Classic West

Eagles will take the stage at Classic West in a few short hours and we aren't there.

We thought about going, but as we posted in a previous blog entry, finances, schedules and the fact that we just don't like stadium/festival shows played a part in deciding to skip this one.

We've been there for a lot of the band's big moments. We were in the room when they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. We rang in the new millennium with the band in Los Angeles.  We were at Glenn's last public show. We've been there for a lot.

And now it's sinking in that we aren't there for this. Hearing Jim Ladd talk about how everyone is rooting for the Eagles tonight caused a bit of a pang. We are rooting for them. We're thinking of all of the emotions that must be present...the bittersweet nature of performing without Glenn for the first time and the pride everyone must be feeling towards Deacon for stepping in for his dad in what has to be a pretty scary situation for any young performer.

There's a photograph out there on the Internet of a toddler Deacon clad in Power Rangers jammies, holding a guitar that's way too big for him.  His dad's arms are around him, guiding him and showing him how to hit just the right notes.  We're sure that same situation will be repeated tonight (minus the Power Ranger jammies). 

Tonight marks a new chapter in the story of our favorite band. It's a different chapter, but we're excited to see how it all turns out. We're looking forward to the reviews and the reports from fans who are there. We're certain this will be a fitting celebration of what Glenn meant to both all of the people on stage and the people filling the stands.

They are the Eagles from Los Angeles and tonight, despite the tragic circumstances, they have come home to soar one more time. We are all there in spirit with them.


The story of a story....

We've been covering Eagles news for a long time. We used to have to hunt really hard for the news...searching the Random Notes section of Rolling Stone for mentions or waiting for the next copy of ICE (International CD Exchange) to find out if anyone had new music coming out. We'd make a point to watch Kurt Loder on MTV tell us about the Week in Rock and hope there would be something we could report. 

We got information from community members too. It might come in the form of a post on Prodigy from someone in Boston who saw Don was in town for a Walden Woods Project meeting or a person might pop into IRC chat who had seen Joe at a baseball training event down in Florida. We took notes and we wrote it up. 

These days, though, Facebook and Google alerts make news instantaneous and things can feel overwhelming for Eagles fans.  Twitter keeps us up to date...sometimes minute by minute through a concert or appearance. We see photos the night of a concert...not days or weeks later. We don't just hear that Timothy was on the radio in Omaha...we can listen live or download the podcast later. It's amazing what technology can do, it really is.  One thing we've learned, though, is that in order to navigate this onslaught of news, you have to be a careful reader and consumer of information. 

Let's take the recent story about Don revealing how Deacon Frey would be appearing at the Classic East / Classic West shows this summer. 

We saw a notice on Twitter that Don would be appearing on a Dallas sports radio show. We were at work and super busy so we didn't get a chance to post about it ahead of time. Lisa made a point, though, to turn on the radio while she was grading papers after school and caught the interview. As soon as Don made the announcement, knowing this was huge news, Lisa typed it up and put it on the Fastlane Facebook page. Now we aren't claiming we got the scoop. Obviously, the guys at The Ticket did.....but immediately after that our post was shared and re-shared in groups and on pages all over Facebook (The initial post has been seen by over 31,000 people!) That's awesome. That's the point of share information. What happens, though, is that other bloggers and news outlets see these shares and re-shares. They found the original interview and wrote articles about it, quoting extensively from what Don had to say rather than just directing people to go listen to the interview for themselves (we initially wrote a recap before we knew the station would be posting it).  There are now dozens of these articles that are all the same because they were working with the same source material. What's interesting (and amusing), is that some of them don't seem to have listened very carefully. Some of them get the point and some don't. Check out these headlines (and this is just one screen grab)

Check out the variety of headlines. Don reveals Glenn's replacement? Nobody can replace Glenn. In fact, Don even says that. There is an Eagles tour? We are talking 2 dates. That isn't a tour! Notice that the reputable publication, Billboard, gets it the most correct (though they have bungled headlines in the past). All of these stories are swirling around Facebook getting posted and reposted in the various Eagles groups. What is missing, though, is the context. All of these stories are built on one interview. One interview. None of them have anything new to offer. There is no additional reporting, no further comment. I don't know what can be done about this. Fans get excited seeing a "new" interview and we get that. It is exciting. It just gets overwhelming. 

For us that's why things are a little frustrating and things feel so cluttered.  When there are so many groups and so many stories, it seems that this is the only thing popping up on timelines. We have one interview and hundreds of stories all saying the same thing...unless they are getting it wrong. Here's what we mean:

One radio station actually quoted from our recap of the interview. They didn't read carefully, though. They reported that when Glenn was ill, his daughter Taylor got married. Our story didn't mention Taylor. We said that Don's eldest daughter got married. They read our recap, misinterpreted what was said, did research to find out that Glenn's daughter's name was Taylor and went with the sensational "scoop". When we wrote to the station to point out this pretty significant error, we got back a rude message in ALL CAPS telling us they had taken care of it. Wow. 

So that's the state of Eagles news these days. When something breaks, it breaks hard and it is everywhere. As fans and thoughtful consumers of information, we might just have to take a breath and Take it Easy :)

Things have changed. How did you find Eagles news in the past?