THE EAGLE’S NEST
After over 20 years in L.A., the Eagles’ Don Henley has checked out of hotel California: He and wife Sharon Summerall, 33, who are expecting a baby girl this month, have moved to Dallas, approximately 150 miles west of his hometown of Linden, Texas. (Henley will keep a second home in L.A.) “I want my daughter to grow up around all those conservatives so she’ll know how to rebel properly,” jokes Henley, 48, who has recently released Actual Miles a solo greatest hits collection plus two new songs. “If she inherits any of my personality she’ll need no help from me.”
What drew you back to Texas?
I wanted to get a clearer picture of what influenced me. There’s a rich blues tradition in the East Texas region. I want to find out where folks like [blues greats] Leadbelly and T-Bone Walker were buried and talk to their families. I want to do a documentary about that cultural environment.
Is there a message behind your new single “The Garden of Allah”?
It’s about the lines between good and evil blurring and our inability to recognize evil. In the old days words like sin and Satan had a moral certitude. Today they’re replaced with self-help jargon, words like dysfunction and antisocial behavior, discouraging any responsibility for one’s actions.
What do you listen to these days?
I like Radiohead. Sarah McLachlan is brilliant. Sometimes I just want silence and I’d rather read. I’m rereading The Ecology of Commerce by Paul Hawken, the most visionary book on the environment as it relates to business in America. It was out of print, so I called up the publisher and asked what it would take to get it back into print. They said you would have to order 5,000 copies. So I did.
Are you glad you waited for kids?
Ye, I have more patience now. The timing is just right. I’ll be 70 when she’s 21, but I expect to be robust and ornery.