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In all the Eagles' albums that followed, they identified closely with the earth, the graphic imagery of Southern California, and especially of the desert.

"I'm from the East, from Detroit," says Glenn Frey in his drawl. "I saw copies of Surfer Magazine, I got the Beach Boys' albums, I took acid and listened to the first Buffalo Springfield record and got chillbumps and had to lay on the floor and stuff . . . I got into that whole California Consciousness."

Don Henley was born and raised in Linden, Texas, a town of some two thousand folks, similar to that depicted in "The Last Picture Show." "All you can do in a place like that is dream," he says. "There wasn't anything to do but sit and watch the sun sink in the west. I used to watch it and say 'Boy . . . the sun's going down in California—some day I'm going to go there!' Henley's band, a dixieland jazz outfit called Felicity, chugged around Texas for seven years before moving out to California.

Randy Meisner's family lived in Nebraska and it was there he first joined a group. The Dynamics, in 1962, at the age of fifteen. He stayed with them for awhile, but realizing it was a bit of a blind alley, moved to Colorado and joined The Poor. "We went to Los Angeles with the intention of becoming a super original folk rock group, but the only recordings we did (with the Buffalo Springfield managers, Greene and Stone) came to nothing. I think maybe we tried too hard to be original."

Randy went on to join Poco, but left after the first album, joining Rick Nelson's band after an eight-month return to Nebraska. Later, during a break in one of the tours, John Boylan, who produced both Rick Nelson and Linda Ronstadt, got Randy to fill in on one of Linda's gigs in San Francisco, which her regular bass player couldn't make. "So, I did that for a couple of nights," he says, "and that's where Glenn and I met and discovered we got on pretty well playing together."

Bernie Leadon grew up in San Diego where he became involved in bluegrass music when he was very young. After a spell in Florida, he returned to L.A. in sixty-seven, when he played with Hearts and Flowers and then Dillard and Clark. Bernie also played with Linda Ronstadt's Corvettes before joining the Flying Burrito Brothers in sixty-nine. He played on two albums, toured constantly, and stayed until July seventy-one.

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