Standing on the Corner in Winslow Arizona …

In a decent life you get to do many things. Some are special when you experience them, some are special in retrospect, some never rise beyond memory and most, mercifully, are quickly forgotten ... 1973 was an interesting year for me, it was my second year of reading Mechanical Engineering at University and included a six month hiatus for 'Industrial Training' which took place at Rolls-Royce in Bristol, England. Joining me in this latter endeavor was a motley crew of nerds, would be nerds and obvious misfits. One such misfit, I shall call him 'Rollie', for that was his name, introduced me to the wonderful worlds of J.J. Cale, The Doors and live concert going. Bristol was blessed with a great concert venue, Colston Hall, a place that had stood the test of time, finances and artist interest. There I was introduced to a live Van Morrison on his "It's too late to stop now" tour with the Caledonia Soul Orchestra (which of us who saw that tour didn't fall instantly for Terry Adams on Cello). But, in retrospect, the most profound encounter was almost by accident ... One Friday night in 1973 Neil Young came to Colston Hall shortly after his friend guitarist Danny Whiten and Roadie and friend Bruce Berry had both passed away from drug overdoses. Subsequently his music had become even more introspective and soul searching which led to his album 'Tonight's the night', recorded the same year but not released until 1975. As such the concert was not what most wanted to hear (including me), essentially nothing from the Buffalo Springfield years or his 'Everybody knows this is nowhere/Harvest/After the Goldrush' solo efforts. Instead he sang only his latest material and was dismissive of audience calls for more familiar material. But, amazingly, all was not lost ... That night at Colston Hall the opening band was a mostly unknown, four man American country rock band (who knew what 'country rock' was in 1973) by the name of "The Eagles": it consisted of Don Henley, Glen Frey, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner. Enormous success was still several years in the future but after their 45 minute set I was completely sold, and went out the very next day, a Saturday, and found their two existing albums 'The Eagles' and 'Desperado' in the down town record store ... I like to think I was ahead of the game, a fan before the real success, but at the end of the day it really doesn't matter, The Eagles became the ultimate Seventies and Eighties Band. Glen Frey, one of the two 'always' Eagles passed away today, let him forever take it easy, let him always be standing on the corner in Winslow Arizona, for me he will always be such a fine sight to see ...