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Building the Perfect Beast

Don Henley

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

Listening to Building the Perfect Beast, a newcomer to Don Henley's work might never have imagined that as part of the Eagles, he'd been a key player in making country-rock a part of the mainstream. Beast had the feel of some great lost back-to-the-land epic, but transplanted to 1984 Hollywood. There, banjos had less currency than the latest synths and drum machines. Henley and co-producer Danny Kortchmar used guitars more as layers between the newfangled stuff, creating a rich sound that made the singer-songwriter's meditations ring with authority. The biggest hit was a romantic cry, "The Boys of Summer," but the greatest track was the sweeping "Sunset Grill." Here Henley made a "Hotel California" for the whole country, but still rooted in L.A. In an era of great radio pop, it was a standout among standouts.

Customer Reviews

Well rounded album you can listen to over and over

This album has some real gems on it. Not just the two big hits. Songs like Sunset Grill, and A Month of Sundays.. I've probably listened to this album 200 times, I still enjoy it as much now as the first time I listened to it. It's got some lasting power.


I did not realize that so many other people loved sunset grill as well And boys of summer is one of those songs that makes you sit in the car until it finishes if it comes on the radio, even after you have parked. a classic. awesome. i own the album on cassette, somewhere, and have been missing it. itunes is going to bankrupt me:)


The Boys of Summer has always been my favorite song- I told my two best friends that if something should ever happen to me, play this song at my funeral. Yesterday, I was watching a video of it on Youtube when the date November 19, 1984 scrolled across the screen. I was shocked. The day Don Henley released this album was the day I was born. I turned 24 yesterday and so did "Beast".


Born: July 22, 1947 in Gilmer, TX

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Out of all of the Eagles, Don Henley had the most successful solo career. After the group initially broke up in 1982, Henley released his first solo album, I Can't Stand Still. Although it wasn't as successful as an Eagles record, the album performed respectably, launching the number three single "Dirty Laundry" and going gold. Building the Perfect Beast followed two years later and established Henley as a solo star in his own right. Featuring the Top Ten hits "Boys of Summer" and "All She Wants...
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