Todays song is a song that is a lesser known song on the best album the Eagles ever put out. I have always had a special interest in B-side music and I am especially fond of this one.
If you have not had the chance to check out the music documentary History of the Eagles that was released earlier this year, I would strongly recommend checking it out. It is one of the best music documentaries I have ever seen. It gives a lot of great insight into the band and the highs and lows they experienced along the way. Just amazing to watch. If you want to buy it, you can order it here.
This song is slower and has a sad feel to it. It is a song that is filled with emotion. Here is what I think the song is talking about:
When we’re in relationships that fail, and the grief of that failure is still fresh, it’s easy to view the time you spent with that person as “wasted”, because the relationship ended. You devoted time getting to know someone and sharing yourself with them, and it seems that it’s all for naught, because that person no longer desires your company in that capacity. The girl in the song has experienced many such failures, and has become disheartened by them. She’s wasted so much time on relationships that she feels weren’t worth the investment since they failed her, and she’s weary at the prospect of wasting any more.
However, the point the singer is trying to express is that even though the outcome of these relationships wasn’t successful, that doesn’t mean the time was wasted, as hard as it may be for the girl to accept in her current emotional state. If you never experience failure, you never learn how to succeed. Although it’s unfortunate, sometimes success comes at this price. As Marilyn Monroe once said, “good things fall apart so better things can come together”.
And by the line “to keep it together, we got to leave it alone”, he means that we can’t try too hard in our pursuits. To achieve that success we desire that always seems like it’s taking too long in coming, sometimes we have to stop trying. The dichotomy of “together” and “alone” also express that the relationships, although they represented the togetherness the girl desires, weren’t the right ones. In order to finally find the person she wants to be with, she must be by herself for a while longer.
The lyrics to this song are very well done. This song represents failure and endurance at the same time and is a very powerful song indeed.
As a side note, this album came out and was topping the charts when I was born into this world so I feel a great sense of closeness with this song and this song in particular. If you have never heard this song before, I think you will really like it. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
Music video of the song.
Wasted Time Reprise.
Live recording of the song from the 2000’s. His voice still sounds so good.
Gov’t Mule doing a great cover of the song in 2009.
Warren Haynes cover version from 2012. What a voice!
Hotel California (Eagles Cover Band) doing a great cover of the song.
Wasted Time is a song that appears on the album Hotel California, which is the fifth studio album by the American rock band the Eagles, released on December 8, 1976. It is the first Eagles album without the appearance of founding member Bernie Leadon and the first album with Joe Walsh. It is also the last album featuring original bass player and singer Randy Meisner. The album became the band’s best-selling studio album, and their highest, with over 16 million copies sold in the U.S. alone and over 32 million copies worldwide. The album topped the charts and won the band two Grammy awards for “Hotel California” and “New Kid in Town“. The album was nominated for Album of the Year but lost to Fleetwood Mac‘s Rumours.
The album yielded three Top 20 singles, “New Kid in Town”, “Hotel California”, and “Life in the Fast Lane“. “New Kid in Town” and “Hotel California” both topped the Billboard Hot 100, and “Life in the Fast Lane” reached number 11 on the charts. The album was ranked number 37 on Rolling Stone‘s list of “The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time“. The album further established the group as the most successful American band of the decade, making the Eagles household names. The song “Hotel California” is considered by many to be one of the greatest rock songs of all time; it was ranked number 49 on Rolling Stone‘s list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”. The guitar duet at the end of the song was performed by Don Felder and Joe Walsh. The album also features “Wasted Time”, “Victim of Love”, and “The Last Resort“.
Hotel California was the Eagles’ fifth album of original material and became a critical success and a major commercial hit; since its release in late 1976, it has sold over 16 million copies in the U.S. alone. The album was at number 1 for eight weeks in early 1977 (non-consecutively), and included two tracks which became number 1 hits as singles on the Billboard Hot 100: “New Kid in Town”, on February 26, 1977, and “Hotel California” on May 7, 1977.
In 2001, the TV network VH1 named Hotel California number 38 on 100 Greatest Albums of All Time. Hotel California was ranked 13th in a 2005 survey held by British television’s Channel 4 to determine the 100 greatest albums of all time. In 2003, the album was ranked number 37 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.
Following its original release on standard LP, cassette and 8-track cartridge formats, the album was considered for Quadraphonic release in early 1977; this idea was dropped following the demise of the Quadraphonic format. However, 25 years later, the album was released in a Multichannel 5.1 DVD-Audio disc. On August 17, 2011, the album was released on a hybrid SACD in Japan in The Warner Premium Sound series, containing both a stereo and a 5.1 mix.
Members of the Eagles have described the album as a metaphor for the perceived decline of America into materialism and decadence. In an interview with Dutch magazine ZigZag shortly before the album’s release, Don Henley said:
This is a concept album, there’s no way to hide it, but [unlike the Eagles’ earlier concept album, 1973’s Desperado] it’s not set in the old West, the cowboy thing, you know. It’s more urban this time (…) It’s our bicentennial year, you know, the country is 200 years old, so we figured since we are the Eagles and the Eagle is our national symbol, that we were obliged to make some kind of a little bicentennial statement using California as a microcosm of the whole United States, or the whole world, if you will, and to try to wake people up and say ‘We’ve been okay so far, for 200 years, but we’re gonna have to change if we’re gonna continue to be around.’
It was the first time that Don took it upon himself to write an epic story and we were already starting to worry about the environment… we’re constantly screwing up paradise and that was the point of the song and that at some point there is going to be no more new frontiers. I mean we’re putting junk, er, garbage into space now.
by Don Henley and Glenn Frey
With your little head, down in your hand
Oh, my God, you can’t believe it’s happening again
Your baby’s gone, and you’re all alone
and it looks like the end.And you’re back out on the street.
And you’re tryin’ to remember.
How will you start it over?
You don’t know what became.
You don’t care much for a stranger’s touch,
But you can’t hold your man.You never thought you’d be alone this far down the line
And I know what’s been on your mind
You’re afraid it’s all been wasted timeThe autumn leaves have got you thinking about the first time that you fell
You didn’t love the boy too much, no, no, you just loved the boy too well,
So you live from day to day, and you dream about tomorrow, oh.
And the hours go by like minutes and the shadows come to stay
So you take a little something to make them go away
And I could have done so many things, baby
If I could only stop my mind from wondrin’ what
I left behind and from worrying ’bout this wasted time
Oh, another love has come and gone
Oh, and the years keep rushing on
I remember what you told me before you went out on your own:
“Sometimes to keep it together, we got to leave it alone.”
So you can get on with your search, baby, and I can get on with mine
And maybe someday we will find , that it wasn’t really wasted time
Oh hoo, ooh, oh,
Ooh, ooh, mm