40 Years Ago: ‘The Eagles Live’ Released


It was 40 years ago Saturday (November 7th, 1980) the Eagles Live — the Eagles' final album before their 14-year-split was released. The concert collection, which followed the band's 1979 The Long Run chart-topper, was culled from the band's three October 1976 shows at The Forum in L.A. — which featured original bassist Randy Meisner — along with July 1980 performances from Long Beach and Santa Monica, California.

Following the wrap of The Long Run's tour, Glenn Frey, who was not on speaking terms with the band, recorded his overdubs for the set in L.A., while Don Henley worked with producer Bill Szymczyk (pronounced: SIMM-zick), Joe Walsh, Don Felder, and Timothy B. Schmit to get the tapes in order for release. The band turned down a $2 million offer by Asylum Records to record two new songs for the double album.

Eagles Live peaked at Number Six on the Billboard 200, but only spent six weeks in the Top 10. In early-1981, the album's lone single, an acoustic cover of Steve Young's "Seven Bridges Road," made it to Number 21.

Timothy B. Schmit, who was the last new Eagle to join in 1978, told us that the emotions in playing in any major band pretty much run the gamut from horrible to heavenly: ["All bands have their, it's like a, y'know, kindergarten class in a way. And there's a lot of, y'know, ego stuff and there's a lot of moaning and groaning, there's a lot of ill ease, there's a lot of camaraderie — there's a lot of everything."] SOUNDCUE (:14 OC: . . . lot of everything)

Don Felder explained to us that the Eagles came to an end in 1980 due to sheer exhaustion, as opposed to any one particular reason: ["When we were trying to get in to finishing certain records, like The Long Run, and we had the tour already booked, and we had to finish the tracks and get 'em mixed, and done, and out — the pressure and that little pressure cooker to get those things done was really, kind of, high pressured. And we never really ever took enough time off in between one leg of a project and the next. We were just literally working ten-and-a-half months out of the year — either writing in the studio, touring, whatever it was. Once we got that momentum going, everyone, just, y'know, kept pushing."] SOUNDCUE (:35 OC . . .  y'know kept pushing)

The tracklisting to 1980's Eagles Live is: "Hotel California," "Heartache Tonight," "I Can't Tell You Why," "The Long Run," "New Kid in Town," "Life's Been Good," "Seven Bridges Road,' 'Wasted Time," "Take It to the Limit," "Doolin-Dalton (reprise II)," "Desperado," "Saturday Night," "All Night Long," "Life In The Fast Lane," and "Take It Easy."

Don Felder On Eagles Pressures :

Timothy B. Schmit On Being In The Eagles :