Best of My Love (Eagles song)

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"Best of My Love"
Single by Eagles
from the album On the Border
B-side"Ol' '55"
ReleasedNovember 5, 1974
StudioOlympic, London, UK
  • 3:25 (single edit)
  • 4:34 (album version)
Songwriter(s)Don Henley, Glenn Frey, J. D. Souther
Producer(s)Glyn Johns
Eagles singles chronology
"James Dean"
"Best of My Love"
"One of These Nights"

"Best of My Love" is a song written by Don Henley, Glenn Frey, and J. D. Souther. It was originally recorded by the Eagles (with Henley singing lead vocals), and included on their 1974 album On the Border. The song was released as the third single from the album, and it became the band's first Billboard Hot 100 number 1 single in March 1975. The song also topped the easy listening (adult contemporary) chart for one week a month earlier.[3] Billboard ranked it as the number 12 song for 1975.[4]



In 2009, J.D. Souther said of the writing of "Best of My Love": "Glenn found the tune; the tune I think came from a Fred Neil record... We were working on that album (On the Border) and came to London. The three of us were writing it and were on deadline to get it finished. I don't know where we got the inspiration."[5] Glenn Frey recalled: "I was playing acoustic guitar one afternoon in Laurel Canyon, and I was trying to figure out a tuning that Joni Mitchell had shown me a couple of days earlier. I got lost and ended up with the guitar tuning for what would later turn out to be 'The Best of My Love.'"[6] According to Henley, most of the lyrics were written while in a booth in Dan Tana's Restaurant close to the Troubadour.[7] The maître d' of Dan Tana, Guido, was thanked in the liner notes of the album.[8] The lyrics were inspired in part by Henley's break up with his then girlfriend Suzannah Martin.[9]


"Best of My Love" was recorded at Olympic Studios in London. The Eagles had begun working on On the Border with producer Glyn Johns who had helmed their Eagles debut album and the follow-up Desperado album. Despite the success of their debut album the Eagles (Frey specifically) were unhappy over Johns' preference for country rock and toning down their own rock aspirations, and their dissatisfaction with Johns was reinforced by the similarly honed Desperado album which was a comparative failure and Johns' no-drug policy during the recording.[10] After six weeks in London—which yielded "Best of My Love" and one other usable track, "You Never Cry Like a Lover"—the Eagles discontinued working with Johns, then spending eight weeks touring in Europe and the US and completing the recording of On the Border at the Record Plant in their hometown of Los Angeles with Bill Szymczyk producing.[11] "Best of My Love" was remixed by Szymczyk.

Single release

Frey was reluctant to release "Best of My Love" as a single and held off its release for some time.[12] The release of the Eagles' "Best of My Love" as a single has been attributed to the track's airplay at WKMI-AM in Kalamazoo MI, where radio dj Jim Higgs - also station music & program director - began playing the track off its parent album On the Border soon after that album's release in the spring of 1974, favoring "Best of My Love" over the official single releases "Already Gone" and "James Dean". Advised by Higgs of the strong positive response of WKMI's listeners to "Best of My Love", Asylum Records gave the track a limited single release of 1000 copies available only in the Kalamazoo area, with reaction to this test-release securing the full release of "Best of My Love" as a single on November 5, 1974.[13]

However, when the single was finally released, Asylum Records had truncated the song so that it would be more radio-friendly, but had done so without the band's knowledge or approval. It caused considerable anger in the band, and Henley demanded that the single be pulled from stores. The song however would become the most successful of their singles released so far, giving the band their first number 1 single. When the song was judged to have sold a million copies, the Eagles' manager, Irving Azoff, sent to Asylum Records a gold record with a piece cut out, mounted on a plaque with a caption that said "The Golden Hacksaw Award".[12]

Cash Box called it "a very pretty country flavored ballad" and said "the harmonies are of the usual Eagle excellence and the instrumentation is mild and acoustic."[14] Record World called it a "folksy ballad" which "has the easy-goin' beauty to be one of [the Eagles] biggest and best" and said that "soaring production takes their harmonies sky high."[15]


