Thursday, May 2, 2013

Glenn Frey--The Heat Is On (1984)

     Glenn Frey was having a solid career as a solo artist by 1984. Perhaps not to the level of The Eagles, his previous group, but three top 40 hits gave promise to a brighter future. From his late teens, the Detroit native had been at first been in a succession of local groups,  even singing backing vocals on the Bob Seger System's, "Ramblin' Gamblin' Man" in 1968. Thinking that his future was not going to be in his hometown, he went to California and shortly teamed up with J.D. Souther, a fellow Detroit native and soon formed the group, "Longbranch Pennywhistle". Looking back now, the group looked like a potential who's who of great musicians. Doug Kershaw Ry Cooder, James Burton, Larry Knechtel, and Joe Osbourn.
     The group had no promotion at all, but the connections within the band and in their gigging throughout California would serve Frey well, as he would come into contact with Jackson Browne and Linda Ronstadt. When the band finally folded, Ronstadt contacted him about playing in her backup band to support her nationwide tour in 1971. The band also consisted of Don Henley, Randy Mesiner, and Bernie Leadon. It wasn't long before the four chose to go on their own. It was thought in the music community that Leadon and Mesiner would be the leaders of this group since both had experience with name musicians, however it didn't take long for Henley and Frey to share songwriting duties and take leadership of the band called the Eagles.
     The Eagles is arguably the most popular American band in the 70's. (Fleetwood Mac was 2/5ths American), but as time went on the friction between the members, especially the principal songwriters became too much and they went their separate ways in 1982. Frey's first solo album, "No Fun Allowed" produced two top 40 this, and "The Allnighter" continued the momentum it a song from the movie, "Beverly Hills Cop" to send him into the top 10.
     The song written by Harold Faltermeyer and Keith Forsey, the song was one of five singles off of the soundtrack and contributed to the 80's being considered THE decade for pop hits.



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