Tuesday, February 26, 2013

What I Discovered After Watching The New Eagles Documentary

• I still think their recorded output is fantastic

• Randy Meisner has morphed into Jackie Coogan

• I once thought Glenn Frey & Don Henley were assholes. I was wrong. They are fucking assholes

• Don Felder is one helluva guitar player

• Bernie Leadon has morphed into Jackie Coogan

Favorite moment:

Don Henley explaining he flunked music theory in college because he was an English major.

"I made an F."

Professor Henley, ladies and gentlemen.

"I made an F."

Thank you. As you were.


Chris Collins said...

I haven't seen it yet, but I kind of agree with all of the above.

Side note- I LOVE Don Henley's solo output. I kind of hate myself for that.

Sal Nunziato said...

"The Heart Of The Matter" always killed me, but then I hear "Dirty Laundry" and I want to strangle him all over again.

Gene Oberto said...

I don't know why but "My Thanksgiving" holds a particularly special spot in my music hierarchy despite the F.U. I got mine and I still want more attitude of Henley.

Robin said...

Enjoyed hearing them talk about the Beatles,history with Frey/Seger, Kenny Rogers/Henley.

What I took away:

Frey & Henley are still so smug.

Glenn Frey actually sounded humble (!) when speaking about songcraft and Jackson Browne. (As he should be). This was the best part for me.

Linda R of the astonishing voice (I don't mean her interpretive skill or lack thereof-just the voice she was born with- one of the few in pop that's truly round and operatic, so pure, flexible), was as humble talent-wise and as professionally generous, as Frey and Henley were vain, proud, smug and ungenerous.

I love Joe Walsh forever. Felder is indeed amazing. I adore Randy Meisner's voice.

I do really like some of those songs (Tequila Sunrise, Pretty Maids All in a Row, Take It to the Limit), but with reservation something keeps me at arm's length, they lack poignancy for me, I guess. Still they're good songs and I completely get why they are so popular. It was well worth watching for pop/rock music fans.

Anonymous said...

Watched and enjoyed the whole thing (although the clips of Walsh in his Lost Years were positively brutal... so glad he pulled it together.)

And when it was over I dusted off my copy of....

No, I didn't. Because that's enough Eagles to last me a few years. Those songs are sandblasted into my brain and I don't need to hear most of them. I have soft spots for their cover of Old '55, and I like "I Can't Tell You Why", although I can't tell you why, exactly.

Ronstadt, on the other hand, still pops up in the shuffle. Heart Like A Wheel and Hasten Down The Wind, and that great old single Long Long Time. I read somewhere that she thought she oversang it but it still nails me pretty much every time.

stivseed said...

I still have`n`t seen the doc, but I`ve always struggled with loving the music while knowing they were people(Henley/Frey) that I`d NEVER want to hang with.This just reinforces that knowledge.

wardo said...

Most of the Eagles' output irritates me (and has since it was current) but there are a small handful of songs on Hotel California that are wonderful. And as I enjoy any well-done music doc, I'm looking forward to seeing this one day.

Steve P. said...

I thought I had an idea of how terribly they treated Don Felder, but it was far beyond what I'd imagined. And worst of all, it's not even a he said-he said deal- Glen's own version of events is more damning than anything Felder could have said. Say what you want about Frey and Henley and their talents- Don Felder wrote the music for Hotel California. THat right there is some epic stuff.

steve simels said...

Please -- I will brook no historical revisionism on the Eagles. A horrible, horrible, HORRIBLE band, despite the fact that individual members were talented.

I enjoyed "Take It Easy" at the time, less so in the intervening years, and absolutely loathe everything else they ever recorded, until "Get Over It," the reunion single that is actually a great pissed off rock n roll record. "I'd like to find your inner child and kick his little ass" indeed.

Let me repeat -- a horrible, horrible, HORRIBLE band.

That said, I can't wait to see the documentary, which I have no doubt will be entertaining.

William Repsher said...

Don Felder's book is a pretty good read -- it has the ring of truth, and he doesn't come off in any way bitter. I've come to appreciate the songs he obviously wrote the music for: Victim of Love, Disco Strangler, Those Shoes. It's a shame he and Henley didn't connect more as songwriters, because it was clear, especially with the song Hotel California, that his music really brought out a different side of his lyric writing.

Haven't seen the doc (which I've heard doesn't come out on DVD until late April), but a guy at work asked me to buy a copy of that last 2-disc greatest hits package they put out (since I have Amazon Prime and was ordering something else anyway, cough Louis Prima and Keely Smith Live in Vegas, cough). I couldn't believe how many of those songs still register, and whoever put that package together really nailed key album tracks like James Dean, The Last Resort, Wasted Time, The Sad Cafe, etc.

Say what you want about Henley, but when the time came to stand alone, he wasn't putting out stuff like The Heat Is On, You Belong to the City and Smuggler's Blues.

Anonymous said...

I am an unashamed and unapologetic Eagles fan. ave been since I was a kid and bought that first greatest hits with my allowance back in ’'76. The movie was pretty good, the music great, but man oh man are Henley and Frey the smug assholes they have always been reported to be.

Then again I suspect so many of my favorite artists may be exactly the same so I have never been big on having to meet them. Wouldn't it suck if Bruce was an asshole? Hopefully I will never find out...

I watched both the Eagles and the Mumford docs the same day. What strikes me is how little variation there is in the Mumford sound compared to the varied, but always recognizable Eagles. A little tempo chanGe please fellas.

buzzbabyjesus said...

The Eagles are "country" Foreigner. I admire the craft and understand the mass appeal, but I have not, and will never own one of their albums. I grew up in The Hotel California, escaped to the East Coast, and am not going back.

James A. Gardner said...

Liked the first three albums quite a lot at the time. They helped fill the huge gap left by the Byrds and original Burrito Bros., and I really dug the vocals. Most of that music hasn't weathered very well with me, altho I will admit that my opinion has been colored by what they've released since, their radio ubiquity, and most everything about Henley and Frey.
One thing looking at their discography impresses on me is that I still consider, far and away, the best thing they ever did was written by Gene Clark.
Another is that The Long Run is as skimpy and sub-par an album as a major act ever foisted off on its public and that Otis Redding's estate ought to be getting the royalties for the title song.

Dave said...

Not a fan of the band but I never came close to not watching every minute of the documentary, which was clearly an authorized "biography" but not hagiography.

Sonny said...

Yeah, Glenn and Don are definitely assholes. My favorites were always Bernie and Randy, "I Wish You Peace" (smarmy lounge music, according to the Toxic Duo) and "Midnight Flyer" are two of my favorite Eagles songs. I never want to hear that fucking POS Long Run album again. It gave me worse nightmares than Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch in Wizard of Fuckin' Oz. Still, Henley's "Building The Perfect Beast" spends a lot of time on my stereo...shit!

Anonymous said...

And Bob Seger has morphed into Colonel Sanders.

Anonymous said...

But "Ramblin' Gamblin' Man" is finger lickin' good, I've always loved that tune. And it is kinda cool that young (and perhaps pre-asshole?) GF sang on it.

Anonymous said...

Most everything in these comments is quite worthless. What a great run The Eagles had. Must have been a hell of a ride!

Anonymous said...

Yes, Don Henley is a hypocritical asshole in my book! I appreciate the resources in keeping Walden Woods alive, but dude, let people post your music on YouTube!!! Some of that stuff is over 30 years old! You and Bob Dylan need to stop being dicks about letting people post your stuff!!!!