be seen.
Every Monday night they had an open stage.
It was called Hoot Night.
The Troubadour was the place
to go if you were young
and happening and trying to get
involved in the music scene.
It was happening there.
Oh, California
I'm coming home
Oh, make me feel good Rock'n'roll band
I'm your biggest fan
California, I'm coming home.
I saw a lot of great
acts at the Troubadour.
So far away
Doesn't anybody stay
in one place any more?
It would be so fine to see your face...
I witnessed Elton John's American
debut performance in 1970.
And it's good old country
comfort in my bones
Just the sweetest sound my
ears have ever known...
Everybody who was anybody at the
time played at the Troubadour.
Of course, Linda,
she still has one of my favourite
voices in the business, ever.
Feeling better now we're through
Feeling better cos I'm over you...
The Troubadour is really responsible
for the entire music scene.
I mean, everything I got, really,
was virtually through either
performing there onstage
or in the bar, you know?
I'm telling you now, baby
And I'm going my way...
I was just started managing Linda then,
and Linda was going to be a star
- That voice as big as a house.
There wasn't anybody in the room
that cared about anything but that voice.
I'm gonna say it again...
One night, we're down at the Troubadour,
and John Boylan comes to me -
he's managing Linda Ronstadt -
and he says, "I'm taking Linda on the road.
"We need guys who can sing. You want
to play rhythm guitar and sing?"
I offered him 250 a week, and he took it.
I went back to him, I said,
"Can you give me some of
that money right now?"
I think he gave me 50 bucks.
And then I found Don from
this band called Shiloh.
I heard him playing at the Troubadour.
I'm coming down...
I was looking for a job. Glenn
introduced me to John Boylan.
I auditioned at this little
house in Laurel Canyon.
I had listened to her
album hundreds of times,
so I knew the songs backwards and forwards,
and I guess I passed the
audition, because I got the job.
I got a feeling called the blues Oh, Lord
Since my baby said good-bye
And I don't know what I'll do
All I do is sit and cry Oh, Lord
I've grown so used to him somehow
But I'm nobody's sugar momma now
And I'm lonesome
Got the lovesick blues.
I learned a lot from Linda.
It was a very formative experience for me.
And she could hang with the guys, you know.
She could drink tequila with the
rest of us and hold her own.
Saving nickels, saving dimes...
It was really very ad hoc.
We had a station wagon,
put the gear in the back.
We'd all get in it and drive
to the college and play there.
As a cost-cutting measure,
band members had to share
rooms in those days, so
Glenn and I were roommates.
- What did you guys eat?
- I had a bowl of Rice Krispies.
'Ladies and gentlemen, Linda Ronstadt. '
It's funny. I seem to get people at a
critical stage in their development
and they build their chops.
I mean, there's nothing that gets your chops
up better than playing every single night.
If the same thing happened to everybody
That just happened to me...
Linda and John Boylan really
like the way Henley and I play,
really like the way we sing
with her, and they start to get
a vision of putting together a
super group to back up Linda -
the best of the new country-rock musicians,
and we were going to be part of it.
I remember talking with Don, and Don said,
"Well, you know, I'd rather, like,
just be in a band with you. "
And I said, "Well, yeah, me too.
"You know, I'd rather just
be in a band with you. "
So, we went to Linda and said, "You know,
we really appreciate everything
you've done for us, and it means
a lot, and we love playing with you,
but we'd like to have our own band. "
If you won't be with me someday...
Now, you know, I think a
lot of people, you know,
could get miffed by that,
say, "Well, wait a second.
"I brought you out here, you know.
"I gave you a paying job
when you couldn't afford
"your own drinks at the Troubadour
bar, and now you want to quit?"
Linda was extremely gracious about
the whole thing, as was John Boylan.
They weren't resentful or bitter at all.
They were great.
They were supportive, as a matter of fact.
There you go and baby
Here am I
Well you left me here
So I could sit and cry...
They started talking about
putting a band together,
and we told them they
should get Bernie Leadon.
I was in several bands in
LA Early on, I met Linda.
Then I worked with Dillard & Clark -
Doug Dillard, banjo player, and
Gene Clark from the Byrds.
And so, now I'm in an
offshoot of the Byrds world,
and then that turned into an
invitation from the Burrito Brothers
from Chris Hillman to come join
them for their second album on A&M.
Since we got the older
guys to show us how
I don't see why we can't
stop right now...
And I was still in the Burritos,
but they had lost Gram Parsons,
and it had changed, and I wasn't
that interested any more.
Bernie was a very
accomplished banjo player,
and he could also play guitar in
what we called the Bindi lick style.
It was pioneered by a fellow
named Clarence White.
And then Glenn told me about
this guy named Randy Meisner who
had been in a band called Poco.
Randy could sing really high,
and he also played bass.
It's a good morning and
I'm feeling fine...
So, Glenn just kind of asked me one day
if I'd be interested in
starting a group with him.
And he had Henley and Bernie.
That was the first Eagles.
So, the plan was that Glenn and
I would try to recruit Bernie
and Randy, and then we would
all go to David Geffen and see
if he would give us a recording contract.
In the '70s, Asylum Records
was considered the LA sound -
Joni Mitchell, Crosby,
Stills, Nash & Young,
Jackson Browne.
David Geffen, who started Asylum,
is our patron, you know.
A Medici, Medici of rock'n'roll.
It's a very artist-oriented company, and
whatever they want to do, we support them.
If we believe in them,
we'll stick with them,
whether they make it or not.
Jackson was our conduit to David Geffen.
He was the first guy to get signed
by Geffen's new Asylum Records label.
So, we all walk in Geffen's
office, and we basically said,
"Here we are. "
Bernie Leadon just boldly says to Geffen,
"Well, do you want us or not?"
They were dying to sign with me.
I think they were very
ambitious, particularly Glenn.
Glenn wanted to have a hit band.
I loved the way Don sang.
You know, we all had hopes for it.
All of a sudden, we were
signed to Geffen's new label.
They sent us back to the drawing board.
They said, "You guys need to
go and rehearse some more. "
They said, "You know, you need to write some songs.
You're not really ready to record yet. "
So, they packed us off to Aspen, Colorado.
It could have been worse.
There were people who were way
higher than any of us had ever been.
It was a Wild West wide-open
town at that point.
MUSIC: "Tryin'" by the Eagles
We played at a club up
there called The Gallery,
which was located right at
the foot of Aspen Mountain.
Got to keep on tryin'
We didn't have a big catalogue
of our own tunes at that point.
We were just getting started.
We needed to learn how to play
together as a band, and we did.
The moon is a weeper
The sun is your clown
And his way of lovin'
Is holdin' you down...
And then it was like, "OK,
we need to make a record.
"Who are we going to get to produce it?"
We wanted to shoot as high as we could.
Glenn Frey came up with
Glyn Johns as an idea.
Glyn Johns was a name that kept
popping up on records we loved.
The first time I heard them was in Aspen.
I was not at all impressed, really.
THEY PLAY GUITAR DUE I thought they were confused.
Glenn Frey wanted to be
in a rock'n'roll band,
and Bernie Leadon, on the other
side, was one of the greatest
acoustic players, country
players, if you like.
And there was a bit of a confusion.
I didn't see what all the
fuss was about at all.
So I passed.
We're like, "God dang, what?" You
know, it's not what we expected.
He had worked with Led
Zeppelin, the Who, the Stones,
so he was coming from that,
and he said flat-out,
"You're not that, man. "
It isn't always easy to spot
what's hot about an artist
if you go and see them play. You
can see them on a bad night.
You know, it's not necessarily
the fairest way of doing it.
So, I thought, "Well, the best thing
to do would be for me to see them
"in a rehearsal situation
where we could converse
"and they could play new stuff
and I could stop and start. "
And they played the stuff
that they played in Aspen,
and it all sounded pretty much the same.
Well, I was thinking, "I don't get it.
I still don't get it. "
So, we decided to take a break for lunch
and as we were leaving,
somebody said, "Oh, why don't
we play Glyn that ballad?"
My daddy was a handsome devil
He had a chain five miles long...
And it just completely blew me off my feet.
I mean, there it was. That was the sound.
From every link a heart did dangle
For every maid...
Extraordinary blend of voices,
wonderful harmony sound.
Just stunning.
And that was it. I was in with both feet.
Now I have loved you like a baby...
Except that Glyn Johns
didn't want to come to the
United States and work.
He wanted to work in London
in the recording studios
that he was familiar with, and so
they shipped us off to England.
I don't think that any of us
except Bernie had ever been out
of the country, so it was a little
bit like going to the moon for us.
I'm hanging on to my peace of mind
I just don't know
I'm hanging on to those good times...
And I'm stoked. You know, I'm thinking,
"I'm going to go to Beatle
country with Glyn Johns.
"I'm going to record in the same studio
"where Led Zeppelin did Rock And Roll.
"Oh, my God, I can't wait. "
We were recorded at the
famous Olympic studios,
where a lot of legendary
records had been made.
Glyn Johns, he had a certain
style of recording,
which was very organic.
He would simply place a few mikes
around the room, and off you go.
You know, rather than, for example,
placing a microphone on each
and every drum, he would just put
three microphones on the drum kit.
He was accustomed to recording people
like John Bonham with Led Zeppelin.
And I said to Glyn, "I want
the bass drum to be louder. "
And he said, "If you want it
louder, hit it harder," you know?
And I hit it as hard as I could,
but I couldn't hit it
as hard as John Bonham.
He had a bunch of rules
that really didn't suit me
and some of the other guys, too.
You know, no getting high in the
studio, no drinking in the studio.
I agreed wholeheartedly with Glyn Johns
regarding drugs and alcohol in the studio -
that we'd get more work done and
that it would be better work.
When I got the opportunity
to produce and therefore
be in the chair, I decided that I
would no longer put up with that.
Somebody said to me the other night that
I was the designated driver
in the '60s and early '70s.
Glyn had worked with the Rolling
Stones at a time when they went
to the studio and did nothing except
wait for Keith, you know, to go down
in the basement and play his guitar
until he came up with some riff.
So, Glyn was impatient.
The Stones had burned him
out on the, you know,
"get high in the studio and wait for
something to happen" kind of thing.
'Let's go. We're rolling. '
'One, two, three. '
I like the way your
sparkling earrings lay
Against your skin so brown
And I wanna sleep with you
In the desert tonight...
There were three hit singles
on the first album.
Peaceful Easy Feeling was
written by Jack Tempchin,
who is our friend and
frequent collaborator.
Cos I got a peaceful easy feeling...
Peaceful Easy Feeling captures the
time, captures this attitude.
You can feel the wind
blowing across the desert.
What a feeling
Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh, ohh.
MUSIC: "Witchy Woman" by the Eagles
The second hit was Witchy Woman,
which I wrote with Bernie.
Witchy Woman started as a guitar figure.
Then we were jamming it one day,
and everybody was digging it.
And then Henley came back the
next day with the lyrics.
Raven hair and ruby lips
Sparks fly from her finger tips
Echoed voices in the night
She's a restless spirit
on an endless flight
Woo hoo, witchy woman
See how high she flies
Woo hoo, witchy woman
She got the moon in her eye...
During the time that the Eagles were
on the road for the first album,
we had just come through the
'60s - civil rights movement,
'68- all the assassinations,
all the rioting.
The Vietnam War still winding up.
Nixon, Watergate.
I welcome this kind of examination.
I really think that part of
the reason that the Eagles
succeeded the way they did
was because the country
and people and young people needed
to feel like things were OK.
So, here comes this song Take It Easy.
Well I'm a runnin' down the road
Trying to loosen my load
I've got seven women on my mind
Four that want to own me
Two that want to stone me
One says she's a friend of mine
Take it easy
Take it easy
Don't let the sound of your
own wheels drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don't even try to understand
Just find a place to play your hand
Take it easy...
Jackson had this song called Take It Easy.
He couldn't finish the song. He
was stuck in the second verse.
He had, "I'm standing on a
corner in Winslow, Arizona. "
And so, I filled in, "Such
a fine sight to see
"It's a girl, my Lord In a flatbed Ford
"Slowing down to take a look at me. "
Well, I'm a standin' on a
corner in Winslow, Arizona
Such a fine sight to see
It's a girl my Lord in a flat-bed Ford
Slowin' down to take a look at me...
