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Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Happy Birthday Don Henley

(Click on the links to enjoy the music)

Born Donald Hugh Henley on this day back in 1947. 
He was born in Gilmer, Texas and grew up in Linden, Texas. In 1970 he moved to Los Angeles to record an album with his early band Shiloh. Kenny Rogers produced the album (included was a Henley penned song 'God is Where You Find Him').

Not long after the release of the Shiloh album Henley met Glenn Frey and they both ended up in Linda Ronstadt's backing band. They both played on Ronstadt's self-titled 1972 album released on Capitol Records and other musicians who worked on the album included Randy Meisner and Bernie Leadon and in 1971 they all got together and formed The Eagles.
Leadon, Henley, Meisner and Frey.

1st June 1972 saw the release of their debut album. It had been proceeded a month before by the Jackson Browne penned 'Take It Easy'. Actually Browne had begun work on the song in 1971 for his own self-titled debut album but was having trouble completing it. He gave it to Glenn Frey who was his neighbour and he finished the second verse of it. The single would peak at #12 on the Billboard Hot 100. 'Witchy Woman' would follow into the charts at #9 and the third single from the album 'Peaceful Easy Feeling' only made it to #22.

'Desperado' was released in 1973 and the two singles released from it didn't do so well on the chart, 'Tequila Sunrise' (#64) and 'Outlaw Man' (#59).

'On the Border' was the third album release by the Eagles. It arrived on the scene in March 1974. 'Already Gone' (#32), 'James Dean' (#77), and 'Best of My Love' (which became their first #1) were all released as singles.

'One of These Nights' came out in 1975 and was their first #1 Album and three Top 5 singles (including a #1) were taken from it. 'One of These Nights' (#1),'Lyin' Eyes'  (#2) and 'Take It To The Limit' (#4). 'One of These Nights' would also be the a major hit in the UK peaking at #8.

1976 would prove to be a great year for the band with the release of their fifth studio album 'Hotel California'. It was a #1 album in many countries (though in the UK it peaked at #2). 'New Kid In Town' was a #1 single in 1976 as was the release of the title track in 1977. The third and final single from the album, 'Life in the Fast Lane', only made it to #11 and didn't chart in the UK.

In 1978 they released a holiday single, 'Please Come Home For Christmas' that peaked at #18 in the US and only #30 in the UK.

Three years later 'The Long Run' was released and would be their last studio album together until 2007's 'Long Road Out of Eden'. They did get together to record a Live album, 'When Hell Freezes Over' ('Hotel California' from the album) in 1994 and began touring again until 1996.

The band continue to tour to date though with several line up changes.

After first break up of the band, Henley went on to have some success as a solo artist and as a collaborator with various artists.

His debut solo album 'I Can't Stand Still' (released in 1982) included the single 'Johnny Can't Read', which was a minor hit. Also on the album was 'Nobody's Business' - co-written with Bob Seger and J.D. Souther. 'Dirty Laundry' though was the big hit single from the album peaking at #3 in the US.

'Building the Perfect Beast' managed to climb a little higher than the debut solo album peaking at #13 and #14 in the UK. The album was released in 1984 and contained the hit singles 'Boys of Summer' (#5), 'All She Wants To Do Is Dance' (#9), 'Not Enough Love in the World' (#34) and 'Sunset Grill' (#22).

1989's 'End of the Innocence' album was a big success reaching #8 in the US and #14 in the UK. A number of singles from the album gained chart success, the title track - co-written by Bruce Hornsby (#8), 'The Last Worthless Evening (#22), 'The Heart of the Matter' (#21), 'New York Minute' (#48).

In 1981 he gained a #6 hit alongside Stevie Nicks with 'Leather and Lace'. And also a #2 hit in 1992 with Patty Smyth, 'Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough'.  

Eagles live at The Hydro Glasgow 31st May 2014.

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