Formed in Los Angeles in 1971, this highly successful band was made up of musicians drawn from singer Linda Ronstadt's backup group. The original four members of the Eagles were Bernie Leadon (guitar, vocals), Randy Meisner (bass, vocals), Glenn Frey (guitar, vocals), and Don Henley (drums, vocals).
Due to the fact that all 4 were experienced in the music industry, they were immediately signed to David Geffen's Asylum Records and flew to England with their producer, Glyn Johns, to produce their first album, The Eagles, which was released in June of 1972 and in went gold around a year and a half later following the release of two Top Ten hits, "Take It Easy" and "Witchy Woman," and one Top 20 hit, "Peaceful Easy Feeling."
The Eagles toured as an opening act throughout 1972 and into early 1973, when they returned to England and Glyn Johns to record their second album, Desperado, a concept album about outlaws. It included the Top 40 single, "Tequila Sunrise."
After touring to support Desperado, the Eagles again convened a recording session with Glyn Johns for their third album. But their desire to make harder rock music clashed with Johns' sense of them as a country-rock band, and as a result, they split from the producer after recording two tracks, "You Never Cry Like a Lover" and "The Best of My Love."
During a 1974 tour opened by singer/guitarist Joe Walsh, they hired Walsh's producer, Bill Szymczyk, who handled the rest of the album, On the Border. Szymczyk brought in a session guitarist, Don Felder, an old friend of Bernie Leadon. He impressed the rest of the band that he was recruited to join the group. In March of that year "On the Border" was released in and went gold and reached the Top Ten in June the same month as their first single, "Already Gone" hit the top 20.
In June of the following year the band released the smash hit, "One of These Nights." It went gold the same month and Number One the following. It containted "Lyin' Eyes," which won the year's Grammy for best pop vocal preformance. a world tour went underway, but they shortly stalled when on December 20, 1975, it was announced that Bernie Leadon had quit the band. Joe Walsh was brought in as his replacement and the band continued to the Far East in early 1976.
While on the world tour, they agreed to a "Greatest Hits" release since they had no plans to release a new album soon. The album, Eagles: Their Greatest Hits 1971-1976 became the first album certified platinum for sales of one million copies.
In December of 1976, the Eagles released "Hotel California," their first album in more than a year. It hit number one the next month. The title song, with its notorious guitar solo, won Grammy for Record of the Year.
In March 1977 the Eagles then embarked on a world tour that began with a month in the U.S., followed by a month in Europe and the Far East, then returned to the U.S. in May for stadium dates. At the end of the tour in September, Randy Meisner left the band. He was replaced by Timothy B. Schmit who replaced him in his former band interestingly enough.
A year after beginning the tour, the Eagles began working on their 6th album The Long Run, it was released in September of the following year. It hit number one and was certified platinum after four months, eventually earning multi-platinum certifications.
The Eagles toured the U.S. in 1980, and during a week-long series of shows at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, they recorded Eagles Live. After the tour the band was defunct, but it wasn't announced till May of 1982 each embarking on their own solo career. But in 1994 they reunited when they taped an MTV concert, toured, and eventually released the multi-million seller album, Hell Freezes Over.
The Eagles next notable appearance was in January 1998 for their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, when the five present members performed alongside past members Leadon and Meisner. The following year, their Greatest Hits album had gone platinum 27 times.
Today they rank as the 3rd bestselling band. Right after The Beatles and Led Zeppelin.