Song of the Day #5,434: ‘After the Thrill is Gone’ – Eagles

Continuing my look at the albums of 1975…

One of These Nights was the Eagles’ fourth studio album and their first to top the Billboard albums chart. It went quadruple platinum, giving the band the breakthrough hit they’d been circling for several years. A year later, their first greatest hits collection was released and went on to become the best-selling album ever in the United States (its 38 million in sales tops even Michael Jackson’s Thriller).

One of These Nights is a true bridge album for the Eagles. In addition to marking the moment they became mega-stars, it was also the final album featuring founding member Bernie Leadon, who left the band over disagreements about its musical direction.

Leadon was replaced by Joe Walsh, who helped move the band away from their country-folk roots into harder rock territory.

I think the Leadon-to-Walsh transition also explains my own feelings about the Eagles. After dismissing them for most of my life, I finally took a deeper dive into their music and discovered my real problem is with Hotel California, their most popular album by far and one I really dislike.

It turns out I really love the material that came before Hotel California, which suggests I’m a Bernie Leadon man at heart.

One of These Nights is a Bernie Leadon album, so I dig it. In addition to hits ‘Lyin’ Eyes,’ ‘Take it to the Limit’ and the title track, it features a couple of sublime mid-tempo ballads in ‘Hollywood Waltz’ and ‘After the Thrill is Gone.’ The other four tracks are mostly filler, including a nearly 7-minute instrumental track, but it all goes down easy.

Same dances in the same old shoes
Some habits that you just can’t lose
There’s no telling what a man might use
After the thrill is gone
The flame rises but it soon descends
Empty pages and a frozen pen
You’re not quite lovers and you’re not quite friends
After the thrill is gone, oh
After the thrill is gone

What can you do when your dreams come true
And it’s not quite like you planned?
What have you done to be losing the one
You held it so tight in your hand well
Time passes and you must move on
Half the distance takes you twice as long
So you keep on singing for the sake of the song
After the thrill is gone
After the thrill is gone

You’re afraid you might fall out of fashion
And you’re feeling cold and small
Any kind of love without passion
That ain’t no kind of loving at all, well

Same dances in the same old shoes
You get too careful with the steps you choose
You don’t care about winning but you don’t want to lose
After the thrill is gone
After the thrill is gone
After the thrill is gone, oh
After the thrill is gone

3 thoughts on “Song of the Day #5,434: ‘After the Thrill is Gone’ – Eagles

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    So now your dislike of the song “Hotel California” has spread to the entire album? I don’t get that, but that’s why you have your taste and I have mine…

    • Clay says:

      I’ve always disliked the whole album, particularly ‘New Kid in Town’ and ‘Life in the Fast Lane.’ I do like ‘The Last Resort,’ so I’ll give it that.

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