Girl, Lord, Ford
- I mean, all the redemption, you know -
girls and cars and redemption
all in this one line.
I mean, he's very mercurical. You know...
mercurial? Mercurial.
And he's mercurical, too.
We may lose and we may win
But we will never be here again
So open up I'm climbin' in
So take it easy...
All right!
Someone once asked Stephen
Stills about the Eagles,
and his response was, "They
just wanted to be us. "
But when it came time
to do our album covers,
they suggested that we use
Gary Burden and Henry Diltz.
They had done the first
Crosby, Stills, Nash cover
and some stuff for Joni.
The one I really remember was
The Mamas & The Papas all
sitting in the bathtub.
That was one of their album covers.
So, these were, like, the cool
guys to have work on your album.
Gary Burden is about 40 years
old, full beard, long, greyish,
wavy hair, crystal-blue eyes.
Henry was a sort of magical,
non-invasive photographer guy.
For the Eagles,
it was the peyote spirits which
the American Indians, of course,
ate peyote and had a very,
very spiritual experience,
and they would maybe
meet their animal totem
or they would get their quest for life.
My deal was always to take the
bands out of their comfort zone.
Take them away from their
girlfriends, from telephones,
from anything, and have
them under my control
so that I could get things to
happen without any interference.
And so, we would take trips.
Now, how this plan came about exactly,
today you have to scratch your
head, but this was the plan.
OK, we'll all go to the Troubadour,
and we'll stay there till closing time.
And then we'll drive to Joshua Tree.
This morning I don't know...
We had a bag of peyote
buttons, a bunch of trail mix,
some tequila, and some
water, and some blankets.
And the seven of us set
out for Joshua Tree.
We got there probably about 4.30
in the morning, parked in this
special place that I don't know
how we found it in the dark.
We all took one peyote button,
put it in our mouths,
and started hiking up to the place
that we were supposed to go.
So, right around the time that
we're getting to the campsite
and we're starting to build the fire
and starting to cook some peyote
tea, and the first buttons -
everybody's chewing the first button
and the drug starts coming on
just as the sun is rising.
MUSIC: "Earlybird" by the Eagles
I think everybody got higher
than they ever imagined
anybody could be, and it was a good thing.
We were after getting into life deeper
and better and more and surrendering.
I had to go to the bathroom,
so I left the campsite,
and I hear the guys yelling from
the campfire, "Eagle! Eagle!"
I look up, and it's soaring right above me.
Huge wingspan.
I'm, like, scuffling to get my
pants back up, and I'm slipping.
I fall down, and the
bird just kind of goes,
"Eagles, huh? Yeah, I don't think so. "
The images of the first
album cover, I think,
really set the tone for
visually what Eagles are.
Gary designed the album cover
so that it would open up into a
whole poster, and at the bottom were
the Eagles around the campfire.
And then, up at the top, it
would go on up into the sky
and the eagle up in the sky.
But David Geffen thought
that would be confusing,
and without consulting us or
consulting Gary or the Eagles
or anybody, he told them,
"Just glue it shut. "
And so, then, when they glued
it shut, you would get this -
this album, front and back,
and you'd open it up,
and it would be upside-down, which
didn't make any sense to anybody.
The fact was that the success of the
first album scared the hell out of us.
Why me instead of some guy
down the street, you know?
Why me and some friends of mine
who are just as good of musicians
as I am, you know, but it happened
to me and it didn't happen to them?
I don't know.
Success can sometimes be
just as disconcerting
and frightening as failure, especially
when you have questions about your
own worthiness and your abilities.
It came time to do another album.
Don and I decided we'd try to
write some songs together.
I had been sitting over on Aqua Vista.
I was living on the couch,
and I'm just laying there playing
the guitar, and I started going...
Ding-digga-ding digga...
You know, I'm thinking,
"Yeah, that's pretty cool, kind
of Roy Orbison, kind of Mexican.
"Yeah, I like that. "
So, I showed him, you
know, that guitar riff.
I said, "Maybe we should
write something to this. "
It's another tequila sunrise
Staring slowly across the sky
I said goodbye
He was just a hired hand
Workin' on a dreamy plan to try...
Songs like "Desperado"
and "Tequila Sunrise",
that's when Glenn and I began collaborating, and
that's when we really became a songwriting team.
Every night when the sun goes down
Just another lonely boy in town
And she's out runnin' round.
Earlier that year,
someone had given Jackson
Browne the book of gunfighters.
It had all the big outlaw groups, Frank
and Jesse, the Doolin-Dalton gang.
We were all just fascinated
with those guys,
and we thought it would
make a great analogy.
Well, for example, we live
outside the laws of normality.
Also, you usually, because of
records or bank robberies,
you usually heard about these
guys before you ever saw them.
They had posters that were
wanted posters up for people.
There just seemed to be some parallels.
It wasn't really like we were outlaws,
but I think they did have
their nobler characteristics.
A life on the road is the
life of an outlaw, man.
We started talking about it.
Then we said, "Well, maybe we should do,
"like, an album all about the rebels. "
We got to doing this outlaw album,
and we had eight songs finished,
and we needed two more.
An idea Randy came up with was
how the guy became an outlaw
and how he became a guitar player.
He was a poor boy
Raised in a small family
He kinda had a craving For
something no one else could see
They said that he was crazy The
kind that no lady should meet
He ran off to the city Then
wandered around in the street.
I kind of started it, and
that's what usually happened.
I'd get a verse or two, and then I'm done,
and they would help fill in the blanks.
Oh, yeah. He wants to
see the lights a-flashing
And listen to the thunder ring.
Nobody expected there to be a concept
album with western cowboys music.
Don Henley was from Texas. He was a cowboy.
Glenn was from Detroit.
He wanted to be a cowboy.
Because I knew all these guys had
a little cowboy inside of them,
I took them to Western Costume and
just said, "Pick out your persona. "
Their premise was that, if
they had lived 100 years ago,
in like 1872, they probably
would have been gunslingers.
Everybody's going to be firing in the
direction of this building right here.
Jackson, J.D., Boyd, you all
got to be in the picture more.
- We're going to be in there.
- You ready? One, two, three!
And we fired so many blanks that
it was a cloud of smoke hanging
over this western town,
and the fire department came Cos
they thought it was a fire.
Keep firing!
We were just a bunch of kids.
We were just playing around.
The picture that's on
the back of the album,
there's a lot of reality in it.
All of the agents and managers
and road managers, all the guys
who didn't play are standing up,
alive with badges and guns,
and the four Eagles at the time and
Jackson and I are all dead, bound
up the way they used to do when
they'd catch outlaws in those days.
They'd stand them up for display.
People never tired of looking
at the corpse of a bad boy.
We all felt, when we were doing it
and as it was delivered, that it
was another really remarkable
record on the part of the band.
I mean, it was pretty extraordinary.
The band and I were
enormously thrilled with it.
They literally carried me
out of the control room.
They chaired me out of the control room.
Is there gonna be anything left...
"Desperado" comes out, and it bombs.
Jerry Greenberg was the Vice
President of Atlantic Records.
They were excited to get
the second Eagles album.
We played him "Desperado," and he said,
"Hmm, that's, yeah, that's nice,
that's good, that's nice. "
And turned around and said, "God,
they made a fuckin' cowboy record. "
Oh, you ain't gettin' no younger.
I was extremely flattered that
Linda recorded "Desperado. "
It was really her that
popularized the song.
Her version was very
poignant and beautiful.
And freedom, oh, freedom
That's just some people talkin'
Your prisoner is walking
through this world all alone.
There have been a lot of articles and things
that identify me with the L.A. sound.
It's sort of, like, me and
Jackson Browne and the Eagles.
All of us are reaching out for other
musical influences all the time.
The so-called southern
California sound was developing.
It was fresh, it was
different, it was unique.
It was a melting pot, people moving
here from all over the United
States to pursue their dream.
Actors, musicians, wannabe managers,
agents, wannabe, you know, like me.
I picked up the phone cold
and called David Geffen,
who was just starting Asylum Records.
Long story short, I took a job
as a manager with Asylum.
I was intrigued.
I wanted to know about the
Eagles and meet the Eagles
Cos I was a fan.
I get a phone call. Glenn
Frey's on the phone.
"We need money for Christmas.
Can you book dates?"
I book some dates.
So, I get on a plane and
go out to meet them.
First of all, the show was fantastic.
Crowd was nothing like I'd seen a
year, year and a half earlier.
- Good evening. Welcome to the Portland version of...
- Spread Eagle.
Spread Eagle. Tonight, the
promoter gave us chopsticks.
I don't think we ever checked in a hotel.
We went from there to a
party at a sorority house.
One thing led to another, and I'd
never seen anything like this.
They wouldn't give us any booze in the bar.
We tried to get some
booze, but they fucked up,
so we may burn the fucking place down.
We're not sure.
I don't think we went to sleep.
It was Eagle mania.
And then they went off to England to
record "On the Border" with Glyn Johns.
They were quite open to being produced.
Understandably, that changed.
They began to be more opinionated
and less insecure, perhaps.
We wanted to play rock 'n' roll
or at least a more rock 'n -roll
version of country music, and Glyn Johns
was of the opinion that we
weren't really capable of that.
I think he had been bombarded by loud,
aggressive rock 'n' roll
for many, many years.
At that point in his life, he wanted
mellow people and mellow music,
and we weren't exactly at
the same stage in life.
Frey sort of took over more.
He had this desire to be something that
I didn't really feel that
they were capable of doing.
He and Glenn Frey were like oil and water.
They clashed frequently.
In the studio, Glyn Johns was
pretty much a schoolmarm.
He'd push, push, push, you know?
And then he'd say, "That's it.
"That's good enough. We're moving on.
You're not a rock 'n -roll band.
"The Who is a rock 'n -roll
band, and you're not that. "
After each of those records,
the band freaked out and said,
"We've made a huge mistake.
"Glyn Johns missed it. "
We actually had conversations.
You know, "Desperado" hadn't
done as well as the first album.
None of them were thrilled with
the way the record sounded.
We wanted more input into how
our albums were being made.
We wanted more input into the
recording process itself.
Don and I thought that
the vocals were too wet.
There was too much echo on them.
And he definitely told us,
"Excuse me, that's my echo.
"It's my signature. It's my bloody echo.
It stays there.
"You don't tell me what to do. "
We needed to make a change.
I joined the Navy at the
height of the Cold War.
One of the main things they were
doing was looking for Russian
submarines, and you do that by using sonar.
When I got out, I had a lot of
electronics education, obviously.
And I got a job in a recording
studio here in New York.
The first session I ever
saw, like day one, day two,
was a Carole King demo.
She sat down and played piano, and
it was like, "Boy, this is fun.
"These people are having fun here. "
I worked my way up through the
ranks, and then, of course,
after engineering for four
or five years, I was like,
"Well, I can produce better than
some of these guys I'm working for. "
At the time, I was managing
Joe Walsh, so I played them
Walsh music that I thought was an
example of how it could be edgier.
Joe and I had just finished an album called
"The Smoker You Drink, The Player You Get. "
And they heard that and said, "That's
what we want to sound like. "
So, Irving arranged for us to have
a meeting with Bill Szymczyk.
We really only had two questions
that we wanted to ask him -
do you mind if we have some input
about how much echo is on the vocals?
And we wanted somebody who
would put a microphone on each
and every drum so we could have
more control over the mix.
He said yes to every question, and
so we knew he was the guy for us.
I said, "OK, under one condition.
"I have to call Glyn and
make sure it's OK with him. "
So, I called him, and I said, you know,
"Glyn, the Eagles want me to produce them. "
"Better you than me, mate. "
That's pretty much how I felt.
I mean, it had come to a
fairly unpleasant end.
Well, OK, you know, so much for
Beatle country with Glyn Johns.
Let's have a warm round of applause
on a hot afternoon for the Eagles!
James Dean, James Dean
So hungry and so lean
James Dean, James Dean
You said it all so clean.
Along about the third album,
I was having some difficulty in
communicating, I felt, in the
band, and I was starting to think
maybe I should go at some point.