Chart history

Cover versions

Prior to the release of the Eagles version as a single, John Lees released his version of "Best of My Love" as a single in 1974.[24] The 5th Dimension sang a cover on their 1974 Soul and Inspiration album.[25] The song was also covered by Yvonne Elliman on her 1975 album, Rising Sun.[26] South African trumpeter Hugh Masekela covered the song in his 1976 album Melody Maker.[27][28] In 1993, country duo Brooks & Dunn recorded their version for the Eagles tribute album Common Thread: The Songs of the Eagles. Rod Stewart included the song on his 2006 covers album Still the Same... Great Rock Classics of Our Time.

See also


  1. ^ Jasen, David A. (2002). A Century of American Popular Music: 2000 Best-Loved and Remembered Songs (1899-1999). Routledge. p. 20. ISBN 0-415-93700-0. The Eagles had a number 1 hit with this soft—rock ballad in 1975, which charted for fourteen weeks
  2. ^ Smith, Troy L. (14 December 2021). "Every No. 1 song of the 1970s ranked from worst to best". Retrieved 30 January 2023.
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-2001. Record Research. p. 84.
  4. ^ "Top 100 Songs of 1975 - Billboard Year End Charts". Archived from the original on 2019-01-28. Retrieved 2016-02-28.
  5. ^ "Acoustic Storm Interviews - J.D. Souther". Retrieved November 22, 2014.
  6. ^ "Liner Notes". Glenn Frey Online.
  7. ^ Cameron Crowe (August 2003). "Conversations With Don Henley and Glenn Frey". The Uncool.
  8. ^ Browne, David (June 10, 2016). "Eagles' Complete Discography: Don Henley Looks Back". Rolling Stone.
  9. ^ Eliot, Marc (2004). To The Limit: The Untold Story Of The Eagles. Da Capo Press. p. 123. ISBN 9780306813986. Retrieved January 21, 2016.
  10. ^ History of the Eagles. 2013. Event occurs at 38:00–39:20.
  11. ^ Felder, Don (2008). Heaven and Hell: My Life in the Eagles (1974–2001). Hoboken NJ: John Wiley & Sons. p. 106. ISBN 978-0470450420.
  12. ^ a b Eliot, Marc (2004). To The Limit: The Untold Story of the Eagles. Da Capo Press. p. 112. ISBN 9780306813986.[permanent dead link]
  13. ^ "Kalamazoo DJ to meet the Eagles almost 4 decades after helping band get #1 hit". 7 September 2014. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  14. ^ "CashBox Record Reviews" (PDF). Cash Box. November 16, 1974. p. 20. Retrieved 2021-12-11.
  15. ^ "Single Picks" (PDF). Record World. November 16, 1974. p. 28. Retrieved 2023-03-14.
  16. ^ a b "National Top 100 Singles for 1975". Kent Music Report. December 29, 1975. Retrieved January 15, 2022 – via Imgur.
  17. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 3944a." RPM. Library and Archives Canada.
  18. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 6139." RPM. Library and Archives Canada.
  19. ^ "Eagles Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  20. ^ "Eagles Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  21. ^ "Cashbox Top 100: February 16, 1975". Retrieved 2021-01-24.
  22. ^ "Top 200 Singles of 1975". RPM magazine.
  23. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1975/Top 100 Songs of 1975".
  24. ^ "John Lees – Best Of My Love / You Can't Get It". Discogs. 1974.
  25. ^ "The 5th Dimension* - Soul & Inspiration". Discogs. 1974.
  26. ^ "Yvonne Elliman - Rising Sun". Discogs. 1975.
  27. ^ "Hugh Masekela: Melody Maker". Discogs. 1976. Retrieved 18 May 2016.
  28. ^ "DISCOGRAPHY: 1970-1979". Retrieved 18 May 2016.