The Eagles Rock St. Louis for the Last Time

Prior to the Eagles’ appearance at the Enterprise Center on Tuesday evening, which is anticipated to be their farewell show in St. Louis, the band, known for their ongoing tour titled “The Long Goodbye,” released a statement urging the crowd to be seated, refrain from recording videos, and abstain from texting or using flash photography.

In fact, such a quiet common courtesy—so rare at most concerts—was probably appreciated by the fans, who were largely of the band members’ generation about to take in a concert that willingly trades showmanship and flashy effects for pristine harmonies and memorable hit songs.

According to Don Henley, the group’s drummer, guitarist, and vocalist, prior to the concert, they intended to make “a vacation from all the madness that’s going on in the world.” He then added with an explanation, “No fireworks, no inflatables, no confetti cannons, no butt-wagging choreography. Just a bunch of guys with guitars.

He wasn’t exaggerating. The front of Eagles could amass to five guitarists—Henley, Joe Walsh, Vince Gill, and Deacon Frey (whom they brought in after his famous father, Glenn, passed away in 2016), along with Steuart Smith, their longtime wingman.

“We have reached the legal limit for how many guitars you can have onstage,” Henley quipped.

All six of those musicians sang, with goosebump-raising harmonies that were long a trademark of the Eagles. They opened with the a cappella opening number, “Seven Bridges Road,” and continued through a string of early ’70s hits: “Take It Easy,” “One of These Nights,” “Witchy Woman,” “Peaceful Easy Feeling,” and “Tequila Sunrise.

It’s country star Vince Gill again proving why he’s the perfect fill-in for the band after Frey’s passing (that’s also when Frey’s son, Deacon, signed on). He said Gill had the vocal range to nail the late Randy Meisner’s part in “Take It to the Limit,” which brought the house down repeatedly.

The role of Gill within the band grew immensely. He managed to get in a few fine lead guitar licks amongst Walsh and Smith, who, aside from his regular bass duties, was singing lead on “New Kid in Town” and “Tequila Sunrise,” both with assurance that matched the rest of the group.

Deacon Frey, who had left the band and was returning for this tour, sings some of the songs most associated with his dad, like “Take It Easy,” “Peaceful Easy Feeling,” and “Already Gone.

Of course, Henley—still the leader, if such a term has any meaning at this point—and the only original Eagle left, was oddly not much of a presence for most of the show. Still in possession of his stunning falsetto range, he rendered “One of These Nights” and “Witchy Woman,” but he wasn’t taking his second solo until “Boys of Summer” much later, after he’d sung his solo hit “dedicated to our dear friend Jimmy Buffett” and “Life in the Fast Lane” to close out the set. For an encore, he takes to the band’s signature hit, “Hotel California,” and an especially poignant take on “Desperado.

But it was Walsh, with his insouciance and crazy facial expressions that are the hallmark of anyone known for being the life of the party, who, as always, would goose the proceedings with tunes from “In the City” and such solo hits as “Life’s Been Good,” “Rocky Mountain Way,” and the James Gang’s “Funk #49.

The literal parade of guitar techs handing out fresh instruments between each song was more than justified—it could be said they had played their guitars so well.

If this was, in fact, the last St. Louis hurrah for the Eagles — well, you never know. The tour extends to next year at least; it was a memorable one and offered plenty of entertainment, as promised, sans special effects. Which was probably a good thing, considering the high bar that Steely Dan set for both musicianship and material by the opening act. The only original member, Donald Fagen, who is now hospitalized in need of partial treatment, seemed in good voice and pretty good spirits.

A nine-piece band, including three backup singers, was led by bearded, close-cropped-headed Mr. Becker—dressed entirely in black and shades—as they brought a sort of jazzy cool to a breezy history of hits such as “Hey Nineteen,” “Aja,” “My Old School,” and “Reeling in the Years.

Eagles setlist:

“Seven Bridges Road”

“Take It Easy”

“One of These Nights”

“New Kid in Town”

“Witchy Woman”

“Take It To the Limit”

“Peaceful Easy Feeling”

“Tequila Sunrise”

“In the City”

“I Can’t Tell You Why”

“Lyin’ Eyes”

“Life’s Been Good”

“Already Gone”

“Boys of Summer”

“Funk #49”

Leave a Reply