"We Play What Our Fans Want."
Author: Staff Writer
Publication: Liverpool Echo
Date: June 9, 2006
Abstract: The Eagles talk about topics like their audience, longevity, and lifestyle changes.
THE Eagles are back on the road. And, regardless of their personal situations, it's a place they love to be.
One of the world's most successful bands are now one of the most legendary in the live arena - and their Everest-sized pile of ticket receipts prove it.
"I'm really excited about going out," admits guitarist/singer Glenn Frey, who now makes up one quarter of the super group, along with drummer/vocalist Don Henley, bassist Timothy B Schmit and lead guitarist Joe Walsh.
"We've had a five-month break from playing live and we're not going to do it long enough to get tired of it."
Joe Walsh, a self-described "old rocker" agrees that the band truly comes alive on stage.
"It has always been the case," he says. "There's been tense times, mostly not our fault, but we're still together, we're brothers and when we come together, it's very focused energy."
Still, he can't quite believe their continued popularity. "I can't really see where we fit in," he laughs. "Now, there's a whole new generation who weren't around when our records were out and it's kind of refuelled our audience."
And that audience expects the hits - like Hotel California, Peaceful Easy Feeling and The Long Run - which the guys don't mind delivering.
"I'm not saying there's a right way or a wrong way," argues Glenn. "There are some artists who are resistant to their past. Don and I have always felt that those are the songs that people truly love. I may have played Take It Easy 370 times since the last time I was in England.
"But," he adds, "there's a bunch of guys there who just got turned on to our music and have never seen us perform. And does that mean we don't do Hotel California?"
He shakes his head: "People want to hear those songs."
The modern-day set also includes plenty of chances for the individuals to show off their solo skills. Since the group disbanded in 1980 (nine years after forming in Hollywood), all the members have had a crack at stardom by themselves.
Don Henley probably succeeded best, writing the mega-hit The Boys Of Summer and several platinum albums. Glenn even tried his hand at acting, starring in a short-lived television detective series (it lasted just a single episode), as well as a cameo appearance in Miami Vice and a supporting role in Jerry Maguire.
Now the foursome are more focused on their families than living like rock-and-rollers.
Not surprisingly, Glenn's 13-year-old son is a budding guitar player. "Our kids don't have a concept of The Eagles," Glenn laughs. "If they do, it's not that big of a deal to them. My son was more impressed when I introduced him to David Gilmour (from Pink Floyd)."
After a long battle with drink and drugs, Joe says just to be playing again is reward enough.
"It's kind of uncharted waters, because I was so crazy in the 70s and 80s," he says. "I wasn't sure I was going to live this long. But I got that straightened out. "We hadn't really planned what to do when we got into our mid-to-late 50s," he continues. "I'm not going to dress like David Lee Roth when I'm 80. But we don't want to rest on our laurels. As long as we can do this good, we'll do it.
"One of the great allies you can have in your career as an artist is the imagination of your audience.The less people knew about The Eagles, the more they imagined. The only way anybody can find anything out about us is to come to the show."
You heard him.