Rocky Mountain Way (song)
|"Rocky Mountain Way"|
|Song by Joe Walsh from the album The Smoker You Drink, the Player You Get|
|Genre||Rock, blues rock|
"Rocky Mountain Way" is a 1973 song by rock guitarist Joe Walsh and his band Barnstorm, with writing credits given to Walsh, Rocke Grace, Kenny Passarelli, and Joe Vitale. The song was originally released on the album The Smoker You Drink, the Player You Get.
"I'm living in Colorado and I'm mowing the lawn. I look up and there's the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains and there's snow on them in the summer. And it knocked me back because it was just beautiful. And I thought, 'Well I have committed. I'm already in Colorado and it's too late to regret the James Gang. The Rocky Mountain way is better than the way I had, because the music was better.' I got the words. Bam!"
Walsh has varied that story over the years, however, telling the Rocky Mountain News that he wrote the lyrics while up recording the album at Caribou Ranch Recording Studio.
In 1976, Walsh recorded the song on his You Can't Argue with a Sick Mind album.
Walsh played the song frequently while on tour with the Eagles, including the 1977 Hotel California Tour, again in 1979 and later into the first half of 1980's Long Run tour, also being added yet again to the set in the 1994 reunion tour with Eagles.
In 1985, Walsh joined Australian rock band, The Party Boys, and while touring they recorded a live album, You Need Professional Help, which featured an extended guitar duel between Walsh and Kevin Borich on "Rocky Mountain Way".
In 2010, "Rocky Mountain Way" was one of three songs played during the encore each night during the Eagles "Long Road Out of Eden" World Tour. The other two songs performed in the encore were "Desperado" and "Take it Easy".
In 2012, "Rocky Mountain Way" was the first of six songs performed live by Walsh in the Joe Walsh episode (episode 60) of Live from Daryl's House, which also includes discussion of the song.
- Stephen Stills of Crosby, Stills, and Nash often plays the song live and it appears on his 1975 live album, Stephen Stills Live.
- 1976 Michael Bolton, then known as Michael Bolotin, did a rendition on his sophomore album Everyday of My Life.
- 1977 Canadian trio Triumph covered this song on their Rock and Roll Machine album.
- 1981 British band Wild Horses included a live version as the B-side on their "I'll Give You Love" single; it also appears as a bonus track on the 2013 re-issue of their Stand Your Ground album.
- 1992 Ween performed the song at the WTSR radio station.
- 1997 Slaughter covered it on their 1997 album, Revolution.
- 2005 artist Ozzy Osbourne covered this song in his Under Cover album.
- On October 9, 2010, at the Fourmile Fire Revival (a charity concert for the victims of the fire northwest of Boulder, CO in September), the String Cheese Incident with special guest Trey Anastasio of the Jam Band Phish performed "Rocky Mountain Way".
- 2012 Godsmack covered this song on their Live and Inspired album.
- Black Stone Cherry added the song to their regular set list for headlining shows in 2012.
The Colorado Rockies of Major League Baseball have played the song after every home win at Coors Field since 1995.
In 1998, ABC wanted to use a classic rock song for Monday Night Football that year, so they asked Walsh to rewrite the lyrics to "Rocky Mountain Way" for the quarterback John Elway of the Denver Broncos. "Rocky Mountain Elway" was the new title of the song and Walsh appeared in a video that ABC showed on the Monday Night Football.
- Owsinski, Bobby (2013). Bobby Owsinski's Deconstructed Hits: Classic Rock 1. Alfred Music. p. 51. ISBN 9781470614201.
...one of those quintessential rock songs... really just a blues shuffle...
- McFarlane, Ian (1999). "'The Party Boys' Entry". Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop. St Leonards, NSW: Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1865080721. Archived from the original on 19 April 2004. Retrieved 31 March 2012. Note: Archived [on-line] copy has limited functionality.