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Thread: Felder's "Heaven and Hell" Discussion Thread

  1. #11
    Stuck on the Border luvthelighthouse's Avatar
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    I finished the book last night and have SEVERAL comments I need to make... but I don't have time now... If anyone cares, I'll probably write my review this weekend. So many things to address...

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    Moderator Brooke's Avatar
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    I just thought Felder came off very whiny. It really made me think less of him as a person the way he constantly berated Glenn. It did not make me think less of Glenn or Don.

    He sounds like he wrote all of HC, when, I believe, he only wrote the music. (which is awesome, btw!)

    I did enjoy reading about his connections with the Allman brothers, Stephen Stills, and Tom Petty.
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  3. #13
    Stuck on the Border luvthelighthouse's Avatar
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    Ok, my thoughts on H&H. First off, I think it should have been titled either, "Poor, poor millionaire RockStar vicitim" or, Glenn Frey the Indian Giver - How he gave me fame and fortune in 1974, and took it away in 2001.

    I think the whole tone of he book really begins when he states how Glenn called him up to ask him to play some slide guitar on a song, and his reply was "sure", then he finishes up the details with " I scribbled down the details of the back of a supermarket bill and stuffed it in my back pocket w/out giving it a second thought. Putting on my tool belt, I got down to the more important business at hand". Okay, first off, he acts so flippant about getting this call... it's unrealistic to believe he was unphased by this call. So, that is why I say this sets the tone. In other words, to me, it's his attempt to act like he never really cared about being an Eagle, but just kinda settled. Like they needed him more than he needed them.

    His next comment of "I thought joining the Eagles would mean less money than I was getting doubling for David Blue or Crosby & Nash" WHATEVER!!! He freaking knew they were a cash cow. Hello, touring band with the backing of a major label. Yeah, I'm so sure he almost thought he'd be making less money. He knew he'd be making at least the same if nothing else.

    Next, his attempt to justify his infidelity, "3E parties were organized to perfection and so entirely accepted as normal, that I completely lost sight of who I was" - Okay, that line I buy... I totally understand, when in Rome and being lost in a moment, especially being a rockstar... but then he loses me with, "half the time I was so high I didn't know what I was doing anyway... I defy any man to resist temptation in such circumstances" - To me,that's just making an excuse for his behavior. If he just would have left it as, basically saying he was a dog lost in the moment, I would have respected him more.

    Then he goes on about how Glenn and Henley had personal assistances and what not... okay, so if he wanted those things, why didn't he put some people on the payroll instead of whining about it?

    Now, being a wife and mother, this just pissed me off! Felder's on the road for 10 months and Susan is home alone raising the kids. She is pretty much a single parent. He also kept saying, (paraphrasing) "I'd do anything for Susan and the kids"... yeah, except for come home and stay sober! Even when he was in town recording, he'd crash at the studio because he was too wasted to drive home. That is hardly doing "anything" for them. That's pretty much doing whatever he wanted. Anyway, this is what really ticked me off, when he claims the marriage therapist said the fact that when he came home from tour and wanted to relax w/his family but couldn't because Susan was calling all the shots, that by doing so, "the effect had been to make me feel less and less involved in family life and more and more periphery, which, had helped push me into the arms of other women". Is this Hack serious??? I mean, really, lets blame Susan for running her household alone for ten months of the year, and then not falling down like a fragile wife when he was home those handful of weeks... yeah, it was really Susan fault he turned to other women. Oh, it makes me so mad!

    Another thing that made me mad was when Susan started her jewelry business and he states, "with my emotional and financial support"... "I was all for it, and invested heavily in the business to give her enough capital to get started". LOSER!!! I'm sorry, but they had been married for several years, and that income from the Eagles was joint, as far as man and wife are concerned. He acts like he was some hero for giving her money... again, hello, it was her money too... they were married!!!! Hack! Finally, when the Eagles were no more, and he left her, he pretty much blamed HER for her never being available to him. Again, HE was never there for her the first 15+ years of marriage. Karma sure can be a bit@h, 'eh Don.

    The part were he discusses being inducted into the Hall of Fame is unsettling to me. I really wish I know what really happened. I don't recall them being inducted, and I can't find it anywhere online... but I wish I could see their speeches. In any case, Felder states how ackward it was to have all seven of them together. He states that Glenn and Henley shunned Randy and Bernie. However, I recall reading an article in which Randy stated he was nervous about attending, but then everyone started joking around and he felt more comfortable and happy to be there... So, I wish Felder wouldn't have tainted that moment for me... because I want to believe that for that night, seven guys were proud to be in America's best selling band.

    Now, one of my favorite parts of is when he states he moved out of the house he and Susan shared, and was embarrassed to be living in a one story building off Mulholland Drive. Then goes on to describe how he was going to help an assistance bring all his Christmas gifts inside (it sounded so vain and trashy when I read it)... but the very best was when he discovered Henley and Irving didn't get him anything and "I stood there shivering in the driveway as the electric gates slid shut behind him". - Here is where you will find why I dubbed him the Poor Poor Millionaire RockStar Victim.

