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To The Limit The Untold Story of the Eagles Hardcover – Oct 1 1998

3.1 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Little Brown Trade Division; 1 edition (Oct. 1 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316233706
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316233705
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 3.2 x 24.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 612 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #536,982 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Veteran rock writer Eliot (Down Thunder Road: The Making of Bruce Springsteen) refuses to take it easy on the most commercially successful supergroup of the 1970s in this unauthorized, warts-and-all biography. As dons of the so-called Avocado Mafia, a loose association of singers and songwriters who first came together in Southern California in the late 1960s, the Eagles are, for Eliot, representative figures in a fascinating pop-culture drama. In tough, sometimes lyrical prose, Eliot shows how Don Henley, Glenn Frey, Bernie Leadon and Randy MeisnerAthe original members of the groupAbecame the top-selling and most influential rock band of the Me Decade by combining laid-back attitude with self-consciously eclectic musicianship. Nor did it hurt the group's quest for fame, Eliot makes clear, to have brilliant business and PR men such as David Geffen and Irving Azoff on the side of the Eagles from the beginning. Eliot's a savvy enough storyteller not to let in-depth analysis of the aural and business dimensions of the Eagles' saga get in the way of good dish: the book brims with anecdotes about the band's now-legendary hotel-room demolition sessions, prodigious substance abuse and tireless womanizing. Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt and David Crosby join more incongruous notables such as James Cagney, Kenny Rogers and Ronald Reagan's politically contrary daughter, Patti Davis, to make Eliot's account even more engaging. If the writing's purple at times, it's only because the band members' colorful excesses demand such treatment. Photos not seen by PW.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Considering Eliot's previous controversial biographies, including Walt Disney: Hollywood's Dark Prince (LJ 5/1/93) and Down Thunder Road: The Making of Bruce Springsteen (LJ 8/92), it's not surprising that ex-Eagle Don Henley tried to halt publication of this well-researched study of America's biggest band of the 1970s. The artist and the author eventually reached a truce, with the reticent Henley sitting for interviews, and this may explain why some unsavory details (such as Henley's 1980 drug bust) are lightly glossed over. Eliot gives little insight into what made the band tick, but he does provide an excellent contextualization of the early 1970s L.A. rock scene, and he offers fascinating character studies of Eagle compadres Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt, and J.D. Souther, as well as music biz barons David Geffen and Irving Azoff. The generous appendix includes extensive notes and a detailed discography. Recommended for popular music collections.
-ALloyd Jansen, Stockton-San Joaquin Cty. P.L., CA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on April 22 2004
Format: Hardcover
I am filing this "review" in the hopes of bringing down the average number of stars for this truly awful book. I love juicy rock bios, so I thought this would be just the book for me. Look how wrong you can be! The two main problems with this book are as follows:
1) It is unspeakably boring. I honestly couldn't even finish it; the grind just wore me down.
2) Factual errors. Others have already pointed this out, but it is especially galling to see George Grantham (the superb musician and singer from Poco) referred to as George Lantham. And how 'bout that gig in Hawthorne Beach? Where the heck is that? Somewhere between the City of Hawthorne and Hermosa Beach, perhaps. You get the idea . . . . It would drive you out of your mind if you weren't already bored out of your mind.
Perhaps the fact that Amazon has 62 used copies ("from $2.95") gives you the best indication of this book's overall merit. Proceed at your own risk.
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Format: Hardcover
Having long been a fan of the Eagles, I was quite ready to read a biography of this splendid, though somewhat lacking Southern California band. Eliot does a fair job of presenting their history, but he lacks in descriptions about the making of the music, and he focuses too much on Don Henley. On one hand Eliot seemed to be fixated with Henley, and on the other hand he seemed to have an axe to grind with him. To The Limit really came off more as a Don Henley book, than an Eagles book.
For one thing there are too few quotes from Glenn Frey, who in my opinion really gave the band its heart. Just because Henley began singing almost half of the songs on the last two albums, doesn't mean he should have. I can think of several songs, that Glenn Frey could have sung just as well. I'd also like to have learned more about why Leadon and Meisner quit. Though Eliot did explain it in some detail, there was much missing. It would have been interesting to have heard from Glenn Frey on those issues, as well as from Leadon and Meisner.
The book is heavy in quotes from Henley, but short on quotes from any other band members. Much of the material seems to come from other previously published material, i.e. Rolling Stone reviews, interviews, articles, and much of it comes from Mansion On the Hill, a detracting book written in the early 90s which includes a section on Geffen and Azoff.
While is was interesting reading about Henley's take on Joe Walsh joining the band, I would have really liked reading about Joe's take on joining the band. In my opinion, Walsh's guitar playing saved the Eagles from fading into country-rock mediocraty.
I would have also liked to have learned more about Felder's role in the band.
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By A Customer on Sept. 7 2003
Format: Hardcover
I was interested to read that Don Henley wanted to stop publication of this book as it seemed to me to be extremely pro-Henley particularly in its account of the leadership struggle. It is interesting enough but far too tabloid in its approach, that is, the Eagles' music is secondary to the endless stories of drugs, womanizing etc. Is anyone really surprised by this anymore? As a devoted Eagles fan I hope that someone someday will write about their music. And on a personal level I would like to hear the story told from Glenn Frey's perspective.
Having read other reviews of this book I would like to expand on how heavily focused it is on Don Henley, to the exclusion of Glenn Frey, who whether the author admits it or not was and is the Eagles' leader and driving force. Frey's solo career was admittedly not as successful as Henley's but it is all but ignored. Some gratuitous comments about their respective physical appearances (again, pro-Henley) are annoying. Even any attempt at analysing why the two of them are both such great singers and songwriters never occurs. The assumption that it was Henley who was responsible for the majority of the Eagles' lyrics is a fatuous cliche that all true Eagles fans have long abandoned, and as for Hotel California being about Henley and no-one else, this should be treated with the contempt it deserves. Then there is the way Henley's arrest in 1980 is totally glossed over, while a similar incident that Frey experienced while shooting a movie is over-emphasised. Frey had a car crash, while Eagles fans know what happened to Henley. Some attempt at balance occurs at the end when the band have reformed, but it is too late to save the book. Avoid.
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Format: Hardcover
What a disappointment this book was! 'Hoping to learn the in-depth history of my all-time favorite band, this book left me with more questions than it did answers. Mr. Eliot could have done us all a favor and left out alot of the behind the scenes dealings of the music industry. While a fraction of the material was relevant to story of the Eagles, the majority of it was not. Few kind words were said about any of the band's members save for Don Henley - who was in fact, the chief reason for the break-up of the band in the first place. This fact seems to be lost amidst Mr. Eliot's ranting about the solo success Henley had after the Eagles, and going too far in-depth on Henley's personal life. True, there is some interesting information about the band's early years and their trials and tribulations during the time when Rock and Roll was taking on a new face. Also of some interest is the fact that Kenny Rodgers took an interest in the band very early only to see them go elsewhere and find incredible success without him. But overall, the book says little that is flattering about anyone other than Henley, and to a far lesser extent, Glenn Frey. Perhaps Mr. Eliot should have researched Randy Meisner's time with Poco a little more diligently; the members of that band had nothing but praise for him. Little praise is given to the talents and contributions of Don Felder, Bernie Leadon and Timothy Schmidt. The big question I have after reading the book is; " Did Mr. Eliot owe Don Henley a favor?" Do yourself a favor and wait for the paperback version or wiat until you see it on the bargain table.
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