Eagles, Desperado: the loneliness of hard men

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Oh, you’re a hard one
I know that you’ve got your reasons
These things that are pleasin’ you
Can hurt you somehow

This song starts with the piano. We imagine it vertical, just like in an old saloon. In fact, this is the concept of Eagles’ album, Desperado, released on April 17th, 1973.

Don Henley slips melancholic on the melody and tells us about Desperado, a hard man who probably doesn’t know that he’s suffering because he misses love. A tormented man, with no rules, out of his track and unable to take back control.

Desperado
Why don’t you come to your senses?
Come down from your fences, open the gate
It may be rainin’, but there’s a rainbow above you

Don Henley recognizes in him this state of mind, even the word “freedom” is too much in situations like those, as he walks alone through the streets.

Desperado is not free. He is alone and he doesn’t realize it. He doesn’t see his prison. Meanwhile, the rhythm is insistent, the melancholy of the piano stops and the arches enter into a love lyric.

It’s here that Don Henley seems to understand that Desperado is ready. He is ready to open the gate and find the rainbow instead of rain. He’s ready to love. His voice becomes more reassuring, he suggests to come back, take control and understand that love is waiting for him. It will be his cure.

Let somebody loves you

Desperado had already understood, however, that love is everything. In this song, Don Henley is just accompanying him.

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