The Eagles Interview
The Eagles Interview

Glenn Frey

You know, we’re all very generous people. We’re generous with other people and I think part of what this documentary has taught me is that I need to be a little more generous with myself. And you’ve got to look at yourself and you’ve got to look at your past and you have to accept who you are and what you did, be thankful that no one got hurt, say you’re sorry for the things that you did that were wrong and get on with it.

I feel that we’re pretty comfortable with who we are up here now. It didn’t take me long to sort of get over that whole, ‘Oh god, I looked like I smoked a joint before that interview. Oh god.’ You know, I don’t think about that stuff too much and I don’t think other people should either. Like I said, everyone should be as generous with themselves as they are with other people.

Timothy B. Schmit

Well, let’s not forget that we had a lot of fun as well.

Don Henley

And a lot of it is not in the documentary… [Laughter]

Timothy B. Schmit

Which is a good thing.
Don, you must be in a very pleased position looking back in retrospect at The Eagles. I mean, they’ve reached every goal that they wanted to. But as an environmentalist, you must be an angry man these days? How do you feel living in a country that pollutes the world more than the rest of the world?

Don Henley

We pollute the world with poisonous television shows [Laughter]… and you know, with toxic entertainment. I don’t want to dwell on this because it’s not part of this, but when I was younger, I would get angry about these things. I’ve learned to be stoic about it now, because you can’t change things overnight. I’m still hopeful, but I’m not as idealistic as I once was. Things happen, change happens very slowly and I do the best I can on that front. We work hard and I work on other organisations that work on it. This is a discussion that could take several hours, but I’m not angry. I do fear for the future and for my children in the future, because the news is not good on the climate front and on the environmental front, but you have to get up everyday and you have to be hopeful and you have to be optimistic and you have to do what you can.

I think we’re all trying to teach our kids to be responsible citizens and put something back. You know, that’s one of the legacies we want to give our children: contribute something. Don’t just take. Contribute something. As Glenn said in the song, be part of something good. Leave something good behind. So that’s mostly the attitude now, you know, you can’t watch the news everyday. You just can’t.
Your concert, which was recorded at the Capital Centre in Washington during the 1977 Hotel California tour, is in the Deluxe DVD set. You’ve waited thirty years to put that out, because presumably, you didn’t think you had the technology to get it up to the standard that you like your releases to have. Was that the case?

Glenn Frey

Actually, I just felt that we had overdone the live thing. We have done a lot of live stuff. Live from Melbourne was a big DVD for us and so I felt that we had done that, but then we found out that we had eight songs that were filmed, from beginning to end, two nights in a row in Washington. We started watching the movie and we’d seen the great things, you know, Joe playing Rocky Mountain Way. So there was a lot of this footage and so I said, ‘Let’s just take a look at everything.’ So, I took a look at everything and it looked pretty good and it sounded pretty good.

It was nice to be able to mix it now and be able to spread everything out and massage things a little, but we didn’t have to fix too much. And to tell you the truth, I was pretty impressed with the band and how well five guys played live with no earpiece monitors and none of the audio tricks we have now. We played pretty well those two nights and so that’s in the bonus DVD.
The part that I really enjoyed was the Linda Ronstadt footage and how you pay tribute to her for having been an influence on the start of your career as a band and individuals. How do you feel about Linda Ronstadt not having been acknowledged by the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame and Museum? Did you try and get Linda to speak to the camera for the film? Do you think you would have found each other without her at the Troubadour at that time?

Glenn Frey

Well, there was certainly a lot of serendipity involved at the beginning of the Eagles and it was interesting that the night that I got hired to join Linda’s band, I was sitting at the bar in the Troubadour, John Boylan was there and walking up on the other side was Don Henley to introduce himself, to say hi to John and to say that he’d sent a song to John and Linda. And so that just happened one night at the Troubadour bar and then Don and I got to play in her band and we were roomies together. You know, we started talking about our dreams and what we wanted to do. We were very lucky and then of course, we really wanted to have our own band.

Then Linda helped us get the guys. She was the one who said, ‘You should get Bernie Leadon’. And so we brought him out to Disneyland for some shows that we were doing on graduation night and we met with him and talked with him. A couple of weeks later, we replaced the bass player for a weekend and brought him up with Randy Meisner, and so he came up and played with Linda and we could talk with him as well. It was really important.

Now, Linda didn’t want to be filmed and interviewed for the DVD, but we were lucky that we were able to find these interviews with her. I mean then of course, they found footage of Don and I playing with her at the Troubadour and there’s other footage of us with all the Eagles playing with her. She was a pivotal person in our lives.

Don Henley

As was John Boylan. They were both very generous with us. They helped us form this group and I have nothing but good things to say about her. She’s retired now, basically.

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Content updated: 21/09/2019 23:56

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