For a while now, I’ve had a running joke with a friend or two of mine: I hate the Eagles.
It started one day when I went on a rant about songs I wouldn’t care if I NEVER, EVER heard again in the sum of my days. “Hotel California” was one of those numbers.
Recently, I set out to disprove myself. I don’t really hate anything. Hate is a strong word. Well, I might hate liver. Eww. But sometimes when something causes a strong reaction within us it’s worth reexamining. So, I said to my friend, Stephanie, “I challenge you to make me a mix CD of the Eagles, complete with ‘Hotel California.’ I will listen patiently and with no bias.”
Stephanie happens to be a mix tape master. This reexamination was prompted by an Eagles reference, actually. We were talking about how some people don’t know how lucky they are and how they should stop pissing and moaning about EVERY LITTLE THING EVER. They will do this, as you may know. “Get OVER IT!” I exclaimed. “Okay, The Eagles,” Stephanie chided.
“Oh, that is The Eagles, isn’t it?” Indeed. It’s also a brilliant number, and a good way to start a mix CD of the Eagles. It brightened my morning commute. (Disclaimer: I did not say those negative nellies were colleagues.)
When Rachael was seven or eight, she happened to love “End of the Innocence” “The Boys of Summer” and “Last Worthless Evening.” While a man’s solo career can vary greatly from his work with a rock band, it’s hard to dispute that you don’t like the Eagles when you, and your inner child, loved Don Henley.
I took this into heavy consideration. Then, I heard “Love Will Keep Us Alive.” I’d chocked that song up to Fleetwood Mac or some such thing. I was always fond of it but never realized it was The Eagles. But what really got me was, “Learn to Be Still.” In it, he sings, “I’m asking, ‘how do I get out of here?’ or ‘Where do I fit in?'” It’s been a resounding question in my life lately.
Somewhere in the middle of the mix was this:
An acoustic version of Hotel California. I knew it was coming. I tried not to cringe. And by the chorus, with windows rolled down, I was belting it out.
Okay, not really. But I did enjoy it. By the next day, I held my right hand up in front of Steph and said, “I, Rachael Goetzke, not only LIKE the Eagles…but…I think I might love them.”
Is there a band you’ve had a love-hate relationship with? Do tell me all about it.
Be well and keep listening,