They still had this unfulfilled
desire to be a mainstream
rock band and not just a vocal band,
but I think they wanted to
go in a tougher direction.
Bernie Leadon was a country-based
guitar player, but every time
I wanted to do a rock 'n -roll song,
he was the lead guitar player.
Cos I'm already gone.
Every time we wanted to do something
country that Bernie sang,
I was supposed to be the
lead guitar player,
and I wasn't a country
musician by any stretch.
It always felt like we needed
a third guitar player.
We had met this friend of Bernie's,
this guy named Don Felder.
We were playing in Boston, and
he came back to visit Bernie,
and we were jamming upstairs
in the dressing room,
and this guy was all over the neck.
What he brought was great chops.
I mean, we called him
Fingers, Fingers Felder,
because he was an incredible player.
We did that session. I think
it was like three hours.
And then I packed up and went home,
not thinking anything more about it
than it was just another session.
And the next day, Glenn
called me and asked me
if I would like to join the band.
I said, "Absolutely. "
All right, let's do... I'm in heaven.
- Let's go another one.
- All right, do it right!
The banter that would go on in
between takes was hysterical,
and so I took to running a two-track
to pick up these silly things.
We were young men with raging
hormones and something to prove.
In the context of the
times and the profession,
the way we behaved wasn't
really all that remarkable.
The creative impulse comes from
the dark side of the personality,
so we worked it good, you know.
We did a lot of stupid things,
said a lot of stupid things.
It was the '70s. There
were drugs everywhere.
Cactus sunrise was in my
face Everyone was dying
Everyone was lying and trying
Well, rub your belly
in the linseed oil...
There you go.
Well, the heartbreak of psoriasis
has once again descended upon
the adolescent experience,
and we'll see you later.
See you at the show later on tonight.
The question was, you know, who could handle it?
Who could function?
Who could show up?
One of these nights
One of these crazy long nights
We're gonna find out, pretty mama
What turns on your lights
The full moon is calling
The fever is high
And the wicked wind whispers and more
You got your demons
And you got desires But
I got a few of my own
Ooooh, someone to be kind to
In between the dark and the light
Ooooh, comin' right behind you
Swear I'm gonna find
you One of these nights
One of these days
There were always girls.
There were a lot of opportunities
out on the road to entertain
ourselves with one thing or another.
So, we started to perfect
after-show partying,
and we invented a place
called the Third Encore.
We did two encores in our show, so
the third encore was the party.
Everybody in the band and everybody
in the crew was given a bunch
of buttons, and all we said was, "No
weirdos, no strange people, OK?
If you're going to give a button to
somebody, you know, make it count. "
Totally sick. There's some real warped
shit coming on now, ladies and gentlemen.
A member of Andy Warthog's pop-bowel
movement has just tried to crash our party.
- What the?
- Welcome to Pittsburgh Spread Eagle.
We want to just ask these girls why they
think they have to leave now that it's 2:00.
One thing, he smells like beer.
We'd fill the bathtubs up with Budweiser,
and we'd have a party after every show.
- Your name, please. - Tammy
Farley. - Tammy, Tammy, Tammy.
- Here we have Karen. Karen is 20 years old.
- Is that correct?
- Yeah. - What's your name, dear?
- Fuck it, man. - Pardon? Fuck it.
Her name's "Fuck it, man. "
I want to talk about sex and drugs.
Who wants to go first?
I'm not lost for words on either subject.
Sex and drugs kind of came as
a big package in the '60s.
You know, it seemed like
everybody, the sexual revolution
and the drug thing, I guess,
probably started out together.
Didn't they?
Don and I both tried to have
relationships while we were members
of the Eagles, but it was always
like the Eagles trumped everything.
When the Eagles became successful,
we challenged all the rules.
Like when David Geffen left Asylum Records
and sold everything to Warner
Bros and started his new empire.
Let's be frank. When we signed
that contract, we were idiots.
We knew nothing about the business.
We had poor legal representation,
nobody looking out for us.
Remember, bands don't really get
record royalties usually ever.
So, they get money from touring,
but they get publishing money.
So, in the very beginning,
one thing that Geffen did
that I thought was great. He had
us form a band publishing company.
All the band's publishing went in that.
The problem was Geffen had the other half.
Half the Eagles' publishing,
half of my publishing,
half of all the artists that he
signed went to Warner Bros, but
he got them to return mine.
Jackson turned me on to the Eagles.
He had turned me on to a lot of artists,
and I felt I owed him something.
And that, not surprisingly, was not
acceptable rationale to the Eagles!
There's a certain amount of ire,
like, real, you know, like,
"What the fuck?
"I mean, we didn't get
our publishing back!"
So, it was the publishing issue and
the fact that the business managers
and the lawyers were all
shared common guys,
and did they have a conflict when an
issue came up and which side to take?
Well, it just makes you
feel like meat, you know?
It started out as such a personal,
nurturing endeavour, you know,
with Mr Geffen saying, "Oh, I'm
going to protect you guys.
"That's why I'm calling
my new label 'Asylum'.
"It's going to be a sanctuary
for real artists. "
He once said to Irving Azoff,
"You know, Irving, this
would be a great business
"if there weren't artists. "
Irving was the one guy who
really believed in us,
that I thought could do
something to help us.
I basically hired a lawyer and went in
after I said, "The Eagles would
like their publishing back,
to which the obvious response was, "No".
He sort of drew a line in
the sand and declared war,
so I felt, for my survival,
as their manager,
I needed to prove to them that
I wasn't afraid of Geffen
and would stand up and, you know.
The lawsuit was filed as a last resort.
I don't think David liked reading
his name in the lawsuit.
I thought it was incredibly ungrateful
and they misrepresented
the facts, but so be it.
Ultimately, we settled out of court,
and I don't believe it took very long.
He just wanted to get rid of us.
This is our new record contract.
Just paper!
So, then we headed off, for parts unknown
with Irving Azoff at the helm.
This card game is called Eagle Poker.
It's a bastardization of Red Dog.
I invented it in Detroit,
Michigan, in 1947...
.. one year before I was born.
- We were big gamblers. We played poker all the time.
- Oh, boy.
They should have never given me money!
So, we decided we'd go to
the Bahamas to gamble.
Everybody but Don was holding.
I had like four joints in a baggie,
stuffed down my sock in my cowboy boot.
Durkin, the pilot, has a joint.
Irving had about 30
valiums in a sugar pack.
There was a couple of
customs officials there
that asked us to collect all
our luggage and come over,
and they wanted to search us
'cause we looked terrible.
We had really long hair
and patches on our jeans
and a beard and not slept.
Now, I'm freaking out.
Bernie's freaking out.
Irving's freaking out.
Henley's pissed off.
Don't touch me.
Well, the guy proceeds to put
us all in a room together,
and they start searching us one by one.
My greatest fear is that I'm going
to be locked in a jail cell
with Bernie Leadon.
So, at this point, Irving
steps in and takes
one of the Bahamian customs
guys over to the side
and has a chat with him.
I'm not sure, to this day,
what Irving said to him.
The next thing I knew, they
let us pass with no problem.
It was sort of miraculous, really, it was,
because I thought for sure we
were going to be in the slammer.
It was dumb luck that
this guy bought my line
and didn't search them.
That was the day I decided, Irving Azoff
was the greatest manager in rock 'n' roll
and I would never do anything
without him by my side.
I had the only seat in a
major championship fight...
to be sitting there when, you
know, when a lyric was thrown out
and then hear a track.
My on my, you sure know
how to arrange things...
I've watched the creative
process with lots of people,
but I've never seen it the way
it fell in place with them.
I remember watching "Lyin' Eyes" written.
Glenn just had a way of coming
up with a phrase, you know?
He had written some kind of a tune,
and they were sitting in Tana's
one night and looking at some young
girl with an older guy at the bar,
and Glenn said, "Look at those lyin' eyes. "
And just... just like that,
wow, there's the song.
You can't hide your lyin' eyes
And your smile is a thin disguise
I thought by now you'd realise,
There ain't no way to
hide your lyin' eyes...
It was just about all these girls
who would come down to Dan Tana's
looking beautiful, and they'd be
there from 8:00pm to midnight
and have dinner and drinks
with all of us rockers,
and then they'd go home
because they were kept women.
On the other side of
town, a boy is waiting
With fiery eyes and
dreams no one could steal
She drives on through
the night anticipating,
Cause he makes her feel the
way she used to feel...
You know, when we were doing the
"One of These Nights" album,
we'd gone through three albums,
and the only people who'd sung on any
hit records were Don and myself.
And Randy always felt like, you
know, he was a lead singer, too.
And I actually felt that way, too.
I liked his voice.
So, he brought in the beginnings
of 'Take It To the Limit',
and it became the Eagles'
first number-one single.
Take it to the limit, come on,
and take it to the limit,
One more time,
Take it to the limit...
The line 'Take It To the
Limit' was to keep trying
before you reach a point in your
life where you feel, you know,
you've done everything and seen
everything sort of feeling.
You know, a part of getting old,
and just to take it to the limit
one more time, like every day,
just keep punching away at it.
And that's all that I really...
that was the line,
and from there, the song took a
different, you know, course.
Take it to the limit,
(Take it to the limit)
I think everybody in the Eagles
did the level best we could.
You have to remember how young we were,
the fact that nobody had
anything when we started,
and you got all this stuff coming at you.
Meanwhile, you're touring all the time.
It's a lot.
To Bernie, success on any scale
was synonymous with selling out.
He wanted us to remain sort
of an underground band.
We had our problems with Bernie, and
Bernie had his problems with us.
Some of it was based on him being
able to have a voice in the Eagles
and record the songs he wanted
to, the way he wanted to.
We were getting more and more rocked out,
and I think Bernie was less
and less happy about that...
to the point that, one time, we
had worked on a track all night.
I mean, it was a rocked-out track,
and we're all sitting behind
the board the next day,
listening to the various takes
of it, trying to decide
which take we liked the best.
Bernie hadn't said a word.
So, I asked him over the board, I
said, "Bernie, what do you think?"
There's a long pause, and he
gets up, and he stretches,
and he says, "I think I'm going surfing. "
And he left.
I was caught in the middle a lot of times.
And sometimes I would agree with Bernie,
but most of the time, I
would agree with Glenn.
Glenn and I always wanted
the band to be a hybrid,
to encompass bluegrass and
country and rock 'n' roll.
There was a part of Bernie
that really resisted that.
After a while, it became a real problem,
particularly between Bernie and Glenn.
Finally, we were at the
Orange Bowl in Miami.
We were backstage, and we were
talking about what our next move
was going to be, what our
plans were supposed to be,
and I was animated and adamant
about what we needed to do next
here, there, and everywhere,
and Bernie comes over
and pours a beer on my head and
says, "You need to chill out, man. "
I have no idea. It was a spontaneous thing.
I mean, I take that incident
now quite seriously.
That was a very disrespectful thing to do.
Obviously, it was intended
to be humiliating to him,
I would say, and is something
I'm really not proud of.
It did illustrate a breaking point.
During that time, we got a couple shows
opening for the Rolling Stones, and
Irving was managing Joe Walsh.
Joe Walsh was a bona fide
rock 'n' roll guitar player.
So, for a couple of those
shows, just for our encores,
we'd put Joe Walsh in a road box,
and we'd come back to do an encore,
and we'd roll the road box out,
and just like the model
jumping out of a cake,
we'd open the guitar case,
and there would be Joe Walsh
with his Les Paul, and he'd climb
out of the box and plug in,
and the Eagles... We would
play 'Rocky Mountain Way. '
I loved the way he played.
I'd loved the James Gang when
I was growing up in Detroit.
Now I started thinking, "Joe
Walsh for Bernie Leadon. "
Spent the last year Rocky Mountain Way
Couldn't get much higher...
OK, maybe the vocals
won't be quite as good,
but, boy, are we going to kick some ass!
Time to open fire
And we don't need the ladies cryin'
'Cause the story's sad...
I think one of the things
that I brought into the band
that was good for the band was
to bring it up a notch when we played live.
Just keep kicking it in the
butt a little bit, you know?
All right, D.C., come on, give it up!
