Anyone who is even mildly familiar with country or rock music will know one song for sure⏤“Hotel California” by the American band Eagles. We know it so well that we sing it like we wrote the song!
And, after all the passionate singing, if anyone asks us about the band, a majority of us wouldn’t even have a clue about who the band members are. We just love the song and are glad that a group of musicians from a band called the Eagles shared such a gem with the world.
But, today, it’s time to get familiar with the people behind the song and the band they represent.
Yes, there are just too many band members to get to know, but that’s okay, just skim through a few details of their lives, achievements, and contributions. That’s the least we can do for all the times we’ve pretended to be a part of their band while singing “Hotel California.” Who knows? Once you get to know the band’s rich history, you might sing it even better!
Table of Contents
Band Formation and Founding Members
The Eagles formed their band in 1972 with Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Bernie Leadon, and Randy Meisner as the founding members. All four musicians were backup players for American singer Linda Ronstadt at some point before they formed the Eagles. Don Henley and Glenn Frey met while working with Ronstadt and decided to form a band on their own. When they informed Ronstadt about their decision, she suggested Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner. The suggestions helped complete the band, and the Eagles were born. 1
New Band Members
The band is known for playing a significant role in establishing country rock as a mainstream music genre. Don Felder joined the band in 1974, and a year later, Leadon was replaced by Joe Walsh, and soon after, in 1977, Randy Meisner quit the band and was replaced by Timothy B. Schmit. After Frey’s passing in 2016, his son Deacon Frey was added to the band in 2017 and, in the same year, country music singer Vince Gill, joined the band.2 Deacon Frey toured with the band for nearly four years and announced his exit from the band recently.
Complete List of Members of the Eagles Band
|Don Henley||Drummer and lead vocalist||1972–Present|
|Glenn Frey||Lead singer and frontman||1972–2015|
|Randy Meisner||Bassist and vocalist||1972–1977|
|Bernie Leadon||Guitar, mandolin, banjo and vocalist||1972–1975|
|Joe Walsh||Bassist and vocals||1975–Present|
|Don Felder||Lead Guitarist||1974–2001|
|Timothy B Schmit||Bassist and vocalist||1977–Present|
|Deacon Frey||Lead singer and frontman||2017–2022|
|Vince Gill||Lead guitarist and vocalist||2017–Present|
Journey of the Eagles
The band recorded their debut album Eagles in 1972, which was a million seller.3 But, the Eagles disbanded in 1980 after recording five more albums. At this point, the Eagles was made up of Healy, Frey, Walsh, Felder, and Schmit. After the dissolution of the band, the artists pursued solo careers that were both successful and turbulent.
Fourteen years later, all five members reunited for a hugely successful comeback in 1994. Felder, however, exited the group in 20014 and the rest of the band members toured for 15 more years before Frey’s death in 2016.5 The surviving members have continued to tour with the newer additions until recently, in 2022.
Top Songs by the Eagles
And finally, we leave you with a few all-time classics by the Eagles. The band created music that encompassed bluegrass, country, and rock’n’roll. The band dropped several chart toppers and other unforgettable gems throughout their career. Some of them are listed below:
Eagles Number One Hits6
“Best of My Love” (1975)
“One Of These Nights” (1975)
“New Kid In Town” (1977)
“Hotel California” (1977)
“Heartache Tonight” (1979)
10 Greatest Eagles Songs of All Time7
- “Take It Easy” (1972)
- “Desperado” (1973)
- “Peaceful Easy Feeling” (1972)
- “Already Gone” (1974)
- “Lyin’ Eyes” (1975)
- “Life in the Fast Lane” (1976)
- “I Can’t Tell You Why” (1979)
- “The Long Run” (1979)
- “Tequila Sunrise” (1973)
- “Best of My Love” (1974)
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1. Hunter, J. (n.d.). the Eagles | Members, Songs, & Facts. Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.britannica.com/topic/the-Eagles
2. Hoskison, M. T. T. (2022, April 26). What to know about The Eagles 2022 “Hotel California” tour. Nashville Tennessean. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://eu.tennessean.com/story/entertainment/music/2022/04/25/eagles-tour-2022-hotel-california-album-orchestra-jim-ed-norman/7439112001/
3. White, D. (2018, August 8). Eagles. LiveAbout. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.liveabout.com/history-of-eagles-p2-4086391
4. Meisfjord, E. (2022, May 19). The real reason Don Felder was fired from The Eagles. Grunge.Com. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.grunge.com/233533/the-real-reason-don-felder-was-fired-from-the-eagles/
5. Whitaker, S. (2022, January 18). 6 Years Ago Today: The Eagles’ Glenn Frey Dies at 67. Taste of Country. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://tasteofcountry.com/remembering-glenn-frey-dead-five-years/
6. Book, R. (2015, June 28). The Eagles’ 5 No. 1 Hits May Surprise You (Hint: “Already Gone” Ain’t One). Music Times. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.musictimes.com/articles/41830/20150628/the-eagles-five-no-1-hits-may-surprise-hint-already-gone-aint-one.htm
7. Browne, D., Martoccio, A., Greene, A., Grow, K., & Weingarten, C. (2019, September 22). The 40 Greatest Eagles Songs. Rolling Stone. Retrieved June 21, 2022, from https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-lists/the-40-greatest-eagles-songs-779880/13-tequila-sunrise-1973-780041/