Eagles – Documentary

Why must we damn thee based on pop culture’s (Lord Jeffrey Lebowski’s) opinion?  I have spent the majority of this thirty nine year old life damning (the) Eagles based on pop culture’s vague interpretation of such.  (Note, no “the” in front of “Eagles”.)

eaglesdoc800_t268Let’s assume Don Henley and Glenn Frey –and to some degree, Timothy B. Schmit–carry the brunt of the weight with pop culture’s opinion that (the) Eagles suck–they do not. They have written some mighty fine American tunes.

I willingly viewed part one of the recent documentary film on (the) Eagles expecting to hate more about Henley and Frey’s egos.  Instead, I viewed them as focused individual artists  in tune with the times to survive based on their surroundings and opportunities to succeed.  Eagles’ musical roots are traced direclty to that era’s peers: Linda Ronstadt, Jackson Browne, Warren Zevon, and country-rock’s trailblazers, the Flying Burrito Brothers and The Byrds–which the documentary clearly outlines.  Each helping and working with one another to bring Californian cosmic Americana, country-rock, to the 1970s mainstream from hard work and determination.

Part one focuses on (the) Eagles ascent, beginnings, successes, and their amazing six record run from 1972-1980.  Included is a ridiculous, eye-opening account by the two artists responsible for (the) Eagles self-titled debut in 1972 for David Geffen’s first label, Asylum Records.  The screw-up by Geffen and the press operators, along with Geffen’s shrug of “whatever” is worth the film’s price of admission.   There is no love lost between Geffen and Frey and Henley which each era of the film hops within and dances around to a larger degree.

Part two of the documentary focuses on 1994 to present, when hell froze over and they regrouped. That era is a business write off and a capitalist gain for (the) Eagles.

If I were to include the latter half’s greedy actions by Frey and Henley to seize majority control on (the) Eagles while shorting Don Felder, Joe Walsh, Timothy B. Schmit and anyone else along for their reunion rides, it would chop this documentary’s important aspects about their ascent to bits.  Part two confirms and loosely dances around whatever we have been led to believe about the Eagles.

Sacred Heart of Lord LebowskiDon Felder is at legal and emotional odds–lawsuit speaking–against Glenn Frey and Don Henley.  Randy Meisner, one of Eagles’ founding members, could give a shit–can you blame him?  Joe Walsh–once a sidekick to Keith Moon and John Belushi (some of part one’s funnier moments as well)– is now sober; to some degree it’s because (the) Eagles demanded he get clean for their second act.   Bernie Leadon, another founding member responsible for their truer country-folk touches on the first two records, regrets pouring a beer on Glenn Frey’s head in the 70s before quitting.  Don’t worry, Bernie, no one really cares about the Eagles from 1980 to present.  And Timothy B. Schmit… why must we listen to him say anything about his role in Eagles?  Too much of Schmit in part 2 for my liking.

What anyone might learn once again from another entertaining rock documentary is that there are no closures in rock n’ roll aside from death, lawsuit judegments, reunion tours, and taxes.  In (the) Eagles case, man, they did write and record some killer songs from 1972 til 1980 to turn your bullshit indie nosed poor ass up to.

I want all of you to eat a Rockford, IL, sized dick.

“Eagles” rock.

AW  |  Andy Whorehall

Andy Whorehall

 

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