I went to a show, maybe eight months later,
and the band are interacting
with each other
exactly like we did with me
onstage, except instead of me,
Walsh was up there, and it just was,
like, really, really odd, you know,
to be watching it and not be part of it.
So, I actually left that show.
I was just like,
"This is, like, too weird. "
So, we got Joe Walsh in the band.
That's another adventure,
because Joe was an
interesting bunch of guys.
Hey, I tell you what. If
you got firecrackers,
just wait until you get home,
lock yourself in the closet,
and light everything you got, OK?
Thank you, Joe.
He brought a lot of levity to just
about everything that happened,
which was needed at that time.
- Heads or tails?
- Heads.
Well, I could use a little head myself.
In those days, you didn't know
what he was going to do next.
It was fun most of the time,
although not all the time.
It was fun, depending on how
much you'd had to drink,
to see a television go sailing
off the 14th-floor balcony
and into the pool, as
long as nobody got hurt.
Joe Walsh was the American
King of room trash.
He had studied under some of the best.
One of the most terrifying
things that ever happened to me
was that Keith Moon decided he liked me.
All those Keith Moon stories are true.
This guy was full-blown nuts, and you
never knew what was coming next.
Keith was my mentor at
chaos, getting arrested,
practical jokes, pranks, room damage.
I live in hotels, tear out the walls,
I have accountants pay for it all,
They say I'm crazy, but
I have a good time...
One year, we gave him a chainsaw
for his birthday as a joke.
Life's been good to me so far,
Yeah, yeah, yeah...
By this time, we were
eating in nice restaurants
and buying expensive wine and
staying in great hotel rooms.
There were a lot of hotels that
we weren't allowed to go back to.
We were in Chicago, and we were
staying at the Astor Towers.
In Chicago, here's what happened.
There was a knock on the door,
and in walked John Belushi.
John wanted to show me the
finer restaurants of Chicago.
So, we went to the restaurant,
and they wouldn't let us in
because we had jeans, and he got
the maitre d' up to like a 300 bribe
and still they would not let us in.
And John said, "I know what to do.
I know what to do. "
And the next thing I knew, we
were standing in the alley,
and he spray-painted my jeans
black and made me do his,
and we went back, and we got in.
We were sitting in these Queen
Anne-period chairs that had
needlepoint, and when we stood
up, that was all black,
and the butts of our
pants were jeans again,
so, we had to kind of back
out of there and leave fast.
But that was the beginning of it.
And so that night, with much glee,
Joe set about to set the
world record for room trash.
John and I did 28,000 of room damage.
Glenn and Don didn't really ever
approve of the room trashing,
but they understood it.
They wanted respect as rock 'n' rollers,
and Joe brought that respect.
I was insecure always and afraid,
so I hid behind all of
my hang-ups with humour.
I was totally in awe of Don and Glenn.
I was intimidated by Don and
Glenn because they sang so good,
and they were writing stuff I could
never come close to writing.
After we've just had a bunch of hit
records on One Of These Nights,
we were under the microscope.
Everybody was going to look at
the next record we made and pass judgment.
Don and I were going, "Man,
this better be good. "
- Look at that.
- It's going to be quite a nice guitar.
- Felder, you see this?
- Who, uh, who tuned this?
Well, it has no nut.
With Joe in the band with me,
I wanted to write something,
musically, that would fit
two guitar players, that we
could play off of each other.
So, I was sitting on a sofa in
Malibu at this rental house
that I had on the beach. I was
playing this acoustic guitar
and this introduction came
out, that progression.
I kept playing it three or four times.
I had an old reel-to-reel tape recorder,
so I went back and recorded that
introduction to that song and
laid down that progression, made a
mix of it, and put it on a cassette
with, I don't know, the other 14
or 15 pieces of music that I had
assembled, and I gave a copy of the
cassette to Don, one to Glenn.
Don Felder used to send Henley and
I instrumental tapes, song ideas.
95% of them were cluttered
with guitar licks,
and we would listen to these things
and go, "Well, where do you sing?"
As Don and I were listening through
one of the Felder cassettes and this
song came up, we both sort of said, "Hmm.
Now, this is interesting. "
The music sounded to me like
some sort of a cross between
Spanish music and reggae music, and
that one really jumped out at me.
So, we set out to write a
song to that progression.
I'm pretty sure it was Henley's
idea to have a song called
Hotel California.
I think Henley's and Glenn's lyric
writing really came to a head.
They became real honest-to-God
songwriters then.
During the recording of
it, I thought that we
were on to something. I knew
we were on to something.
We were in a really creative phase,
and it just so happened that
Bill Szymczyk pushed record.
Thank God!
On a dark desert highway
Cool wind in my hair
Warm smell of colitas
Rising up through the air
Up ahead in the distance
I saw a shimmering light
My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim
I had to stop for the night
There she stood in the doorway
I heard the mission bell
And I was thinkin' to myself
This could be heaven
or this could be hell
Then she lit up a candle
And she showed me the way
There were voices down the corridor
I thought I heard them say
Welcome to the Hotel California
- Such a lovely place
- Such a lovely place
Such a lovely face
Plenty of room at the Hotel...
We've been asked a million times,
"What does that song mean?"
Don and I were big fans of
hidden, deeper meaning.
You know, you write songs and
you send them out to the world.
... So I called up the Captain
Please bring me my wine
He said
We haven't had that
spirit here since 1969...
And maybe somewhere in that song
is some stuff that's just yours,
that they're never going to figure out.
.. Far away
Wake you up in the middle of the night
Just to hear them say...
There has been a great deal of ridiculous
speculation about that song over the years.
I mean, it's really taken on a
life or a mythology of its own.
It's sort of like the "Paul is dead"
thing, or "Who was the walrus?"
.. Bring your alibis...
It's been denounced by Evangelicals.
We've been accused of all
kinds of wacky things,
like being members of the Church of Satan.
People see images on the album
cover that aren't there.
Just lunatic stuff.
.. And in the master's chambers
They gathered for the feast
They stabbed it with their steely knives
But they just can't kill the beast
Last thing I remember
I was running for the door
I had to find the passage back
to the place I was before...
My simple explanation is it's a
song about a journey from innocence
to experience. That's all.
.. You can check out any time you like
But you can never leave...
Whereas Felder was technically very,
very good, Walsh brought spontaneity
to it, and the two of them playing
off each other was just brilliant.
Out of great respect for each
other, there was always a little
competition between Felder and I.
We always tried to kind of
one-up each other, you know?
And that's really healthy.
It always made the song
better when we were kind of,
"Oh, yeah? Listen to this. "
We got to the end, where now is
the harmony guitars that are
playing together, and Joe said, "We
should do something that's like...
The ending of Hotel California -
that's one of my high points
of my entire recording career.
To have a seven-minute single be
number one - that was unheard of.
The record company said, "You got to do an edit.
You got to do an edit. "
And we all said, "No. Take it
or leave it. " And they took it.
We had no idea that that
song would affect as many
people on the planet as it did.
Thank you.
The rest of the album kind of
developed around that song.
The album, you could loosely say, is
a thematic album, a concept album.
Not unlike Desperado, Hotel California
was our reaction to what
was happening to us.
On just about every album we
made, there was some kind of a
commentary on the music business and
on American culture in general.
The hotel itself could be
taken as a metaphor not
only for the myth-making
of Southern California,
but for the myth-making that is
the American dream because it's a
fine line between the American
dream and the American nightmare.
When you're out there on your
own Where your memories...
All the songs we write for this
album can fit inside this concept.
.. You were lost until you found
out what it all comes down to...
Once the rest of the guys in the
band understood what the song
Hotel California was about,
it became kind of a theme,
and they started to customise
their writing to fit in with it.
.. Day by day It's only fair to wait...
I think that the Eagles started breaking up
during the recording of Hotel California.
There were creative tensions, but
there was always tension tensions.
By the time we got to
recording Hotel California,
if the song wasn't good enough
to survive the amount of time
we were working on the record,
it didn't make it on the record.
Perfection is not an accident.
'Our goal was just to be
the best we could be.
'We wanted to get better as songwriters'
and as performers, and we worked on it.
Don and I felt like there was
no space now for filler, and
Don Felder, for all of his talents
as a guitar player, is not a singer.
Felder wanted to write more, sing
more, and Felder had kind of
demanded that, "I'm going to sing
two songs on Hotel California. "
We were all alphas,
and we were all very assertive
and powerful in our own way.
You could bring in a great
track to Don and Glenn
and be really excited about it.
This happened to Felder.
I wrote the track for Victim Of Love.
It was going to be a follow-up
song on the Hotel California
record for me to sing.
.. Victim of love...
I have no recollection of anybody
being promised anything.
Victim Of Love was not brought
to the band as a complete song.
It was simply another chord progression
that Don Felder brought in.
It had no title, no lyrics, and no melody.
Glenn and I and JD Souther
all sat down and hammered
out the rest of it.
We did let Mr Felder sing it.
He sang it dozens of times over
the span of a week, over and over
and over again.
It simply didn't come up to band standards.
Victim Of Love had been recorded
with Felder as the lead vocalist,
and my job was to take Don
Felder out to lunch or dinner
while they went in the studio
and put Henley's vocal on it.
.. What kind of love have you got?
Irving took me out and said
that everybody in the band
thought that it was
better if Don sang that.
And it was a little bit of
a bitter pill to swallow.
I felt like Don was
taking that song from me.
I'd been promised a song
on the next record.
But there was no real way to
argue with my vocal versus
Don Henley's vocal.
There was no way to argue with
anybody's vocal in the band
compared to Don Henley.
Felder demanding to sing that song
would be the equivalent of me
demanding to play lead
guitar on Hotel California.
It just didn't make sense.
If you look at my vocal
participation in the Eagles
over the course of the
1970s, I sang less and less.
It was intentional. We had Don Henley.
Don and Glenn's position was, "This
is the best thing for the Eagles. "
And Don Felder never forgot that.
.. What kind of love have you got?
Get it! Get it! Run! Run! Run!
This is a real healthy thing.
It promotes good feelings,
you know, among... the guys,
and it keeps us from killing each other.
Where's my glove? Who's got my glove?
If we can yell at each
other on a baseball field,
then we don't have to yell at
each other when we're working.
- Get all my frustrations out.
- What frustrations?
I haven't been getting laid.
We try to get out and play softball
with the crew if we have a day off.
- Swing, batter!
- Oh, it's gone, it's gone. It's gone.
'Something to help release the tension. '
That's really what I do
to keep from going crazy.
How do you keep from going crazy, Joe?
I tell you, I just, uh...
'In the press and the media,
it was presented that we were
'constantly at war, and I can't
say that's exactly the case.
'We were interacting and
we were all intense.
'Glenn said to me one time, '
"I get nuts sometimes and I'm sorry. "
Hey, Joe.
'But that tension had a lot to do with'
fanning the artistic fire.
Having that dynamic was
important in making the music.
Well, we're rehearsing now,
and before we're even playing
and guys are just noodling around
and getting their amps going
and stuff, we hear Joe go...
.. Do-do-do-do-do.
You know, and everyone would
kind of go, "What did you play?
"Play that again. "
That was an exercise I was doing
because it's a coordination thing.
You know, it's like one of these deals.
So, I was doing that to warm up, and
they said, "Well, what is that?"
And I said, "Well, that's just
something I have, you know?
There you go.
That's the lick.
That's what we should
build the song around.
I was riding shotgun in a Corvette
with a drug dealer on the way
to a poker game, and the next thing I knew,
we were going about 90 miles
an hour, holding big time.
I was like, "Hey, man. What are you doing?"
You know, and he looked
at me, and he grinned.
He goes, "Life in the fast lane. "
And I thought, immediately,
"Now, there's a song title. "
Life in the fast lane Surely
make you lose your mind
Life in the fast lane...
Then they put out the greatest hits.
There was a period where
we sold a million records
a month for 18 months.
It's a little-known fact that the
Eagles had the biggest-selling
album of the 20th century.
But the music business never ever
got honest of its own volition.
No record company ever went
to an artist and said,
"You've done a great job.
"We're going to increase your royalties. "
So we created our own promotion company.
We created our own management company.
We had our own booking agency.
Stop any time.
Take it to the limit...
We achieved an amount of success
beyond our wildest imagination,
and Randy really had trouble with it.
