Exactly 50 years ago from today, the Eagles changed country-rock forever. It was June 1st, 1972 when the band released their self-titled debut album and made themselves known to the world.
During the first album’s recording, the Eagles consisted of vocalist/guitarist Glenn Frey, vocalist/drummer Don Henley, vocalist/guitarist Bernie Leadon, and vocalist/bassist Randy Meisner. The band would go through many lineup changes throughout their career, but this original lineup put the band on the map.
Eagles was a massive hit with beloved singles such as Take It Easy, Peaceful Easy Feeling, and Witchy Woman. Photographer Henry Diltz photographed the band and the album’s cover in the Joshua Tree desert of California. Frey later admitted that the entire band was on peyote during the photoshoot.
Prior to the album’s recording, the band was confused on which direction to take their sound. Frey wanted to peruse rock ‘n’ roll, while Leadon wanted more of a country twang. That’s when famous producer Glyn Johns (who also worked with The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and The Who among many others) stepped in to save the day. With the help of Johns, the Eagles established their country-infused rock ‘n’ roll sound that would set the tone of their entire discography. The record would go on to inspire future generations of country rock and folk rock bands.
Watch The Eagles perform Take It Easy from their debut album live here: