"Hotel California," where Jethro Tull checked in first, and then the Eagles

"I know it's the same chord sequence. I can hear it. But at the same time it's a different size, a different tone, a different context. "Hotel California" is an amazing song, great! I'm very happy for them that they were able to do something like that! Although sometimes in jest I hint that I take 'Hotel California' as a kind of tribute..."

What the famous song "Hotel California" by the Eagles is really about, and why its story is connected to Jethro Tull

"Hotel California." - timeless classics of the band Eagles. The song was released in 1977 and quickly found success! To this day it still carries weight: for many music lovers the acquaintance with the works of American rockers begins with this composition. And at the end of the 90's the readers of the magazine Guitarist recognized guitar solo from Hotel California the best in history!

Yes, the solo in this song is really beautiful. And it's no wonder it's been around so much for decades. noise! Often Eagles fans blame other musicians in plagiarism - I think it's a very familiar motif. From "California", apparently. And if you are one of those who have caught yourself thinking of plagiarizing "Hotel California" quite by accident, we can surprise you very much: it is quite possible that the Eagles themselves are behind peccadillo! But first things first.

What is this place - Hotel California

Eagles "Hotel California" Album Cover
Eagles "Hotel California" Album Cover

Despite the beautiful title, this song is not at all about how wonderful it is to live in California! On the contrary, the Eagles decided to show flip side This "bohemian oasis," of which many artists speak in no uncertain terms of the true the American dream

"Some people dance so they don't forget themselves,
And some people want to forget everything..."

The composition script is very cinematic: The protagonist was tired from his long wanderings in the desert. Stupefied by substances, he began to drown in his sleep and when he heard a bell ringing, he saw "her. Anyway - he didn't know if it was heaven or hell, but he found himself in a place called "Hotel California.". It's a bizarre world, glamorous but also frightening...

"They gathered to feast.
They stabbed the creature with their steel knives..."

The hero is so ScaredI was so surprised that he rushed away - he wanted to get out of the place immediately! But gatekeeper told him sparingly:

"You can vacate the room at any time,
But you can never leave!"

Don Henley
Don Henley

What real meaning of these undoubtedly powerful lines? In his interview Don Henley said:

"This song is about the dark side of the American dream, about the excesses that turn people into animals. You could say it's the end of innocence!"

The delightful Laurie Rodkin
The delightful Laurie Rodkin

Some lines are also inspired by Henley's breakup with Lori Rodkin - a jewelry designer from Los Angeles, who at one time saved the actor's Robert Downey Jr from addiction and its serious consequences! But that's another story.

Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull and the charge of plagiarism

Young Ian Anderson
Young Ian Anderson

When the single Hotel California was released, the audience practically had no chance: the listeners were absolutely delighted with such powerful, heartfelt, mysterious and frightening lyrics! But there was one person who immediately smelled something wrong... And it turned out to be Ian Anderson, group leader Jethro Tull. After listening to the sensational hit, Anderson caught himself thinking that it reminded him of one of his own songs! It's about "We Used To Know" 1969. Ian is sure the chord sequence used is the same! Listen, evaluate, and compare:

Yes, something similar in sound indeed eat. But it can hardly be called plagiarism. It's more like. tribute on the part of the Eagles. Or a sudden burst of inspiration... The fact is that in 1972 bands toured together! Anderson himself admitted:

"Maybe they caught something in that song at the time that was particularly appealing to them, and they didn't realize it themselves. And then, after a while, that inspiration came out in 'Hotel California.

But there is a very interesting point here: the fact is that the tour dates from 1972whereas Don Felder - the main composer of the song - only joined the Eagles in 1974! Of course, as a friend of Bernie Lydon he could have attended one of the performances... However, in his interview Felder states: before this incident he never heard "We Used To Know," and I wasn't interested in Jethro Tull at all!



We think it's hard to accuse "Hotel California" of plagiarism. No matter how you look at it, these songs different. But even if the famous "Hotel California" had really been inspired by "We Used To Know," it would not have been at all did not take away of its splendor and grandeur. As for Anderson, he is very much flattering this similarity:

"I know it's the same chord sequence. I can hear it. But at the same time it's a different size, a different tone, a different context. "Hotel California" is an amazing song, great! I'm very happy for them that they were able to do something like that! Although sometimes in jest I hint that I take 'Hotel California' as a kind of tribute..."


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