Bam! Bam!
'Randy used to have trouble singing the high
note at the end of Take It To The Limit. '
.. Come on and take it to the limit
One more time
Take it to the limit...
Oh, yeah, I was always
kind of scared, basically.
"What if I don't hit it right?"
It was a pretty high note.
And in the middle of the fade, you
crank the volume knob and go, "What?!"
Randy could do it, but if you made
him do it, "Oh, no, man, I, uh... "
... One more time.
- Thank you.
- Randy Meisner.
He'd call the road manager and say,
"Tell Glenn I don't want to do
Take It To The Limit any more.
"Take it out of the set. " I
confronted him about this.
I called him up, and I said,
"Randy, there's thousands of people
waiting to hear you sing that song.
"You just can't say, 'Fuck them.
I don't feel like it. '
"Do you think I like singing Take It Easy
"and Peaceful Easy Feeling every night?
"I'm tired of those songs,
"but there's people in the
audience who've been waiting
"years to see us do those songs. "
We just got fed up with that and
just said, "OK, don't sing it.
"Why don't you just quit? You
say you are unhappy, quit. "
Randy never knew how great he was.
He wasn't alpha.
Confrontations were really hard for him.
All I want to see is five guys
happy playing together, you know,
and that's what makes the music.
We were backstage and the
crowd was going wild.
And our encore number was
Take It To The Limit.
People loved that song, they went crazy
when Randy hit those high notes.
But Randy didn't want to
do the song that night.
He'd been up partying all
night with a couple of girls
and a bottle of vodka, and Glenn
kept trying to talk him into it.
He said, "Man, the people want to hear that song.
You've got to do it. "
And Randy kept saying no.
So after about the third or fourth
time that Randy refused, Glenn
just backed up a couple of steps
and said, "Well, fuck you then!"
There were police officers standing
backstage and when they saw us
about to go at it, they started to move in
and Henley turned right to the
cops and said, "Stay out of this!
"This is personal and it is
private, real fucking private!"
The writing was on the wall
and Randy was going to leave.
There was only one person to ever
replace Randy Meisner in the Eagles
and in my mind it was Timothy B Schmit.
He replaced him in Poco, and plugged
in and sang the same parts.
And I remember sitting with Irving
and saying, "Irving, I think
"we should get Timothy Schmit. " He
said, "Well, I just saw Timothy.
"I was out on the road when the
guys in Poco were in the hotel bar
"and Timothy was smashed out
of his mind, he was jacked up.
"You sure about this?"
I said, "Irving, if you had
been in a band for 11 years
"and you were still making 250 a
week working 40 weeks a year,
"maybe you would be a little
smashed up yourself. "
They asked me to join their
band before I had even played
a note of music with them.
I just said, you know,
"Where do you want me? When?
"I am definitely in. "
We want to introduce you to the
newest member of our band.
He is our new bass player and we got
him from a really fine band, Poco.
Please give a nice Houston, Texas
welcome to Timothy Schmidt.
I went on the road with them
in 1978 as the new guy.
.. Your smile is a thin disguise...
And I heard a few, "Where is
Randy?" From the audience.
But I knew it was a good
move for them and me.
There were a lot of decisions
business-wise that needed to be made
in a secret session, Glenn and Don
and Irving in the back of the plane.
I didn't like that I wasn't part of that,
but I knew that it was good for the Eagles.
Don Felder REALLY did not like it.
Glenn and I saw ourselves
as the leaders of the band
but other people saw us dictators.
You just cannot have five leaders in a band.
It does not work.
People have to do what they do best.
There is all this undercurrent
and resentment and plotting
and complaining and I'm sure Timothy
thought, "What have I got myself into?"
I was just really happy to be there
and all these tensions, it is
not that I did not feel it, but
I had no idea how deep it was.
In my experience, all rock 'n'
roll bands are on the verge of
breaking up at all times.
The band at that point had begun
to split up into factions.
Don Felder, in an effort to gain more
control, had co-opted Joe Walsh,
so much of the time it was Felder
and Walsh against me and Glenn.
And at that point, even Glenn and I
were beginning to have our differences.
It was tearing the band apart.
The magic ingredient that
made the band successful was
the relationship between Don and Glenn.
Through years of touring, years
in the studio, all of that
friction really started driving a
wedge in between that relationship.
It reached a point where we
were just tired of each other.
Tired of the hoopla, tired of touring,
tired of pretty much everything.
At that point, song-writing
was becoming very difficult.
How much sleep did you guys get? When
did you get finished loading up?
- Two o'clock? - 5.30. - 530
this morning? - Yeah. - OK.
After the success of Hotel California
- Grammy winner, mega sales -
top that, and we show up at the
studio and nobody has one song done.
I don't know what we will do first but...
I had enough of a piece where
they both went "That's great.
"Let's develop that," and I was
really pleased that they wanted to
develop that one because it
came out more as an R&B song.
And it is very simple.
Very simple instrumentation,
very simple arrangement.
There's a lot of air in it.
That's why it works.
Look at us baby Up all night
Tearing our love apart
Aren't we the same two
people who live...
About halfway through, Don comes up
to me and says, "There's your hit. "
.. Every time I try to walk away
Something makes me turn around and stay
And I can't tell you why...
We are on top of the world. We are young.
We were overdoing everything.
There was a lot of chemical
dependency going on within
the band and that was rough.
During all of that time of writing
and recording The Long Run,
and all the time on the road
that we were on the road doing
The Long Run, we were all using cocaine.
When we first started snorting
coke it was like a writing tool.
Do a couple of bumps and kind of
get started talking about stuff,
get yourself going and launch into
some sort of idea for a song.
But in the end, cocaine brought
out the worst in everybody.
Yes, this half hour of the show
is brought to you by cocaine,
the makers of hits.
.. In the long run
Ooh I want to tell you
it's a long run...
Making that album was excruciating.
We were just completely burned out.
We had driven ourselves really
hard for almost a decade
and we were just fried.
It was long too. I mean, the days
and hours would drag on, it would
feel like we were not
getting anything done.
It was more painful than Hotel California.
It was more of a painful birth,
because all the stuff was going on
and we were getting pretty frazzled.
And the record company didn't
care if we farted and burped.
They would put that out. They didn't care.
"When can we have it?" Because that
was their whole corporate quarter.
Who can go the distance?
We will find out in the long run
In the long run...
At that point, we inked in
The Long Run as the title.
I think Henley said, "I know what
to call this one. Look at us. "
.. We can handle some resistance...
Hold it. Stop.
That is it.
Eagles, The Long Run, song two, take one.
It was a struggle, an endless
start, stop, start, stop.
We called it The Long One.
It was the beginning of the end.
Even though I don't think
I saw it right then.
There were a lot of things building up
and a lot of things I tried to
overlook for the good of the band,
and ultimately I just couldn't
look past some of this any more.
And it festered because we
didn't talk about these things.
It finally came to a head in Long Beach.
We were doing a benefit for
Senator Alan Cranston.
He was concerned about a lot
of some of the same issues
we were concerned about, including
environmental destruction
and the war, so we wanted to support him.
Felder didn't like us doing benefits,
he just thought that was money that
should be going into his pocket.
"Why are we doing it for
Jerry Brown or anti-nukes?"
Are you willing to sacrifice?
Alan Cranston and his wife are
coming around to personally thank
every member of the Eagles for doing this.
I was very uninformed about
politics, I couldn't care
less about politics, I didn't even
know or care who Alan Cranston was.
Senator Cranston went
up to Felder and said,
"I want to thank you," and Felder
looked at the Senator and said,
"You're welcome," and then as he was
turning away he said, "I guess. "
"I guess. "
"I guess. " And Glenn heard it.
And I just... got really mad.
I was drinking a long-necked Bud
and walked into the tuning room
while Walsh and Felder was
and took the beer bottle
and threw it against the
wall and smashed it.
I stormed out.
I got more mad and more mad. By the
time we went on stage, I was seething.
I wanted to kill Felder.
Thank you again very much
from all the Eagles,
and for Senator Cranston for coming
out here and checking it out.
One, two, three, four.
A lot of tensions between Glenn and Felder
and the real manifestation
of it came that night.
Somebody is going to hurt someone
before the night is through...
So now we are playing the show
and trying to act like everything
is OK and we get through the songs,
and I just keep looking over at him,
"You ungrateful son of a bitch. "
There's going to be a heartache tonight
A heartache tonight, I know...
Just seeing that, I really saw
how serious it was at that show.
They were fighting on
stage, there's audio of it.
You are a real pro, Don, all the way.
Yeah, you are too, the way you handle
people, except for the people you pay.
Nobody gives a shit about it.
Fuck you, I have been paying you
for seven years, you fuckhead.
So it starts getting
towards the end of the set
and I am looking at him going,
"Three more songs, asshole. "
And I am looking at him
and I am ready to go.
I can't wait to get my hands on him.
"When we get off the stage, I
am going to kick your ass. "
Fucking kill you. I can't wait.
Whoa! When that kind of stuff is on
stage and you're in front of people,
you've got problems.
Thank you very much.
We got through the show and it just,
all hell broke loose backstage.
When the set ended, he was out ahead
of me, took his cheapest guitar...
.. busted it in a million pieces, jumped
into his limousine and drove off.
And that was it. That was really the
straw that broke the camel's back.
Well, baby, there you stand...
Someone wrote the Eagles went
out with a whimper not a bang,
which was true.
.. Oh my God, I can't believe
it is happening again...
I didn't want to hear it. This was
like my super dream had come true.
.. And it looks like the end...
So I called Glen and I said, "What
is the status? What is going on?
"Is this thing really broken up?"
He said, "Yeah, it is over. "
We were beat and it was really
affecting the foundational core,
the soul of the band. We hit the wall.
You work, work, work, you get up to a peak
and then it is almost invariably people
head-butt and, "Whose band is it?"
And, "I am in charge. " And, "No,
you are not. " And there you go.
.. You never thought you'd be
alone This far down the line...
We had always said that we wanted
to step off the wave just before it
crashed into the beach and we did.
.. You're afraid it's
all been wasted time...
.. The autumn leaves have
got you thinking...
The Beatle guys say they never
thought, McCartney never thought that
band was going to last more than two
years, because no pop band did.
I think it's part of it. It
comes together, it's magic
and it falls apart.
But how cool... that it
even happens at all.
.. I could have done so
many things, baby...
It was magical.
.. If I could only stop my mind...
They wrote a lot of great, great
songs that will be celebrated
and listened to and loved for a long time.
We managed to represent that
period of time in the '70s,
Southern California, which was
very artistically creative.
I hope that is remembered like
the roaring '20s are, you know?
Our generation and what we did.
.. You can get on with your search Baby
And I can get on with mine
And maybe some day we will find
That it wasn't really wasted time.
We set out to become a band
for our time, but sometimes
if you do a good enough job, you
become a band for all time.
On a dark desert highway
Cool wind in my hair
Warm smell of colitas
Rising up through the air
Up ahead in the distance
I saw a shimmering light
My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim
I had to stop for the night
There she stood in the doorway
I heard the mission bell
I was thinking to myself
This could be heaven
Or this could be hell
Then she lit up a candle
And she showed me the way
There were voices down the corridor
I thought I heard them say...
One of these nights One
of these crazy old nights
We're going to find out, pretty mama...
A funny thing happened
right when we broke up.
1980 is when the format "classic
rock" hit American radio.
So, even though the band broke up,
they kept playing our songs all the time.
It was like we never went away.
We were still on the radio.
Well, I'm a-running down the
road Trying to loosen my load
I got seven women on my mind...
Somebody once told me people
didn't just listen to the Eagles.
They did things to the Eagles.
They went on fandangos
and drove across the country with
three of their high-school buddies.
Take it easy...
People broke up with their girlfriends.
Every time I try to walk away
Something makes me
turn around and stay...
Cos I'm al-I-I-Iready gone
And I'm fee-e-e-eling strong...
People quit their jobs
or changed their lives.
They did things to the Eagles.
Hey there, how are you?
It's been a long time...
Songs from that album have even
been played in outer space.
And they used to pipe the music
up to the space shuttle to wake
the astronauts up in the morning.
