Recorded at the Forum in Los Angeles in October 1976 – just months before the album’s release – the live rendition of “Hotel California” finds the Eagles in expert form, with electric guitar injecting a new kind of mystique into the song’s distinct opening acoustic melody. Onstage, Don Henley’s vocals carry grit against the band’s backing harmonies, while Joe Walsh and Don Felder tear through their closing guitar duel with precision and surprising flair.
Per the Los Angeles Times, the live version of “Hotel California” is one of 10 tracks recorded at the Forum that will appear on the second disc of the Hotel California 40th anniversary deluxe edition. The set will also include the original album, plus a Blu-ray disc containing a new high-resolution stereo mix of the record. A larger box set will also include a booklet featuring previously unpublished photos of the Eagles from the Hotel California era, a replica tour book and a poster.
The Eagles are in the middle of a mini North American tour that wraps October 27th in Detroit. The band returned to the stage this summer at Classic fest gigs in Los Angeles, New York and Seattle. The shows marked the Eagles’ first without founding member Glenn Frey, who died in 2016. In his place, the group’s new lineup features Frey’s son, Deacon, and country singer Vince Gill.