Charles Kelley Was “Chasing Down” the Vibe of Glenn Frey and the Eagles on “The Driver”

Capitol Records Nashville

When Charles Kelley heard that Eagles‘ founding member Glenn Frey had passed away at the age of 67, the news hit him particularly hard, because of the iconic band’s influence on his music, especially his current single.

“I was chasing down, with this record especially, a song like ‘The Driver,’ you know a total Eagles; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young type of vibe,” he confesses. “I heard that news [Monday] and it just broke my heart because he seemed so young still.”

The Lady Antebellum hitmaker says Frey’s music is part of his roots, and he wanted to showcase that on his first full-length solo album, due February 5.

“That’s the music I grew up on. That’s the music when I was in cover bands, throughout middle school and high school, that’s what we were listening to. We played a lot of the Eagles, we played a lot of Crosby, Stills and Nash, we played a lot of Lynyrd Skynyrd and Allman Brothers. You know, if I ever had to say what music I really came from, it’s that. So I wanted to try to kind of get back to that a little bit on this record.”

Charles is a big fan of the 2013 documentary History of the Eagles, and recalls how it reminded him of Frey’s importance in the band, and also got him thinking about where they might fit into the music scene today.

“The Eagles, obviously if they came out today, I mean they’d be country,” he asserts. “And they were, kind of. They started out kind of as a country band. I guess I’d always known that Glenn was amazing, but I guess, you know, sometimes Don Henley took the spotlight. And Glenn Frey, like all the best Eagles’ songs, Glenn Frey was behind writing those. So I think I have such respect as a songwriter,” he concludes.

“I mean gosh, he’s left behind such a legacy of music, that you know, people will be listening to for the rest of… for the rest of time I think, timeless music.”

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