'Shortly after having a breakfast
of steak and eggs and toast,
'he then put on his space suit... '
And heroes, they come and they go...
He was a hard-headed man,
he was brutally handsome
She was terminally pretty...
On a dark desert highway
Cool wind in my hair...
That song has really gotten around.
.. Rising up through the air
Up ahead in the distance
Saw a shimmering light
Head grew heavy and my sight grew dim
I had to stop for the night...
There's been a lot of conjecture about how
and why we got back together.
We began to realise that
we'd been away for 14 years.
Maybe we could have that rarest
of things in American life,
which is a second act.
You know, a second chance.
Thank you.
When we stopped, I was really sad.
Like, "What are we going to do?"
I sleep all day out all night
I know where you're going
I don't rock you act that way
You don't think it's showing...
I was pretty devastated.
I had only been part of it
for barely three years,
and I'd loved it.
When we're hungry Love
will keep us alive...
We created this monster, and it
took its toll on all of our lives.
Maybe some day we will find
That it wasn't really wasted time...
Somebody was quoted as saying the
Eagles would get back together
when hell freezes over.
So, hell froze over.
Mmm-m-m-mmm mm-mm-mmm.
WOMAN: We're all ready. The
gentleman in blue over there.
After the acrimony and the
bitterness that marked
the demise of the band, it must
have been a long road to reunion.
Can you just take us through the
steps that you went through
on the road to reunification?
Anybody want that one?
No, really, it's a fair question.
From the time that we disbanded in 1980,
there were always offers on the
table for us to get back together.
It started with the first US Festival,
and Steve Wozniak wanted to
pay us a million dollars.
I said no.
I needed to do something else.
The heat is on
It's on the street
The heat is... on!
I called my first solo album No
Fun Aloud because I was having
so much fun.
It was so liberating to
know that whatever I did
was going to be more fun than what I
just did for the last three years on
The Long Run album.
I knew I wanted to have a
songwriting partner, so I
asked my friend Jack Tempchin if he
wanted to write some songs together.
And Jack's a very bright guy lyrically,
and so I started working with him.
He had become a disciplined
co-writer with Don Henley,
and when the Eagles broke up,
he just wanted to let go
and have some fun with music, you know?
So we were fiddling around with
some grooves, and one of us said,
"You belong to the city. "
And then we're going, "Oh, yeah, yeah.
That's it. "
Cos you belong to the city
You belong to the night...
You just show up and good things happen.
I make my living off
the evening news...
Henley's solo career was
really, really successful.
Going solo was the
scariest part of my life.
All she wants to do is dance, dance...
The whole MTV thing was a difficult
transition for me to make.
You know, the Eagles, at one point,
had been accused by some
critic of loitering onstage.
So it was difficult for
us loiterers to make
the transition to the world of
choreography and costume and acting.
She wants to party She
wants to get down...
Did I benefit from MTV? Yes, I did.
You know, I made a couple of
videos that won some MTV awards.
Nevertheless, I would just as soon
have skipped the whole thing,
because I considered myself,
first and foremost, a songwriter
and a recording artist.
I didn't really want to be an actor, too.
Nice, huh?
The guy who sold it to
me said it was a lemon.
But I'm telling you, it
may look like a cow,
but she runs like a stallion.
I always like to take a
good-bye look at America.
Just in case it's my last.
I acted in television, in movies.
I wasn't thinking about getting
back together with the Eagles.
The guy's got an attitude problem.
Yeah, well, he listens to me.
I can help you with that.
'Cameron would call me up and say,
'"Glenn, I gotta find somebody
that's not going to take'
"any shit off Tom Cruise, and
I think you're the guy. "
We have history, Dennis.
Oh, yeah. We got history all right, Jerry.
No, no, no. No, no, no. Dennis!
Dennis! Dennis! Don't! Don't!
Nobody on the road
Nobody on the beach
I feel it in the air
The summer's out of reach...
I signed Don Henley to Geffen Records.
Now, you might say, since
the Eagles sued me
at Asylum Records, why he did
come with me at Geffen Records?
Well, David uses the same pick up lines
every time he comes a-courtin'.
"You know how much I care
about you as an artist.
"You know what a big fan I am of yours. "
And so I bought it a second
time and I signed with him.
And then things started to fall apart.
I produced several hits, but I could
feel the support somehow waning.
Don got into arguments with
them over things like budgets,
videos, artwork, things like that.
I recall Don starting to
write letters to them
referring to them as
"Nickel and Dime Records".
When you feel like your label
is not supporting you,
it's completely deflating.
I used to call him "Golden Throat".
I thought he was an incredible singer.
But, by nature, he's a malcontent.
He's always been a malcontent.
And, you know, that's just life.
So I just said one day, "I'm not
going to record for you anymore.
"I'm leaving. " And so he
sued me for 30 million.
Happily ever after fails
We've been poisoned by these fairy tails
The lawyers dwell on small details...
My wife has MS, and they deposed her,
dragged her all the way from Texas
to Los Angeles to sit her down in
front of his attorneys and ask
her a bunch of pointless questions,
because she didn't know anything.
I thought that was really low.
I said to Irving over the Henley contract,
"I'd sooner die than let you fuck me.
"You'd better win this case. "
It was settled, you know, and that
was the end of that relationship.
Offer up your best defence
This is the end...
This is the end
Of the innocence.
I've realised now that we
have adult rock stars.
You don't have to give this up
when you turn 30 or 35 or 40.
I'll always make records and write songs.
I've got to do them.
Otherwise, I'd go nuts.
This is a tune that was written
with my new friend Mike Campbell
and my old friend John David Souther.
'When the band broke up,
'Glenn started writing
songs with Jack Tempchin.
'I guess the rift between Henley
'and Frey probably spread
to between Frey and me. '
Glenn and I had had some
outrageously fun times together.
And then Don and I did for a decade or so.
Been trying to get down
to the heart of the matter
But my will gets weak and
my thoughts seem to scatter
But I think it's about forgiveness
Forgiveness, even if, even if,
you don't love me anymore.
How have you changed as
musicians over the years,
both as a group and individually?
Well, your whole mandate
is just to improve.
You know, life is about improvement,
whether it's as a musician or as
a singer or as a songwriter or
just, you know, all the other
different hats we all wear.
So, hopefully, we're just getting better.
We've been doing this quite
a long time now on and off,
and we feel like we've
got it down pretty good.
And, in fact, we've had five days
off, and we're ready to go now.
When the Eagles first broke up,
I wasn't quite sure what I
was going to do with myself.
So I just hustled.
I went just as a singer with Toto,
I played bass for Jimmy Buffett,
I went out with Warren Zevon
and Dan Fogelberg, and stuff I
wouldn't have necessarily done.
I sang on Poison records
and Twisted Sister,
although you'll never see my name.
They never gave me credit.
That was more like yelling.
It's not all going to be the
greatest thing in the world.
But if you can work and support
yourself and your family, it's good.
WOMAN: OK, next question. Gentleman
in the front here, Richard.
What position do you think
rock'n'roll takes now about drugs?
We came from a generation that
experimented with all kinds
of substances, of course.
I think our message is that...
you can be a damn good rock band
without all that stuff.
I'd like to propose a toast to
dedicate this song to you, to us.
The drinking man's musician, Joe Walsh!
I ended up an alcoholic.
And very fond of cocaine.
If I was awake, I was...
I was doing that stuff.
Good morning, rock fans.
'In the very early years,
it had briefly worked. '
And then you chase it when
it doesn't work anymore.
And I chased it for years and years.
If you look at your reflection
In the bottom of the well
What you see is only on the surface...
"Could Hemingway have written
like that if he was sober,
"or could Hendrix have played like that
"if he didn't experiment
with hallucinogenics?
"Well, probably not. "
I used that one for years and
years, and it never occurred to me
that all those people are dead.
They got further and
further away from reality.
- Should I look at you or the camera?
- Look at me.
I ended up... in bad shape.
I wanna live with a cinnamon girl
I could be happy the rest of my life
With a cinnamon girl
A dreamer of pictures
I run in the night...
'I had hit bottom. '
And I knew that I was done and that...
.. I would probably die if I kept going.
Mom, send me money right now
I'm gonna make it somehow
I need another chance...
Joe was a mess.
He was around a bunch of people
that were really just enablers.
Nobody wanted to intervene.
Nobody wanted to tell him he had a
drug problem or a drinking problem.
Everybody was just going along with Joe.
I remember what we all did when
it was an art form, you know?
And I'd like to fight
to get it back to that.
And I was very, very happy in the Eagles.
I was just going to say I'm sorry we
broke up, but we didn't break up.
We just stopped, I think.
We just said, you know,
"The heck with the '80s. "
Song three, take six.
In 1990, we tried to get
together to refuel it.
Everybody was in on that, but
Glenn wasn't involved yet.
Irving got us together
- Timothy, Joe, myself, and Don Henley.
Glenn was supposed to
join us in the studio,
and he was going to bring some songs in,
and we were going to start
making another record.
So, we started rehearsing, the
four of us, then we got a call,
I think about the third or fourth
day in the studio, saying that
Glenn had refused to come be
part of it, to join the party.
So we just stopped.
He was still, "I'm not doing this. "
Well, you know, to tell you the truth,
I was having a fine time
doing what I was doing.
I mean, there's more to life
than being in the Eagles.
The moment was always going to be kind of
when Glenn was ready to do it again.
I think Henley would have
been more willing than Glenn.
For me, personally, I think
that I had proved pretty much
everything that I needed to
prove in my solo career.
I had won a couple of
Grammys and had a few hits
and some successful tours.
And I had founded the Walden Woods Project.
When you're a solo artist, you
have to take responsibility
for everything - every mistake,
every bad record, every sour note.
But when you're in a band,
you get to share the praise and
the blame with your bandmates.
So, I was OK with the
notion of maybe going back
and being in a band again.
The thing that sort of turned my head
was the release of the Common Thread album.
Irving and Don went to Nashville
and they talked a bunch of people
into recording some Eagles songs,
with the royalties going to
the Walden Woods Project.
Well, I'm a-running down the
road trying to loosen my load...
I don't know who asked me, but they said,
"Travis Tritt's going to
do a video of Take It Easy
"and he wants to know if you
guys will be in the video. "
I said, "Well, OK."
Take it easy
Take it easy...
Never really talked to Travis
about whose idea it was.
I think Irving probably had
a hand in that whole thing.
Was I trying to put the band back
together by doing Common Thread?
Was I waiting for the moment? Yeah.
.. Understand, just find a
place to make your stand
Take it easy...
In the Travis Tritt video, there
was a little bandstand scene
and we all picked up our
instruments and started playing.
I was thinking, "Guys, come on!" You know?
'You know, it's interesting -
after years pass, you know,
'you really sort of remember
that you were friends first.
'You have a lot of common history together
'and a lot of shared experiences. '
I remembered mostly the good stuff.
I didn't really think about the bad stuff.
I just remembered how much we
genuinely had liked each other
and how much fun we'd had.
We realised, after the success
of the Common Thread album
that there were still a
lot of people out there -
a whole lot of people - who
wanted to see us play again.
You know, sometimes there's
a little bit of serendipity
involved in this, and I think
what happened is everybody's life
started to line up in a way that
now it made sense for all of us.
And we discussed it.
Joe and Don came up and sat in at
a benefit that I did in Aspen.
'We had a meeting in Aspen. '
I was one of the first guys that
they wanted to try it out on.
You know, Joe was buzzed. It
was 1.00 in the afternoon.
You know, and he would say,
"Hey, I'm there, man. I'm fine.
"Don't worry about me. "
But Don and I could both tell that
he wasn't fine, and we were worried.
They said what they wanted to do.
They wanted to try it,
get back together again.
They didn't know what I
would say, but I said,
"I understand, and, yeah, I can get sober. "
Somewhere along the
way I found the meaning
Woke up dreaming
Along the way
Never quite seems the
same when you awaken
And making up for the
time is such a price to pay
Then they take the dream away
and it just ain't fair...
We had to get Joe into some sort of rehab,
and we couldn't be sure
it was going to work.
So we better have Felder.
The Eagles reunion had better have
at least one of the two of them,
and hopefully both.
