‘Fans speak with their wallets’: Glenn Frey on why the Eagles stick with the old songs

As Glenn Frey makes another run of History of the Eagles shows, more than six years after the group’s most recent album of original songs, the question of boredom begins to creep in. Not for Frey.

He acknowledges that the Eagles’ fans are most interested in music from their initial run of 1970s-era albums, and their concerts — indeed, their entire post-reunion career — remain focused on that period. Long Road out of Eden, the Eagles’ 2007 double album, and a trio of new songs on 1994’s Hell Freezes Over remain the only original material to have arrive since 1979’s The Long Run.

“You try to work the new stuff in,” Frey tells CBS, “while keeping people entertained with the stuff they came to hear. Fans speak with their wallets. If you want to put people in the audience, you better be playing some of the songs they like.”

More recent setlists will include “Love Will Keep Us Live,” the Timothy B. Schmit-sung ballad from Hell Freezes Over, but otherwise stick to the tried-and-true classic hits. Frey says, despite their vintage, that he never tires of them — and fans don’t either.

“Now, I admire the artists that go the other way,” Frey adds. “I remember Neil Young did a show, and all he played was Tonight’s the Night — his whole new album, and nobody had ever heard a single song. Things get a little restless out there in the audience, you know? So, those songs are the reason we are where we are today. We don’t have any problem doing them. And, you know what? It’s a lot of fun singing with those guys.”

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