Terminally Pretty

A girl who is drop dead gorgeous is considered to be terminally pretty.  Most humans like to know if they are doing a good job, or not when they are with their partner and as long as nobody ever files an official complaint about their abilities, then they can convince themselves that they are good in bed.  Glenn Frey said that he was riding shotgun in a Corvette with a drug dealer on the way to Vegas to play poker and the next thing he knew, they were doing 90, which made him paranoid, because he had drugs on him.  He said to the driver, “Hey man!”, who grinned and goes, “Life in the fast lane!”  Glen knew, “Now there’s a song title.”  Joe Walsh helped write the song ‘Life in the Fast Lane’ with Don Henley and Glenn Frey for their Hotel California album.  It went to #11 on the charts in 1976.

The Eagles never broke up, they just took a fourteen-year vacation.  Don Henley said that with ‘Life in the Fast Lane’, they were trying to paint a picture that cocaine wasn’t all that great of a drug.  It turns you on, but it also messes you up and makes you paranoid.  This song is a metaphor about being engaged in a lifestyle that is pleasure-driven, which becomes very risky behavior, because this brutally handsome and ruthless dude and his deadly beautiful woman are living on the edge with danger around every corner.  This lifestyle may be alluring to some, but it really needs to come with a warning, as when there are lines on the mirror, this will probably lead to you getting lines on your face, because this drug takes a toll on your body.  The Eagles formed in Los Angeles, a city renown for people getting caught up in a lifestyle of excess.

Joe Walsh said that when he joined the Eagles replacing Bernie Leadon that they were looking for some song writing input from him.  One night Joe was in his dressing room getting ready for a show, and he began playing this one lick that he liked to play over and over as part of warming up, mostly because it’s really a hard lick to play.  Don Henley came in and said, “What the hell is that?”  He went and got Glenn Frey and Joe played it for them.  They asked if that was his and he said, “Yeah.”  They said, “Well, there’s our Joe Walsh Eagles song!”  Don and Glenn, but mostly Don, put the words together, and Glenn kind of arranged it.

Hotel California was the fifth studio album by the Eagles and it featured two number 1 songs, ‘New Kid in Town’ and ‘Hotel California’, which each won Grammy awards.  This album won record of the year and it became the third best-selling U.S. album in history, and it has recently been certified 26-times Platinum by the RIAA.  The best-selling album in US history is also by the Eagles, a compilation being Their Greatest Hits 1971 – 1975, which sold 38 million copies and Michael Jackson comes in second with his Thriller that sold 33 million records.  Drummer Don Henley sang lead vocals on this song.  All five of the Eagles sang on Hotel California and Glenn Frey played guitars and keyboards, Joe Walsh played guitars and keyboards, Don Felder played guitars and Randy Meisner played bass and the guitarrón (a big Mexican guitar).

The Eagles sold more albums than any other band in the history of music while also winning six Grammy Awards and recording five different number one singles.  The Eagles were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.  At the age of 67, founding member Glenn Frey died on January 18, 2016 caused by rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis, pneumonia and quite possibly from living his life too much in the fast lane.

He was a hard-headed man he was brutally handsome
And she was terminally pretty
She held him up and he held her for ransom
In the heart of the cold, cold city
He had a nasty reputation as a cruel dude
They said he was ruthless said he was crude
They had one thing in common: they were good in bed
She’d say, “Faster, faster. The lights are turning red”

Life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind
Life in the fast lane, yeah

Eager for action and hot for the game
The coming attraction, the drop of a name
They knew all the right people
They took all the right pills
They threw outrageous parties
They paid heavenly bills
There were lines on the mirror, lines on her face
She pretended not to notice she was caught up in the race
Out every evenin’ until it was light
He was too tired to make it
She was too tired to fight about it

Life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind
Life in the fast lane
Life in the fast lane
Everything all the time
Life in the fast lane

Blowin’ and burnin’, blinded by thirst
They didn’t see the stop sign
Took a turn for the worst
She said, “Listen, baby
You can hear the engine ring
We’ve been up and down this highway
Haven’t seen a god-damn thing”
He said, “Call the doctor
I think I’m gonna crash”
“The doctor say he’s coming but you gotta pay in cash”
They were rushing down that freeway
Messed around and got lost
They didn’t care, they were just dyin’ to get off

And it was life in the fast lane
Surely make you lose your mind
Life in the fast lane
Life in the fast lane
Everything all the time
Life in the fast lane

Life in the fast lane
Life in the fast lane

Written for Song Lyric Sunday prompt Avenue/Boulevard/Drive/Lane/Road/Street.

21 thoughts on “Terminally Pretty

  1. HC is my favorite song, but I love this one too. All their songs are great. I remember a guy playing Those Shoes back in 1983 in a computer class, which inspired me to run out after school and buy my first Eagles album. That’s when I fell in love with them, on a freezing cold day in Chicago.

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  2. They’ve made a lot of good songs. Joe Walsh has a distinctive sound to his guitar playing. My favorite song of theirs is probably Desperado. When you are that at the top of the charts for so long, I don’t know how you could avoid at least some living in the fast lane!

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    1. True being talented brings you into the limelight and living in LA makes it easy to act in a fashionable way, and also when everyone else is doing it, you don’t notice the harmful effects.

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  3. I never heard of this song before but a wonderful choice, it has a bluesy feel to it. I am a Glenn Frey fan as I like his solo career in the 80s. But the Eagles are legends!

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  4. Good post and history! To be honest, that one is my least favorite song on the album, but like you said, you can’t go wrong with the Eagles. My brother gave me that LP and Rumours on the same birthday, back when I was likely turning 10… I remember that one gift more than any other thing he gave me when I was young!

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    1. Felder thought that Frey and Henley were greedy and he sued them for wrongful termination which caused a lot of legal troubles which were settled out of court, six years after Felder was let go.

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      1. I watched that documentary that they released a little before Frey passed… Not a fun group to be in at times.

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