Irving called me up and
said that Don and Glenn
and Joe had gotten together, and
they were talking about doing
something, and would I be
interested in doing it?
I said, "Absolutely. "
One thing led to another,
and finally Irving
and Don Felder picked him
up and drove him to rehab.
I made a commitment to them
that I would clean up...
.. and that I would be in the band
.. if that's what they wanted to do.
So help me through the night
Help me to ease the pain...
I'm really, really grateful
to those three guys...
Tell me it's all right...
Because I had... a really
good reason to get sober.
And as soon as I got sober,
we started rehearsals.
He was a hard-headed man
He was brutally handsome
She was terminally pretty
She held him up, and
he held her for ransom
In the heart of the cold, cold city
He had a nasty reputation as a cruel dude
They said he was ruthless,
they said he was crude...
From that first phone call from Irving
to showing up on a rehearsal
stage to start putting together
a show for MTV was only a matter
of weeks, if not a month.
Life in the fast lane Surely
make you lose your mind...
'It was a little scary
rehearsing for the MTV thing.
'Normally, I think people would
have their act down a few weeks,
'at least, before entering
into something like that,
'but we just dove in headfirst. '
'Well, even though we had
rehearsed really well,
'for the first time to walk
out on stage and actually
'play as a band in public and kind of
put the key back into the ignition
'and turn it over for the first time,
it was really a lot of nerves. '
- Are we going the right way?
- Glenn.
'Not having played as a group
in 14 years, the first night,
'there was a lot of terror. '
Gentlemen, good to be with ya.
Hope I'm with ya all night!
- Have a good one, OK? OK.
- Showtime! Showtime! Showtime!
'The audience was very kind,
and they were with us.
'And that was good, but it was rough. '
Just another day in paradise
You stumble to your bed
You'd give anything to silence
Those voices ringing in your head
You thought you could find happiness
Just over that green hill
You thought you would be satisfied
But you never will.
'Even when we went onstage, we
were definitely a little tight.
'Until, I think, Henley forgot the words
'to one of the new songs... '
You want to start again?
I'll tell you what.
This is television, so we get
to do this till we're happy.
I thought... Now, I thought you
didn't remember the third verse.
- That was only the second verse!
- I know.
I know the third verse.
'That was sort of the icebreaker, though.
'That was a good thing, ultimately. '
I feel like Tommy Smothers.
We didn't think getting back
together was quite as legitimate
unless we had some new material,
so we're going to put forth several
new songs for you this evening.
This first one Timothy B Schmit
is going to sing for you.
This is called Love Will Keep Us Alive.
I was standing
All alone against the world outside
You were searching
For a place to hide
Lost and lonely
Now you've given me the will to survive
When we're hungry, love
will keep us alive...
After selling 100 million records
worldwide, was it real pressure
on you to write the new material
for the Hell Freezes Over album?
We didn't really look at
it as a body of new work.
It was more of a retrospective
piece of material.
And we look forward to writing some
new material, perhaps in the future.
We can't keep recycling this material,
although it seems to be working just fine.
Don and I were trying to figure
out how to write another song,
and, I mean, really, if we could.
We hadn't written anything
together since, like, '78.
So it was a little awkward at first,
just getting back into the groove.
Yeah. So, we go, one...
OK, here we are starting out at one, two...
During The Long Run album,
there were a lot of sessions with
Don and I where nothing got done.
We were both a little bit
reticent to introduce
our ideas for fear that
they weren't good enough.
So when we sat down to do it again
in '94, my first worry was,
"Is it going to be as
hard as it was in 1978?"
We were sitting around, "What are we
going to write about?" and stuff.
And he said, "Well, I've got
this one title, Get Over It. "
And he sort of proceeded to
tell me what it was that was
pissing him off - all these
people going on television
and everything that's wrong with
them is somebody else's fault.
"I'm just sick of all this whining,
"and so I'm going to write a
song called Get Over It. "
The intro, straight Chuck Berry.
Never play a seventh, right?
So, then I said, "I think
"maybe a Chuck Berry riff would be
a good way to tell that story. "
Time out. Do you want to play the...?
You want to do it on slide?
And then Felder and I will just
play power chords low and high.
And those guys will play
Chuck Berry low and high.
And we can do Get over it.
A couple little of them
slide answer licks is cool.
My favourite thing is when Don
and Glenn co-write stuff.
I like to play guitar to that.
- You want me to sing it, or do you want to wait?
- It's ten to six.
You can sing it at ten
to six or five to six.
- Do it again?
- Yeah, we'll do it twice.
Yeah, you could write it in to the mic.
Captioned for hard of hearing.
'It was really liberating. '
We both walked out of the session
and went, "God, we can still do it.
"I can't believe it. We
just wrote a song together.
"Maybe we can write some more. "
Turn on the tube and what do I see?
A whole lotta people crying,
"Don't blame me"...
That was a really good feeling.
It was a great sort of
artistic reconciliation for us
to have been able to sit down
and write that song together.
Get over it!
Get over it!
All this bitching and
moaning and pitching a fit
Get over it! Get over it!
Get over it!
We did Hell Freezes Over, and
then we went out on the road.
That was the question on everyone's mind -
what if we got back together,
and no one showed up?
What kind of love have you got?
You should be home but you're not
A room full of noise and dangerous boys
Still make you thirsty and hot...
'We set it up to be a three-month reunion.
'I went back to my wife, and I
had two young kids at the time. '
I said, "I don't know if
you're going to recognise me.
"I don't know what this
is going to do to me.
"But I hope I don't change too much.
Hang in there with me. "
Tell all your girlfriends
Your "been around the world" friends
Talk is for losers and fools
Victim of love, I see a broken heart
I could be wrong but I'm not
Victim of love, we're not so far apart
What kind of love have you got?
I was on the side of the stage
once at one of their shows
when they first got back
together, and Jack Nicholson was
euphoric listening to this
band play again, you know?
And he said... "Repertoire. "
What do you want to hear?
One of these nights
ALL: One of these crazy old nights!
One of these nights...
We didn't know how many people
were going to show up for us
to reunite, but people came out in droves.
Somebody's gonna hurt someone
Before the night is through...
We were sold out everywhere.
Audiences were having a fabulous time.
We were having a good time, too.
There's gonna be a heartache tonight
A heartache tonight, I know
Gonna be a heartache tonight
A heartache tonight, I know
Oh, I know.
Heartache, baby!
I listened to the guys, and
Joe Walsh, for example,
is playing better and singing
better than I've ever heard him
play in his life since I've known him.
Hi there, how are ya?
It's been a long time
I didn't have time to really sit around
and miss alcohol or cold turkey
from more cocaine or anything.
And I had to go in front of people
and play and sing sober,
which I hated, at first.
Ooh, that was scary.
Why do we give up our hearts to the past?
And why must we grow up so fast?
Oooh-oooh ooh-h
And all you wishing well
fools with your fortunes
Someone should send you a rose
With love from a friend
Nice to hear from you again
And the storybook comes to a close
Gone are the ribbons and bows
Things to remember, places to go
Pretty maids all in a row
All in a row.
When Joe first got out of rehab
and we started rehearsing,
he was still pretty dark.
But over the course of that first
year getting sober, I think
he found happiness again.
He found a way to be happy.
You look very pretty.
It's OK. Once more. Oh, now, are you ready?
Father, daughter, take one.
We got that family thing
to ground us all now.
It's really sort of our common thread.
We've all got kids.
It changes your life and your
perspective on your work, as well.
So, the tour was so enormously
successful that we sort of
didn't want to give that up, you know?
It's like, "OK, this is good.
I could do this for a while. "
Harry got up
Dressed all in black
Went down to the station
And he never came back
They found his clothing
Scattered somewhere down the track
And he won't be down on
Wall Street in the morning
In a New York minute
- Everything can change
- In a New York minute
Things can get pretty strange...
Doing a concert is a strange
combination of conscious
and subconscious acts.
You're not really thinking
about what you're doing
because you know it so well,
you're just doing it.
On the other hand, you have
to put some emotion into it.
When you've got a crowd
that's cheering you on,
doesn't matter how many times you've
sung the song. You just do it.
Lying in the darkness
Hear the sirens wail
Somebody's going to emergency
Somebody's going to jail
If you find somebody
to love in this world
You better hang on tooth and nail
The wolf is always at the door
In a New York minute
- Everything can change
- In a New York minute
- Things can get a little strange
- In a New York minute
We've played all over the
world, and, probably,
if we could write the script,
it was probably a genius move.
Cos when we come back,
it's bigger than ever.
How much money do you expect to
gross with this European tour?
- I actually haven't added it up, but I will tell you that...
- Good answer.
One thing, the costs of being
a touring rock'n'roll band
in Europe are beyond our
wildest imaginations, but this
band is here in Europe because there
was demand for us to be here.
And it's not nearly as lucrative
as anything we've done before.
It isn't?
Offers started coming in
for us to do more shows,
and I just sort of said,
"Well, book some more.
"It doesn't have to end now.
Book some more.
"Where else can we play?" "Well,
you haven't been in Europe. "
"Well, let's go there. "
Well, I heard some people
talking just the other day
And they said you were
gonna put me on a shelf
Let me tell you I got some news for you
And you'll soon find out it's true
Then you'll have to eat
your lunch all by yourself
Cos I'm al-I-I-Iready gone
And I'm fee-e-eling strong
I will si-i-i-ng this
victory song...
How's it go?
Hoo-hoo-hoo! My, my, hoo-hoo-hoo
Well I know it wasn't
you who held me down...
'We had drawn a line in
the sand and said, '
"No drugs or alcohol during
any band activities. "
And, as a result, we're playing
and singing pretty damn good.
So often times it happens that
we live our lives in chains...
'I think the thing that brings
them together is the harmony. '
When they start hearing that and
how seamless and how perfect, they
get as thrilled as the audiences
do, that, "We can still do this. "
We can't really understand it. It's
just the chemistry that works.
And we gave up trying to understand it.
It just works.
We're just going to do
one verse the New Kid.
One verse the New Kid. OK. Joe's
singing Smuggler's Blues.
- OK.
- I'll just do the beginning of Funk 49.
- And then I'm going to go
pee. - Yeah. - Then I'll go pee.
One, two, three.
Well, I'm a-running the
road trying to loosen my load
I got seven women on my mind
Four that want to own me,
two that want to stone me
One says she's a friend of mine
Take it easy
Take it easy
Don't let the sound of your
own wheels drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don't even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand
And take it easy
Well I'm a-standing on a
corner in Winslow, Arizona
Such a fine sight to see
It's a girl, my Lord, in a flat-bed Ford
Slowin' down to take a look at me
Well, come on, baby
Don't say maybe
I've gotta know if your
sweet love is gonna save me
We may lose and we may win
Though we will never be here again
So open up, I'm climbing in
So take it easy...
All right, boys!
'We ended up going all around
the world in about two years
'and nine months. '
Well, you know we got it ea-a-a-asy
We oughta take it ea-a-a-a-asy.
Thank you, Dublin!
We've learned not to make career
decisions at the end of long tours.
If we break up again, though,
you won't hear about it.
- We'll just go quietly. - And we'll
say we're still together. - Yeah!
They've laughed, cried,
fought, but, most of all,
they have beaten the odds
and are as popular today
as they were in that incredible
summer back in 1972.
It is an honour and a pleasure
to introduce the Eagles.
A lot has been talked about
and speculated about over
the last 27 years about
whether or not we got along.
We got along fine. We just disagreed a lot.
I was not in the trenches
with this particular band,
so I'd like to thank my predecessor,
Randy Meisner, for being there.
'I'm glad that Randy and
Bernie got recognised. '
I think that's appropriate.
Hey, how you doin'?
It's a good feeling.
Looks good on my resume.
I'd really like to thank Don and
Glenn for writing those songs.
Thank you, guys. It makes my
job real easy. Thank you!
Charming outfit, Joe.
I'd like to, again,
thank Don Henley and Glenn Frey for
writing an incredible body of work
that's propelled this band through
20-some-odd years' worth of life.
Thank you, guys.
When a kid first picks up
a guitar or a drumstick,
it's not really to be famous.
It's because that kid wants
to fit in somewhere,
he wants to be accepted, and he
wants to be understood, even.
