July 13

49 Years Ago, Linda Ronstadt Unleashed The Eagles

Different artists reach their “break” in many different but unique ways indeed. The same could be said about the famous band, The Eagles. Believe it or not, they got their start by playing for superstar Linda Ronstadt.

The members, Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Bernie Leadon, and Randy Meisner were all veterans from their various bands during the thrive of country-rock in the early ’70s of South California music. Linda Ronstadt had her eye for these four fellows and handpicked them to be her tour band for her live gigs and shows.

How Linda Ronstadt Picked the Promising Musicians

Before we get to The Eagles’ pinnacle of success, let us first unravel the member’s individuality that rendered them worthy in the eyes of Linda Ronstadt

Bernie Leadon was eyed by Ronstadt because he played alongside the Flying Burrito Brothers for her Silk Purse tour in 1971. It was was a combination of all-star country-rock members.

For Don Henley, he was the drummer for Shiloh, a group Kenny Rogers discovered and brought to Los Angeles for a record.

Glenn Frey was discovered by Ronstadt when he was working as a duo for “Longbranch Pennywhistle with J.D. Souther.”

Lastly, Randy Meisner was in Rick Nelson’s Stone Canyon band when Ronstadt drafted him for The Eagles.

How the Eagles Started Ascending

When the band got together to play as the backing group for Linda Ronstadt in 1971, a “special chemistry” was instantly forged among them which was evident during their debut concert in Disneyland on July 12.

Soon after that, they approached Ronstadt to split off as her backing group in order to form The Eagles. Even though their career path accompanying Ronstadt fleeted quickly, the four first originals they made as a group was well recorded in Linda Ronstadt’s self-titled album. But they got past that and immediately produced several originals over the years.

Today, they are known to be one of the most successful bands specializing in rock music. They began their independent journey as a band with the release of their debut album on June 1, 1972. “Take it Easy” composed by Frey and his neighbor, “Witchy Woman” and “Peaceful, Easy Living” became ultimate hits. They snagged the Platinum record as they reach Billboard’s charts ranking #22 in United States’ Pop Albums Chart.

The Eagles may have soared down the heights over the years but what’s remarkable about them is how they found their big break soaring the skies of fame and glory after supporting a lead star like Linda Ronstadt.


Linda Ronstadt, The Eagles

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