Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tuesday Change Up - Standing on a Corner

"Well, I'm a standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona such a fine sight to see, It's a girl my Lord in a flat-bed Ford Slowin' down to take a look at me".....

Forty years ago today (May 1, 1972) the Eagles debuted their first single "Take It Easy". The single would climb to number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The song has endured four decades as one of the Eagles signature songs, included on all of their live and compilation albums. It is also listed on The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.

See Cedar's Bonus at the end of the post for a rather dated video of "Take It Easy".

Take It Easy was written Eagles Glenn Frey and his close friend Jackson Browne. Bass player Randy Meisner sings the harmony vocal in the beginning of this verse with Frey, but drummer Don Henley is singing harmony at the end of the verse ("Though we will never be here again...). Bernie Leadon provides the lead guitar and distinctive banjo parts, as well as harmony vocals.

With five number one singles, six Grammys, five American Music Awards, and six number one albums, the Eagles were one of the most successful musical acts of the 1970s. At the end of the 20th century, two of their albums, Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) and Hotel California, ranked among the 20 best-selling albums in the U.S. according to the Recording Industry Association of America. Hotel California is ranked 37th in Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and the band was ranked #75 on the magazine's 2004 list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

About Winslow

Until the 1960's, Winslow was the largest town in northern Arizona. The town enjoyed a prominent location on Route 66. Yet this prominence faded and nearly disappeared when I-40, which makes a wide swing around the town by-passed the community in the late 1970's. Tourism based businesses felt the crunch and downtown businesses closed their doors.

The song by the Eagles couldn't have come at a better time, Winslow was dying and "the song" became a focal point to draw travelers off the Interstate.

In 1994 Winslow started thinking outside the box, and decided to focus on the Eagles song.

Within five years the town raised the money to build Standin on the Corner Park.  The park includes a life-size bronze statue and a John Pugh mural commemorating the song, The statue which stands near a lamp post, securing a guitar between his right hand and the shoe of his right foot. Above his head, a metal sign, crafted in the style of U.S. Route shields, displays the words "Standin' on the corner". The mural on the wall behind the statue is that of a storefront, and includes what would appear to be the reflection of a red flatbed Ford pickup truck. The second floor of the mural features an eagle perched in one of the windows and a partially visible couple inside an upstairs room.

     Another view of the mural and of Route 66.

Take It Easy

Well I'm a runnin' down the road try'n to loosen my load
I've got seven women on my mind
Four that want to own me, two that want to stone me
One says she's a friend of mine

Take it easy, take it easy
Don't let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy
Lighten up while you still can
Don't even try to understand
Just find a place to make your stand, and take it easy

Well, I'm a standin' on a corner in Winslow, Arizona
Such a fine sight to see
It's a girl my Lord in a flat-bed Ford
Slowin' down to take a look at me

Come on, baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me
We may lose and we may win, though we will never be here again
So open up I'm climbin' in, so take it easy

Well, I'm a runnin' down the road tryin' to loosen my load
Got a world of trouble on my mind
Lookin' for a lover who won't blow my cover,
she's so hard to find

Take it easy, take it easy
Don't let the sound of your own wheels make you crazy
Come on baby, don't say maybe
I gotta know if your sweet love is gonna save me

Cedar's Bonus: Jackson Browne will preform Saturday July 14 at Charlotte's Belk Theater. Tickets go on sale Friday at 10 a.m. Prices are $49.50 to $84.50 and are available at the Blumenthal Arts box office, by calling 704-372-1000 or online at www.carolinatix.org. One dollar from each ticket will be donated to charity and special VIP and benefit seating (which includes a larger charitable donation) is also available.

And a hat tip to Courtney Devores and her Charlotte Observer sponsored blog Sound Bites for the above timely info.

Don't laugh, in 1972 these people were considered "cool" I also think they were high as all. But the talent on stage, Linda Ronstadt, Jackson Browne, and the Eagles now that is just awesome.

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