And so, I like to think of this
award as something that is
acknowledging us not for being
famous, but for doing the work.
And I appreciate all the work that
all these guys behind me have done.
I want to thank Irving Azoff,
without whom we wouldn't be here today.
As I've said before, he may
be Satan, but he's our Satan.
We're in a dog-eat-dog business.
Show me anybody that's going to
be responsible for guiding or
managing an artist's career
that's made too many friends,
and I'm going to show you somebody
that's sold out their artist
and done a crappy job.
So, I was quite proud of Henley's
reference of what he said.
It was more or less, for me, a
validation of a job well done.
A lot of my job was trying to
keep the band from breaking up.
In the '70s, we formed a corporation
called Eagles, Limited.
And that was all-for-one and one-for-all.
Well, it wasn't the three musketeers.
As our friend JD Souther used to
say, "Time passes, things change. "
In talking with Irving about
putting the Eagles back
together in 1994, I said,
"Irving, I'm not going to do it
"unless Don and I make more
money than the other guys. "
"We're the only guys who have done anything
"career-wise in the last 14 years.
"We're the guys that have kept
the Eagles' name alive on radio,
"television and in concert halls. "
So we came up with a deal
that I was happy with,
and Don was happy with,
Timothy was happy with,
Joe was happy with, and Don
Felder was not happy with.
And I called Felder's representative.
And I said, "Hello, Barry.
" This is Glenn Frey.
"I'm sorry you happen to represent
the only asshole in the band,
"but let me tell you something.
"You either sign this agreement
before the sun goes down today,
"or we're replacing Don Felder.
"That's the final deal.
"He signs by sunset, or he's
out of the fucking band. "
Hung up.
So, he signed the deal, and
we started out on the tour.
I didn't sense a great deal of camaraderie.
You hardly saw anybody
if it wasn't walking on the plane
or walking onto the stage.
Everyone thought, "Well,
if we don't get together,
"we won't have problems. "
And I think instead of being able to
sit down and have a beer and talk
about stuff and renew a relationship
with everyone, that independent
isolation really didn't add the
comfort necessary to make it work.
Don Felder was never, ever
satisfied, never, ever happy.
A rock band is not a perfect democracy.
It's more like a sports team.
No one can do anything
without the other guys,
but everybody doesn't get to
touch the ball all the time.
Time went on, and time went on, and
Felder became more and more unhappy.
Couldn't appreciate the amount
of money he was making,
more concerned about how
much money I was making.
If Don Felder really thought about it,
it really was he wanted it to
be a "band" band in the purest
sense of the words, you know, we're
all going to get equal songwriting,
singing, expression stuff, and
this was not a hippie commune.
You know, and everything for them
really goes back to those
two words - song power.
We finally made the decision that we
won't be working with him anymore.
It just broke my heart. It's
not just playing with Joe.
I miss these guys.
But I really missed the
friendship and the music.
Glenn and I, when it comes
time to make band decisions,
usually stick together.
It's difficult for four or five
people to have an equal say.
Here we are 40 years
later, and we're doing OK.
We're one of the few
bands that can say that.
The novelty of the Eagles being back
together and those few new songs
that we had on the Hell Freezes
Over album is one thing.
But we needed to make a record.
Considering that we haven't
made a record in so long,
we spent a good two-and-a-half years
making Long Road Out of Eden.
We finally figured out that we
just needed to do what we do.
This really goes back to the
essence of what we do best,
which is singing and songwriting.
A lot of harmony singing on this album.
ALL: There's a hole in the world tonight
Don't let there be a hole
in the world tomorrow...
Big tragedies like that make
you think, as a parent,
what kind of world is coming up?
What's going to happen next?
What's the world going to be
like when my kids are grown?
After September 11th, our
immediate visceral reaction,
our gut reaction, resulted
in Hole In The World.
Don't let there be a hole
in the world tomorrow...
The Eagles have written and
sung plenty of love songs
over the years, but we've
also written and sung songs
that have to do with what's
going on in the wider world.
We've never shied away
from social commentary.
We think it's part of a rich
tradition that dates all
the way back to medieval times.
And so we still engage in it.
No more walks in the wood
The trees have all been cut down
And where once they stood
Not even a wagon rut
appears along the path...
The writings and the ideas
of Henry David Thoreau
and Ralph Waldo Emerson
had a huge impact on me.
They got me through some very
difficult times in my life,
one being when my father was
stricken with heart disease,
and provided a lot of
spiritual support for me.
When I found out in 1980 that
part of Walden was going to be
destroyed by commercial development,
I decided that was something
I needed to help fight.
So I ended up founding the
Walden Woods Project.
And we are in our 27th year now, and
we've accomplished a great deal.
It's been one of the most rewarding
things that I've ever done.
We and the trees and the way
Back from the fields of play...
The lyrics to that song
were originally a poem
written by a great American
poet named John Hollander.
No more walks in the wood.
Don had this title, Long Road Out of Eden.
Timothy goes over, and he
picks up an acoustic guitar.
And I go over to the keyboards
and Joe grabs a guitar
and Don goes on the drums.
And we start making up this
sort of musical story called
Long Road Out of Eden, a story
of, really, the war in Iraq.
Moon shining down through the palms
Shadows moving on the sand...
And it was, like, the last resort.
It was another opus,
another David Lean movie.
And it's a long road out of Eden.
We finally got through,
and we finally made Long Road Out of Eden.
And we didn't give it to a record company.
We made a deal with Walmart.
This was the first major artist
to do a direct-to-retail release
and bypass the major record companies.
It was phenomenally successful.
The album entered at number one.
It gave, I think, the whole industry
hope that it could find a new
and different way to reach its fans.
They're becoming a much greener company,
and that was important to me.
And the other good thing was that
our fans got 20 songs for 12 bucks.
It was basically a double album, and
they weren't charged double for it.
Don said, "I got a title for a song
- Busy Being Fabulous. "
And I thought, "What a great title. "
I came home to an empty house
And I found your little note...
And then Don wrote, "Don't
wait up for me tonight,
"that was all she wrote. "
Don't wait up for me tonight
And that was all she wrote...
And then we were off on the story.
You were just too busy being fabulous
Too busy to think about us...
Busy Being Fabulous, Don
and Glenn had gotten it
to a certain state, and I came up
with some stuff for the bridge
and tweaked what already existed.
I was very involved in
the Long Road record.
I've always been a lot happier
getting into the entire project,
arranging stuff, producing the
stuff, co-writing the stuff.
Like, Waiting In The Weeds
and Business As Usual
were co-writes with Don.
Getting Steuart Smith in the
band was a real shot in the arm.
He's such a terrific musician.
It's a great solo.
It's like stepping into a space suit.
It is strange to be playing that song.
The reaction is terrific, and
you bask in that excitement.
But I didn't write it.
I'm one part hired gun, but
also one part collaborator.
I'm one of the guitar players.
But I'm not an Eagle.
I don't know what it's like
to be one of those guys.
Three, four!
My kids were looking on the Internet,
and they found this show that
the Eagles had done in 1974.
I was in my office watching TV,
and my kids come in and say,
"Hey, Dad, come here.
"You got to take a look at your hair. "
And one of the songs was How Long.
But if I never see the good old days
Shining in the sun
I'll be doing fine and then some
Tell me how long...
How Long was from my first solo album.
They found that cos Cindy
saw it on YouTube and said,
"Glenn, what's this?"
And he said, "Oh, it's a song of JD's. "
She said, "Well, you
didn't cut it, did you?"
How long, how long Rock yourself to sleep
JD wanted it on his solo album,
so we never recorded it.
My wife said, "Hey, that sounds
like a hit Eagles song. "
Everybody feels all right you
know I heard some poor fool say
Everyone is out there on the loose
Well, I wish I lived in the land
of fools, and no one knew my name
But what you get is not
quite what you choose
Tell me, how long, how long
Woman will you weep?
They are the American band.
Yeah, they pretty much encompassed
the '70s, didn't they?
And took it all in.
That's a long time to still
have a musical impact,
and it's due to this
incredibly crisp, tight,
extraordinarily good record-making
band and the presence of good songs.
But it's also now taken
on this other thing, too,
where it's everybody through
the band wants to remember a
'70s that they may or may not have had.
Good night, baby rock yourself to sleep
Sleep tight, baby rock yourself to sleep
B-B-B-Bye-bye, baby rock
yourself to slee-e-e-ep.
This band could go play
stadiums all over the country,
and people know these songs so intimately.
They last. The songs last.
I have one small plaque on my wall.
It says, "Presented to the Eagles
to commemorate the best-selling
"album of the 20th century,
"with sales in excess of 26 million units. "
That century's gone, so
nobody's going to top that.
What's it like to be an Eagle now?
It's just part of my life.
I do normal things.
I go to the market, and once in a
while, somebody comes up to me.
I don't walk around being an Eagle.
I'm an Eagle when it's time for me to be.
I made sure the dishes were done
before you guys came today.
You know?
He was a hard-headed man
And he was brutally handsome
She was terminally pretty
She held him up and
he held her for ransom
In the heart of the cold, cold city
He had a nasty reputation as a cruel dude
They said he was ruthless,
they said he was crude
They had one thing in
common they were good in bed
She'd say, "Faster, faster,
the lights are turnin' red"
Life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind
Life in the fast lane...
I love everybody in the
band like a brother.
To be part of a real band -
a REAL band -
is something that not all musicians
get to do in their life.
And I'm real lucky to have
that chapter in my book.
Rock'n'roll saved my life. It
changed my life tremendously.
And as Mick Jagger so
famously and eloquently said,
"It's only rock'n'roll, but I like it. "
I think that one of the
reasons that Glenn and I
wanted to write songs is because
rock'n'roll music got us
through junior high and through
high school and those difficult
times when you're searching
for your identity
and wondering who the heck you are,
trying to get girls to notice
you, and wondering why
the football players are doing
so much better than you are.
At the end of the day, it was
and still is about the music.
You know, I've always
been a dreamer...
I regret that I didn't
handle some of the adversity
that the Eagles faced in
the late '70s better.
Fortunately, for me,
I've had another chance to be the
leader of the Eagles, another
chance to be Don's partner and do
this work again and play this music.
And in this second run, I think
I've done a pretty good job
of keeping the peace and keep the
band together, keep everybody happy.
So here we are.
Still doing it.
You gotta take it to the limit
One more time.
Thank you.
That's it! That's it!
'We wanted longevity.
'It wasn't a hobby for us.
It wasn't a game.
'It wasn't a pleasant diversion.
It was a life.
'It was a calling. It was a career. '
It was worth it.
We went to China last year.
We're still breaking new
ground 40 years later.
Back in the late '70s,
Neil Young sang a song about
the emerging punk ethic.
And the pivotal line in that song was,
"It's better to burn out
than it is to rust. "
And I'm not sure that even Neil himself
subscribed to that sentiment, but
I don't see rust as a bad thing.
I have an old 1962 John Deere
tractor that's covered with rust,
but it runs like a top.
You know, the inner workings are just fine.
You better let somebody love you
Let somebody love you
You better let somebody love...
'To me, that rust symbolises
all the miles driven
'and all the good work done and
all the experiences gained. '
Before it's too-o-o-o
'From where I sit, the
rust looks pretty good. '
When somebody is around 40 years,
it means they've got something,
something that people want.
And the Eagles have that.
To me, the Eagles really expressed a mood.
California was the place of dreams.
It was a time of limitless possibilities.
I think they were a defining
moment in the rock'n'roll world
that I love.
You couldn't really love the
Eagles music and be an Eagles fan
and actually know them and not
aspire to greatness yourself.
I'm not really into legacies. People
talk to me, "What's your legacy?"
I'm here now.
I'm doing what I want to do, and
I'm trying to make stuff happen.
I see the Eagles in the same way.
They're not in the '70s.
They're in 2012 and 2013.
And whatever they're
doing now artistically,
that's what's important.
- In the long run
- In the long run
We can handle some resistance
If our love is a strong one
Is a strong one
People talkin' about us
they got nothin' else to do
When it all comes down
we will still come through
- In the long run
- Ooh, I want to tell you
It's a long run
You know I don't understand why
you don't treat yourself better
Do the crazy things that you do
Cos all the debutantes...