    Then, he gets fired... Okay... I have NO clue if he deserved it or not. I have no idea why Glenn and Don fought him so hard on seeing financials unless they were indeed trying to screw him. I'm sure Don and Glenn were no angles in the financial liberties they took from the Eagles... but on the other hand... I'm sure they really did feel they deserved more. They were founding members, they were a strong songwriting team, they were the primary "voices" of the Eagles. As we've seen, other bassists and guitars can come and go... but you can never replace the vocal stylings of Don and Glenn. I can understand why they felt they were "worth" more. Also, I'm sure Felder really did feel like he was getting raw deal. I'd proabably have been pissed too... but in the end, how much money do people really need anyway.

    So, if you read through all this, thank you! It was long, and winded... but I had to vent my frustrations of this book... so there you have it... my book review.

    One last thing... I'm SO impressed that with how stoned and drunk they were that music and voices are crystal clear when they were performing!

  4. #14
    Moderator Ive always been a dreamer's Avatar
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    Okay – here are some of my observations about Felder’s book.

    First of all, I was really hoping that he would really give us some objective details and insight about the inner workings of the band, particularly after the HFO resumption. Those of us who are interested have a pretty good idea about what went on in the volatile ‘70’s when a typical day went something like sex, drugs, and rock ‘n roll (hmmm - I wonder if it was in that order ). Obviously, I was disappointed about the lack of details. The book was titled “Heaven and Hell” – I just don’t think Heaven got equal time.

    Now – I am not silly enough to believe that the book was going to be totally objective – after all, it is Felder’s version of what happened. I also acknowledge that I am biased, but I like to think that it’s not at the expense of losing total objectivity. I certainly don’t put Glenn and Don on a pedestal, but I really was surprised at the degree of Felder’s unapologetic, slanted version of events. These guys were young, good-looking, rich, famous, talented, high on controlled substances, and immature. Of course, all of them contributed to the discourse within the band. And since Glenn and Don had emerged as the leaders of the band, it makes sense that the spotlight was on them more. I just think Felder would have come across as more credible if he had also acknowledged some of this. Instead, he comes across as a whiny, self-indulgent, ungrateful, immature millionaire rock star who thinks he’s been victimized. And quite frankly, I think that is what a lot of us find a little hard to swallow about his book.

    Now – I do believe that Felder honestly thinks he was wronged by Irving, Glenn, and Don. Whether or not that is true, I have no idea. However, his main complaints seem to go back to when he was “forced” to sign the contract at the beginning of the resumption. I can only say this – in my world, I get to renegotiate my salary annually. If I don’t like the offer, I can refuse it and find another job. However, once I accept the terms, even if I don’t particularly like them, then I feel I am obligated to shut up, move on, and do my job to the best of my abilities without bitching and complaining. That appears to be the road that Joe and Tim took, and they are still in the band. Is that fair??? I say yes – even though it may not be democratic - but then, the band is no longer a democracy. As long as they were forthcoming with the terms of his contract, and he agreed to those terms, he should have accepted it and moved on. I think the crux of Felder’s problem is that he was no longer treated as an equal, and he just couldn’t seem to “get over it”. As talented of a guitarist as he is, I don’t think he was ever an equal contributor to the band, and therefore, it is understandable that he eventually wasn’t treated as such. Some people could argue that he was “overpaid” from 1973 –1980 when he was receiving the same cut as Glenn and Don.

    Another thing that bothered me a lot is how Felder repeatedly claimed that he wasn't doing all of the bitching and complaining just for himself, but also for Tim and Joe, and, yes, even Randy and Bernie. I found it very disgusting and insulting that he believes this. These are all grown men who can speak, think, and act for themselves. They don’t need a self-appointed savior to protect them from the “Gods”.

    Lastly, the most unsettling part of the entire book for me was the way Felder portrays his firing. It turns my stomach to picture him calling Glenn to beg for his job back. If things had been as awful as he would have you believe, then you would have thought he would have been throwing his hand up and shouting “Free at last, free at last”. If he was so mistreated, why didn’t he just leave? The image of that final phone call between he and Glenn speaks volumes to me about the character of the two men.

    "People don't run out of dreams: People just run out of time ..."
    Glenn Frey 11/06/1948 - 01/18/2016

  5. #15
    Moderator Ive always been a dreamer's Avatar
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    And OBTW - I agree with most all of the other comments in this thread as well. I love the suggested alternate titles for the book. As I said before, the one that Felder chose doesn't seem to fit.

    "People don't run out of dreams: People just run out of time ..."
    Glenn Frey 11/06/1948 - 01/18/2016

  6. #16
    Administrator sodascouts's Avatar
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    I agree that if the Eagles fully disclosed to Felder what the new terms were and he agreed to them, he has no right to complain. It was "take it or leave it" and he chose the former. I think even he realized that he should have just "taken it" without the complaining at the end - hence the phone call.

