Glenn Frey, one of the founding members of the legendary rock band the Eagles, died Monday at the age of 67 in New York City, his publicist announced.
“Words can neither describe our sorrow, nor our love and respect for all that he has given to us, his family, the music community & millions of fans worldwide,” his publicist said, adding that Frey “fought a courageous battle” against rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis and pneumonia.
Guitarist Frey and drummer Don Henley formed the Eagles in Los Angeles during the early 1970s with guitarist Bernie Leadon and bassist Randy Meisner. An Eagles greatest-hits collection from the mid-1970s and “Hotel California,” which was released in 1976, both have sold more than 20 million copies and are among the best-selling albums of all time. A few of their many hits include “The Best of My Love,” ”Desperado,” ”One of These Nights” and “The Long Run,”
But, in his statement, Henley gave his friend all the credit.
“He was like a brother to me; we were family, and like most families, there was some dysfunction. But, the bond we forged 45 years ago was never broken, even during the 14 years that the Eagles were dissolved,” Henley said in a written statement. “But, Glenn was the one who started it all. He was the spark plug, the man with the plan,” Henley said. “He had an encyclopedic knowledge of popular music and a work ethic that wouldn’t quit. He was funny, bullheaded, mercurial, generous, deeply talented and driven. He loved his wife and kids more than anything.”
Frey and more Henley shared songwriting and singing duties, as did Randy Meisner in one hit, with Frey as the tenor featured in “Heartache Tonight,” ”Already Gone” and the group’s breakthrough hit, “Take it Easy.”
“It will be very strange going forward in a world without him in it,” Henley added. “But, I will be grateful, every day, that he was in my life. Rest in peace, my brother. You did what you set out to do, and then some.”
Frey and Henley became estranged for years, which led to the band remaining apart all throughout the 1980s. Henley vowed the Eagles would reunite only when “hell freezes over,” which became the name of the 1994 smash hit album they and their loyal fans never thought possible.
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