The Front Row

The Eagles were the first band to play live at the American Airlines Center

The AAC welcomes back the Eagles

By Chuck Cox

Special Contributor

Dallas loves it some Eagles. After selling out two “History of the Eagles Tour” shows at the American Airlines Center back in October, the hit machine made its way back to the arena it christened in 2001 for yet another concert on Wednesday night.

Once again, the place was packed.

And the band showed why it continues to draw sellout crowds with another amazing concert full of nostalgia. The set list was identical at all three Dallas shows, but I was seeing this tour for the first time. I really enjoyed the way the band tied in its history to the tour, talking about how the Eagles formed and became enormously popular.

The show started with Don Henley and Glenn Frey coming out with acoustic guitars and sitting down near the front of the stage to play “Saturday Night,” a more obscure track from the catalogue. After bringing out original guitarist Bernie Leadon on the second song, “Train Leaves Here This Morning,” the rest of the band members, bassist Timothy B. Schmit and guitarist Joe Walsh, eventually came out to help kick things into full-on hits mode pretty much the rest of the way.

Even though you know how many hits and memorable songs the Eagles have, it’s still amazing to hear them rattle them off, one by one. Before taking a 15-minute intermission, the band had already delivered favorites like “Peaceful Easy Feeling” “Tequila Sunrise,”  “Already Gone,” “The Best of My Love,” “Lyin’ Eyes,” and “Take it to the Limit.”

But the band, which has some of the best harmonies you’ll ever hear live, was far from done. Backed by five more musicians, the Eagles came out and played for nearly two more hours, mixing in a few Walsh solo tunes and a great cover of James Gang’s “Funk #49.” Walsh’s guitar work on “In the City” was absolutely jaw-dropping. And the band still sounds absolutely incredible.

Frey, as usual, had some funny lines in between songs. My favorite was “The Beach Boys were pioneers; the Eagles were settlers.” The band also did a nice job changing up the arrangements on a few songs to give them a fresher vibe.

Of course, native Texan Henley got lots of love from the crowd. And even though I know plenty of people who balk at the Eagles’ high ticket prices, I think they are one of the few bands that are worth paying a little extra to see. When the Eagles are in town, it’s always an event. I’m glad I caught them this time around.

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