Friday BBQ Spotify 11/22/13
Joseph Fidler Walsh has been a member of three commercially successful bands: the James Gang, Barnstorm, and the Eagles. He has also experienced success both as a solo artist and prolific session musician. He holds the number 54 spot in Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.” So many great songs: Rocky Mountain Way. Life’s Been Good. Turn to Stone. All that terrific music with The Eagles. I couldn’t believe how good Midnight Man sounded when I just fired it up on Spotify. I’m just trying to imagine the time in the near future when Rocky Mountain Way starts getting piped in to assisted living facilities so seniors will be able to remember the days of one of the classic guitar riffers of all time.
Most fans of Joe’s music don’t know that besides his collaboration with The Eagles, he had quite an impact on other significant music artists of the 1970′s. He was living in my old stomping grounds of Boulder, Colorado when he was a critical part of kickstarting James Guercio’s Caribou Ranch recording studio in nearby mountain-town Nederland, eventually producing Dan Fogelberg’s seminal album Souvenirs. Besides being the inspiration and recording location of Joe’s Rocky Mountain Way, the Caribou Ranch was a major recording studio for artists from Elton John to Chicago, until being destroyed by a fire in 1985. I never realized that Song for Emma was written about Joe’s daughter, who was killed in a car accident in Boulder when she was only three years old. Joe had a memorial water fountain and plaque constructed in her memory at her favorite North Boulder Park playground in 1976. Joe’s popularity faded until The Eagles embarked on the Hell Freezes Over Tour in 1994, which spawned the uber-successful concert DVD and introduced Joe’s music to a whole new generation of listeners. I’ve compiled a long list – Joe’s created some great music. And I added a couple of extras at the end from his collaborations with country artists Kix Brooks and Kenny Chesney. Along with the full playlist of his latest collection, Analog Man.
I oftentimes think about driving my old VW bug around in the 1970′s listening to all of Joe’s early music with my friends, some of whom are no longer around to share it today. It’s amazing how the music we listen to frames our history. I can still remember the day my friend Drew Lazarine plugged in the James Gang tape in his old Chevy pickup in Houston and turned it up with that big smile on his face. “Hey brother, have you heard anything like this before?!” I wish he was still with me here today in Northern California to listen to it again. I think I’ll have to drive around today and remember that time. While I crank up Joe as loud as I can. Have a wonderful mid-November weekend everyone. And be a little disruptive. It’s good for you. And ultimately, it’ll be good for all of us too.
And here’s the complete playlist of Joe’s latest album Analog Man: