Hotel California


the beverly hills building
Photo by Erica Zhao on

My sister Liz loves “Hotel California” and the Eagles, and my bro-in-law loves her. So much that he flew her to the Big Apple last Valentine’s Day to see the Eagles at Madison Square Garden. How romantic is that?

A collaboration of all five Eagles of that era: Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Joe Walsh, Don Felder, and Randy Meisner, The Hotel California album was released on Christmas day in 1976 and became one of the biggest selling of all time. Texas vocalist Don Henley said of the song writing process, “We were getting an extensive education, in life, in love, in business. Beverly Hills was still a mythical place to us. In that sense it became something of a symbol, and the ‘Hotel’ the locus of all that LA had come to mean for us. In a sentence, I’d sum it up as the end of innocence, round one.”

Liz, if you’re reading, I dedicate this iconic classic to you.

Although the Gipsy Kings released their Spanish flamenco version back in 1990, I probably heard theirs for the first time in The Big Lebowski Jesus scene, sometime after 1998 (click the link for purple polyester poetry in motion). When not touring, The Gipsy Kings founding members, Nicolas Reyes and Tonino Baliardo, live with their families in the south of France.

Today will be fabulous.

45 thoughts on “Hotel California

  1. Love what this means to you, your sister, and family, especially since I am a long time res of La La Land. However, you would get a kick from checking out the place this song actually is probably about (one should always be careful with being sure about imagery in songs or poetry but…) and what “Hotel California” probably actually refers to in this song. I didn’t learn of this til just a few years ago. Let me know if you can’t find it. 🙂 “It’s a lovely place”…. Jane

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jane! Thanks for the visit. I know there’s much speculation on the meaning of the lyrics–a definite, seductive undertone. I had never heard the mental hospital theory.


    1. Cool! Thanks for visiting, David. In 1976, I was six. At the time, I was listening to a 45 of “A Very Merry Unbirthday” from Disney’s Alice in Wonderland soundtrack. I can’t say I was listening to the Eagles, but I’ve developed an appreciation.


  2. We were really lucky to get in and out of NYC for that trip in February. Definitely a good time with thousands of others who knew all the words to every song on the album. I really enjoyed being reminded of it today. 😘


      1. But yes, their family is very well known here, they are real gypsies crazy about guitars! And Arles is a very, very pretty town – we’ll have lots of things to do when you come. Just next door is Avignon, the city of the Popes. 🙂


  3. I am a huge fan of the Eagles. And I am jealous of your sister, because she must have seen their “Hotel California” live tour which I was so hoping to see but couldn’t due to stupid Covid-19. I did see them several years ago for the “Hell Freezes Over Tour” with my husband and our best friends though and it was phenomenal! Hadn’t heard this other version of the song though so will be checking it out.


  4. Both bands are amazing and I love the song Hotel California. Glen Frey went to Dondero High School in Royal Oak, MI. He was in a local band called “The Mushrooms.” Some of us still remember thinking he was crazy when he left for California to “make it.” Big smile for you.


  5. Oh no, you’re dragging me back to highschool, proms, and the delightful drama of that particular era. I have always been an Eagles fan. I think I’ll pull up some of those all songs and let the memories have their way with me. C


  6. Outstanding, Crystal! All your Monday remakes have been good, but this one is…beyond that.

    I love the original version and pull it from my collection at least weekly, but the Gipsy Kings take? Just wow! You sparked a glorious obsession – I must have this song. Hope you’re proud of yourself. I know I would be.

    Thanks too for mentioning Lebowski as starting all of this for you. Me too, actually! Naturally, as soon as I spied the topic, I was hoping for a Lebowski reference. In fact, I played the clip before I even started reading the article. How’s that for opening with dessert when a sumptuous feast unfolds before you?

    Ruin my appetite? Nope. Whet it, more like.


    1. Keith, I’m so proud. I almost posted the Lebowski clip. I try to avoid the F-Bombs. They slip here and there. If you go on a Gipsy Kings kick and care to conjure your inner Crystal, one of my favorites is “Bamboléo.”

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you for sharing!.. liked the music ….though in my day the California music were the Beach Boys… “Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” (Plato).. 🙂

    Hope all is well in your world and life is all that you wish for it to be… 🙂


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