    I don't view the phone call as harshly as dreamer does, though. I mean, the guy is so pathetic on it that I can't help but feel sorry for him.

    LTL - I think every self-respecting woman cringed at the parts you highlighted regarding his treatment of his wife. Bernie and Tim were able to resist temptation, after all... so much for the "I defy any man..." line. Of course, it has been said there was some resentment about Bernie not partaking in the more hedonistic aspects of the band - that they felt he was looking down on them - but still, it's obviously not impossible.

    I too wanted more about the personal dynamics of the band, especially after HFO - an era which is rarely talked about as it's not as "exciting" as the fast-living of the seventies.

    There were some anecdotes I found funny, though - like the guys having to figure out ways to do drugs when there were Secret Service agents around thanks to Bernie's girlfriend Patti Davis, daughter of then-governor Ronald Reagan. I was also interested to read about the confrontation before Bernie left the band, as there are several stories of how that went down.

    I was disappointed by the account of the infamous "Long Night at Wrong Beach." I was again curious as to how that went down, but his version doesn't ring true to me.

    Always in our hearts, Never forgotten

  7. #17
    Moderator Ive always been a dreamer's Avatar
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    Well Soda - I agree with you about Felder being pathetic during his firing. I guess it boils down to how we perceive pathetic characters - are they sympathic or are they grossly pitiful and inadequate? Obviously, I must be pretty harsh and feel the latter description applies here.

    The way I look at it is here is a guy with a long history of bitching and complaining who decides to call in lawyers to investigate his employer. What reaction was he expecting? Right or wrong, I can assure you that if I did the same thing, my employer would no longer need my services. All I'm saying is that if Felder thought he was doing the right thing, then I'd say go for it - kudos to him. But, for crying out loud, be willing to accept the consequences and take responsibility for your actions. I think that is the trend in Felder's personality that I see throughout the book that culminates in his firing. He doesn't seem to be able to get past his unrealistic view of himself as a perpetual victim.

    On the other hand, as you mentioned earlier, I respect Glenn for even taking the call. He could have easily refused it. Now, I guess if you want to be cynical, you could say that Glenn only took the phone call so he could rub it in to Felder, but, even Felder doesn't suggest that scenario.

    I also agree with your comments regarding the long night at wrong beach. Again, he portrays himself as the innocent victim here. At least, with 35 years of retrospect behind him, he could occasionally take some responsibility and say "hey, it was probably as much my fault as it was Glenn's" or "I can understand why he may have been upset".

    "People don't run out of dreams: People just run out of time ..."
    Glenn Frey 11/06/1948 - 01/18/2016

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    Administrator sodascouts's Avatar
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    The part were he discusses being inducted into the Hall of Fame is unsettling to me. I really wish I know what really happened. I don't recall them being inducted, and I can't find it anywhere online... but I wish I could see their speeches.
    Oh, almost forgot to tell you -

    You can see the induction speeches here:

    http://www.eaglesonlinecentral.com/d...stuffvideo.htm

    Always in our hearts, Never forgotten

  9. #19
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    Regarding the conversation with Glenn he only rang Glenn when he was unable to speak to Don. Even then he still didn't understand who the band leader was.

    During that conversation he called Glenn 'Roach' - the old 70s nickname. He knows better than I do but the name doesn't seem very appropriate to use when you are trying to ask for your job back and I was surprised that anyone was calling Glenn that in 2001.

    I agree with the comments about how he whined when Susan set up her own career and it was only due to his money that she succeeded. I found that offensive and patronising.

    Even when he talks about the music it is only about his contributions, and occasionally Henley's. Surely it was not THAT cut and dried. He played on these songs and he seems to hate them. It makes it that much harder to swallow the stuff about wanting to be in the band so much if he didn't even like the songs.

    I agree with Dreamer about his claims that his complaining was also for Tim, Joe, Bernie and Randy. I don't get that.

    Regarding the lack of acknowledgement of Glenn's talent, he read Marc Eliot's To The Limit and decided to follow that line, except that he heaps vituperation on Glenn. Eliot dismisses Glenn almost entirely. Felder hates Glenn.

  10. #20
    Moderator Glennsallnighter's Avatar
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    I haven't yet read Felder's book but I DO intend to do so, so I can't comment on it as yet. However I have read To The Limit and I must completely concur with what you say FP. Eliot does indeed dismiss Glenn and gives him no credit at all as being the 'Leader of the Band'. Even from the first chapter it is obvious that Don gets a lot more attention than Glenn and there are also some glaring inaccuracies wrt Glenn . Although not as comprehensive I think 'Flying High' is a much more objective read. JMHO!!
    'I must be leaving soon... its your world now'
    Glenn Frey 1948-2016 RIP

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