Don Henley: Glenn Frey’s Son Joining Eagles

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Don Henley (via his Facebook page)

One of the unanswered questions regarding this summer’s upcoming Classic West and Classic East festivals has now been answered: Deacon Frey, the son of the late Eagles co-founder Glenn Frey, will be playing with the reunited band.

A rumor had been floated since the announcement of the festival that the younger Frey, who has performed Eagles music in the past, might be joining the band for these events, although no formal confirmation had been made until now. Eagles co-founder Don Henley revealed Deacon Frey’s involvement during an interview on Monday (May 15) with host Mike Rhyner on “The Hardline,” on The Ticket (Dallas sports radio station KTCK).

“I’m not supposed to say that,” Henley replied when asked directly whether Frey would be involved in the shows. He then let the cat out of the bag: “Yeah, he is,” Henley said. “There’s going to be an official announcement in a few days but let’s just do it here. Glenn’s son Deacon is a very talented young man, and he seems to be up for the task. He’s enthusiastic about it and he’s been working real hard on it, and he’s gonna do it with us. I think that’s appropriate.”

Related: A record label exec looks back at a meeting with Glenn Frey

Initially, many fans were were surprised to learn that the Eagles were booked to perform, as Henley had said following Glenn Frey’s death that the band would pack it in permanently.

“I never planned on it coming out this way but it’s my responsibility to carry on this legacy and to keep these songs alive,” he said. “Apparently people still want to hear them. I thought we were done when Glenn passed away and I said as much, but I was in a state of shock at the time. But we have gotten a lot of messages from people all over the world from people who would like to see things continue.”

Deacon Frey performing in 2009

Henley explained further: “There’s an old system both in Eastern and Western culture called the guild system where the father is the master and the son is the apprentice. The trade, the craft, the business is handed down from father to son. I think it’s the only appropriate way to carry on. I don’t think I’d do it otherwise. Since it’s Glenn’s blood, it’s his son, I think that’s appropriate. There’ll be one more musician along for the ride too, but I’m not gonna say who that is.”

The festival takes place at Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium July 15, with the Eagles, Steely Dan and the Doobie Brothers, and July 16, with Fleetwood Mac, Journey and Earth, Wind & Fire. The same bill comes to New York’s Citi Field on July 29-30.

Related: See what other classic rock acts are on tour this summer via our Tour Listings

During the two-part interview, which can be heard in a podcast here, a relaxed-sounding Henley also spoke about his own star-studded birthday concert, set for July 22 in Dallas (the weekend between the two festival dates). Guest artists committed to the show include Patty Smyth, Stevie Nicks, Joe Walsh and Timothy B. Schmit, Henley announced, adding that other stars “might show up but they’re not being announced.”

Related: Classic East and Classic West festival set for July

The Eagles in the ’70s

Additionally, Henley talks about his initial meeting with Glenn Frey and the formation of the Eagles (first as Linda Ronstadt’s backing band), his abstention from alcohol while on the road (“Alcohol does something to my vocal cords. I like red wine; I collect it. But if I drink one sip I’m screwed for a month), and the state of music today.

“I wonder what’s going to be around 30, 40 years from now of what we’ve got today,” Henley says in the interview. “Frankly, I don’t see it…Everything now seems to be pretty short-lived and pretty fluffy.” The Eagles, he said, came along during “the golden age of the music business. We made records at a time when people were still willing to pay for music…We built something.”

Watch Glenn and Deacon Frey, along with Don Was and his son Henry, performing in 2010

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Eagles’ Hotel California 2021 Tour (Tickets are available at Ticketmaster and StubHub.)

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6 Comments so far

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  1. Catfish
    #1 Catfish 16 May, 2017, 11:49

    Good to see Glenn’s son involved, because it’s not the Eagles without Some kind of Freys involved.

    Reply this comment
    • PallieWallie
      PallieWallie 16 May, 2017, 18:50

      This is great news as it was Glenn’s legacy to keep The Eagles going for the fans. And his son Deacon will be able to fill the void that Glenn’s passing left. He’s quite capable to step in and take over for his dad. I’m thrilled to hear the news. Kudos to Deacon.

      Reply this comment
  2. Becky
    #2 Becky 16 May, 2017, 21:04

    It’s wonderful to hear Deacon will be following in his father’s footsteps!! Obviously, we would’ve loved to have seen them perform together, but perhaps Deacon will help keep The Eagles’ spirit alive and his father’s memory alive as well…

    Reply this comment
  3. Joe
    #3 Joe 17 May, 2017, 00:19

    It looks as-if I’m gonna be the lone dissenter here. Bad idea. Will the band replace each member eventually? They should leave the band as-is… without any subs.

    Reply this comment
  4. J.J. What
    #4 J.J. What 17 May, 2017, 17:00

    I like the idea! The kid seems to know what he’s doing and that’s fine by me. Essentially it’s up to the rest of the band members. We’re just fans and I love the Eagles no matter what.

    Reply this comment

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