This post has been updated with two new spreads from the Hotel California Songbook, one with the music and one with lyrics, plus their accompanying photos.


Tucked away near the end of Hotel California is the last song Randy wrote during his tenure with the Eagles, “Try And Love Again.” Today, the song is considered a deep track, but in 1976, it was a hit with contemporary critics, who felt it was the highlight of the album. What sets it apart from Randy’s signature song, “Take It To The Limit,” in my opinion, is that it is all Randy. There are no Don Henley/Glenn Frey co-credits here. The lyrics are sweet, pure, and hopeful. The song deserved to be a hit, but perhaps it’s best that it has remained in obscurity and wasn’t overplayed on the radio, like the title track. Today, there are fans and music enthusiasts who prefer Side Two of Hotel California (starting with “Wasted time – Reprise”) to the more hit-heavy Side One. There is a reason for this. Side Two of Hotel California has the deep tracks and those are always the best songs.


Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Randy Meisner, Glenn Frey, Don Felder.
©David Alexander, 1976

What the critics said:

“Randy Meisner’s lead vocal on ‘Try And Love Again’ is hypnotic.”
–Boston Globe, April 17th, 1977

“Bassist Randy Meisner sings the album’s finest cut, ‘Try And Love Again.’ Walsh again stands out musically here (on Gretsch guitar), and Meisner coos in an excellent vocal performance.”
–Sacramento Express, March 3rd, 1977

Meisner’s ‘Try And Love Again’ is one of the album’s strong points–a wonderfully constructed ballad.”
–Fort Worth Star-Telegram, January 2nd, 1977

“In ‘Try And Love Again,’ with its eerie ‘These Days’ opening hook, the spotlight is on Randy Meisner and it is definitely one of the album’s highlights.”
–Press and Sun-Bulletin (Binghamton, NY), January 29th, 1977

Music spread for “Try And Love Again” from the Hotel California Songbook, 1976

“‘Try And Love Again’ is bassist Randy Meisner’s only written contribution to Hotel California, and even though it’s a far cry from his ‘Take It To The Limit,’ it’s one of the few typical things on the new LP. Containing elements of folk, country and rock music, it’s another semi-bitter love song served up in a convincing manner. Meisner’s vocals, as always, are perfectly tailored to the lyrical message.”
–Daily Record Sun (Morristown, NJ), January 2nd, 1977

“‘Try and Love Again’ is the album’s most hopeful, upbeat song with Randy Meisner vowing to forget a lost love for a new one.”
–Atlanta Constitution, January 8th, 1977

“Randy Meisner’s ‘Try And Love Again’ is a nicely designed ballad with an outwardly romantic theme.”
–Los Angeles Times, December 12th, 1976

“Bassist Randy Meisner adds one of the most appealing tunes, the Buffalo Springfield-ish ‘Try And Love Again.'”
–Wichita Falls Record-News, April 16th, 1977

“‘Try And Love Again’ is ambitiously conceived and executed with polish, Glenn Frey’s guitar cruising in counterpoint against a euphonious vocal arrangement.”
–San Diego Union, January 9th, 1977

“It’s not until the next-to-last cut on the LP, ‘Try and Love Again’ by the underestimated Randy Meisner, that we have a song of any real urgency. Aided by some ringing guitar resonance, it’s the only cut with any ‘lift’ to it.”
–Circus, March 17, 1977

Outtake (composite) photo from the Hotel California sessions by Norman Seeff

Some critics felt that “Try And Love Again” was the only song that represented the Eagles signature sound:

Traditionally, the Eagles have come to be known for fluid, upbeat country with a pinch of rock and a dash roll now and then. For the dyed-in-the-wool fan, there is plenty of that on the album, too. “Try And Love Again,” and the title cut, ‘Hotel California’ are very good examples of what has helped the Eagles feather their nest.”
–The Times (Shreveport, LA), January 9th, 1977

“There are remnants (as in ‘Try And Love Again’) of the strong lead vocals backed by a sweet chorus [of the early Eagles].”
–Green Bay Press Gazette, January 2nd, 1977


Performances

There are two documented live performances of “Try & Love Again”: March 19th, 1977 at the War Memorial Auditorium in Rochester, New York, and March 21st, 1977 the Capital Centre in Largo, Maryland.* The latter concert was filmed, but the footage of “Try & Love Again” has never been released.

*The Eagles played two nights at the Capital Centre, but the review of the second night does not mention “Try & Love Again.”


Album Credits

Credit for “Try And Love Again” from Hotel California album inner sleeve (1976)

Listen

“Try And Love Again” – Eagles (1976)

Lyrics spread for “Try And Love Again” from Hotel California Songbook, 1976

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17 comments

  1. Thanks Jessica! Love the critical reception this song was given….still clueless as to why this was not released as a single. Best track on the album, in my opinion!!!!!

    1. Hi Sue, I read it was definitely lined up to be their third single from the album, however it was pulled when Randy decided to leave.

      1. Oops 4th single! I have hopefully temporarily forgotten where I got this info however know it was from a reliable source. It may have been an interview with Glenn or a transcript of interviews with production guys on Hotel California album including Bill Szymczk. Not quite sure but will certainly let you know if I find the source.
        Would have been a big hit I think. Apart from it being a great song Randy was so popular especially after TITTL.

  2. Wonderful song, wonderful man. Randy Meisner was the best of the Eagles. When he left, the Eagles were never the same.

  3. My favorite Eagles song. A crime it was not included on their Greatest Hits Vol I, the biggest selling cd of the last century. The royalties would have made Randy a millionaire many times over. When the band forced WB to re-audit sales, Jackson Browne and Jack Tempchin each received windfall checks we’ll over $10 million each for Take it Easy and Peaceful Easy Feeling respectively. Randy deserved same.

    1. I can appreciate the sentiment, however “Try And Love Again” could not have been included on Vol. 1 (aka Their Greatest Hits: 1971-1975) because Hotel California had not yet been released. This album came out a few months prior to Hotel. The Greatest Hits album does include Randy’s song, “Take It To The Limit,” therefore he receives royalties from it.

      1. Ofcourse it’s on “Hotel California” which must yield good royalties!
        I heard or read Glenn saying it was definitely planned to be released as a single from the album however Randy leaving changed that plan.

      2. My bad. You make a very good point. It was not included on the GH Vol II either. I suppose a case could be made that “hits” implies only singles. I imagine the band would also use the same excuse for leaving it off their double-cd, 2003, 33-track compilation Very Best Of. But nobody could argue it wasn’t one of their “best” songs and didn’t deserve inclusion. I mean, Those Shoes, In the City and Please Come Home for Christmas? Ol 55 isn’t even an Eagles song. Just sayin’ IMHO, spite is the only explanation for not giving this song its due

      3. I completely agree that “Try and Love Again” should have been given its due. But most bands have very little to do with Greatest Hits or Best Of compilations. They are strictly put out by record companies to make a quick buck. Henley has stated that the first Greatest Hits album was put out by Asylum because they felt the band was taking too long with Hotel California. The band wasn’t happy about it because they didn’t like the idea of their songs being lifted out of the original context of the albums, especially songs from Desperado, which was a concept album. They felt the songs lost their meaning if they were separated out. I can see their point. The same could be said of Hotel California. So, in this regard, it’s probably best that “Try & Love Again” was never put on a greatest hits compilation and is kept in its original context.

  4. That does sound like something Glenn would have said. Love Glenn, enormously talented but never quite understood the “bitterness” regarding Randy’s decision to leave.

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