As the founding member, drummer, vocalist and songwriter for The Eagles, Don Henley has provide no shortage of hits throughout his tenure in the beloved SoCal group and beyond.
From his many hits with the band – “Witchy Woman,” “Desperado,” “Best of My Love” and “Hotel California” just to name a few – Henley has continued his success with an illustrious solo career long after The Eagles disbanded in 1980. Since its reforming in 1994, Henley now splits his time between performing his solo material and touring with The Eagles, who are currently on the road.
All in all, there’s no one quite as masterful of a musician or prolific as a songwriter as Henley, so in celebration of his 67th birthday today (July 22nd), let’s take a look back on Don Henley’s amazing solo hits!
1. “Dirty Laundry” (1982)
From his debut solo album I Can’t Stand Still, Henley aired out all the “Dirty Laundry” about the sensationalism of news in the media to grab his first #1 solo hit on the rock charts.
2. “The Boys Of Summer” (1984)
Filled with themes of growing up and summer love, Henley captures the feeling of long-lost love perfectly in his timeless summer ballad. Henley went on to win the GRAMMY award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance in 1986.
3. “All She Wants To Do Is Dance” (1984)
Written by Danny Kortchmar, Henley’s “All She Wants To Do Is Dance” was a serious song set to a catchy tune about the state of American youth who seemed more concerned about partying than with what’s happening in the world around them. However, the message may have been lost due to the song’s upbeat melody and went on to become a big dance hit on the Billboard charts.
4. “The End Of The Innocence” (1989)
Bruce Hornsby wrote the lyrics and played piano on this ballad that earned Henley his fourth #1 mainstream rock hit. The song touches on the running theme in many of Henley’s solo hits about the nostalgia of an earlier time, reflections on the loss of childhood innocence over generations, and included many political overtones. The music video, directed by David Fincher, went on to win the MTV Video Music Award for Best Male Video in 1990.
5. “The Heart Of The Matter” (1990)
Henley collaborated with longtime songwriting partner J.D. Souther on this emotional ballad about a man finding out his love has found someone else and finding the strength to forgive after having his heart broken. The lyrics come from personal experience as both Henley and Souther had broken up with their fiancees in that same year.
Do you have another favorite Henley hit you think should be included on the list? Share your pick in the comments below!