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Victim Of Love by Eagles

Album: Hotel CaliforniaReleased: 1976
  • This Eagles rocker features lead vocals from Don Henley, lead guitar from Don Felder and slide guitar from Joe Walsh.

    The lead vocals were a source of contention, as Felder came up with the idea for the song and wanted to sing it. He remembers being promised a lead vocal on the Hotel California album, and thought this would be the one.

    According to Don Henley, they let record the vocal, but it didn't meet the band's standards. To distract Felder, the band's manager Irving Azoff took him out for a meal while Henley put down his tracks.

    "It was a bitter pill to swallow. I felt like Don was taking that song from me," Felder said. "But there was no way to argue with my vocal versus Don Henley's vocal."

    Henley said that Felder demanding a lead vocal on this song would be the equivalent of him demanding to play lead guitar on "Hotel California."
  • On the on the run out groove to side 2 of the Hotel California album, scratched into the vinyl is the message: "V.O.L. is a five piece live." This means that the song "Victim of Love" was played live in the studio by all five Eagles playing together.

    Since the Eagles were accused of being so staid and lifeless in the studio, they decided to play live in the studio and then let people know they had done it. The band confirmed this in liner notes to their Very Best of The Eagles compilation. Their engineer, Bill Szymczyk, did the engraving.
  • Along with Don Felder, Don Henley and Glenn Frey, J.D. Souther helped write this song. Other Eagles tracks Souther co-wrote include "Heartache Tonight" and "New Kid In Town."
  • In our interview with Don Felder, he explained: "We were trying to move in a heavier direction, away from country rock. And so I wrote 16 or 17 song ideas, kind of in a more rock and roll direction, and 'Victim of Love' was one of those songs. I remember we went in the studio and we recorded it live with five guys playing. The only thing that wasn't played in a live session was the lead vocal and harmony on the choruses. Everything else was recorded live."
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Comments: 5

In the History Of The Eagles documentary, Felder says that he assumed he'd be getting the lead vocal. Henley explained that they recorded several versions with Felder's lead vocal, but nobody was very happy with them. So while Felder was out of the studio, Henley's own lead vocal was inserted over the instrumental track already recorded. Henley said "Having Don Felder sing lead vocal on Victim Of Love would be like having me play lead guitar on Hotel California."Ken - Louisville, Ky
Felder wrote the core and originally titled it "Iron Lung" because of the slapback echo sound on the guitar reminded of his childhood time spent in an iron lung.Guy - Benson, Nc
I always called this the "chicken song" because of the guitar riffs in the beginning of the song :)Pj - Twain Harte, Ca
Great song, nice guitar solos.Mayank - Ranchi, India
Great song. Joe Walsh's addition was the shot in the arm the Eagles needed!!!Jim - Long Beach, Ca