Young Street Performers Sing “Hotel California”- People Gather Around
Image Credit: Youtube channel "Fabio Rodrigues"
“Hotel California” is the title track of the eponymous Eagles album released in 1977. The song was written by Don Henley, Don Felder, and Glenn Frey, and is known for having one of the most memorable solos in rock history.
While the song has found interpretation in many of their listener’s imaginations, Henley revealed to the London Daily Mail in 2007 its real meaning. “Some of the wilder interpretations of that song have been amazing. It was really about the excesses of American culture and certain girls we knew. But it was also about the uneasy balance between art and commerce,”
said the Eagles co-founder, although he made another variety of the interpretation in 2013’s History of the Eagles documentary film, saying: “It’s a song about a journey from innocence to experience.”
Felder said he came up with the song’s music while playing guitar on the beach, laying down the chord progressions, and later presented it to Henley and Frey who completed the song with lyrics. He said the band was aiming to give the listener a full sensory experience with the song: “When we try to write lyrics, we try to write lyrics that touch multiple senses, things you can see, smell, taste, hear. ‘I heard the mission bell,’ you know, or ‘the warm smell of colitas,’ talking about being able to relate something through your sense of smell. Just those sort of things. So that’s kind of where ‘colitas’ came from.”
“Hotel California” was recorded in three different sessions before the band found the version that they liked the most, as it was a challenge to find the right key for Henley to sing in. The Eagles eventually won the 1977 Grammy for Record of the Year, but the band didn’t show up to accept the award as Henley wasn’t a believer in competition. Instead, the band stayed to rehearse and watched the ceremony on TV.
Watch as two young buskers, Allie Sherlock and Fabio Rodrigues, nail the Eagles’ landmark hit during a recorded street performance.