In Memoriam: Randy Meisner
More sad news to share today as The Eagles have announced that founding bassist Randy Meisner has died from complications of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He was 77 years old.
“Randy was an integral part of the Eagles and instrumental in the early success of the band. His vocal range was astonishing, as is evident on his signature ballad, ‘Take It to the Limit,’” the band wrote on their website.
Meisner was born in Nebraska and raised on his family farm. He picked up the guitar at age 10 and started playing in local bands soon after. A teacher suggested he take up the bass, and his interest in R&B and Motown solidified the choice.
He started playing bass in 1961 in a local band called The Dynamics, which found some success in certain regions across the States. He eventually moved to California and joined Poco in 1968. He played on their debut, Pickin’ Up the Pieces, but quit shortly after. (He was replaced by Timothy B. Schmit, who would later replace him in the Eagles.)
Meisner co-founded The Eagles in 1971 with Don Henley, Glenn Frey, and Bernie Leadon. The group would become one of the most successful rock bands in history, scoring hit after hit and breaking album sales records. He played bass and sang backup, but also sang lead and wrote songs, including “Take It to the Limit.”
Meisner quit the band in 1977 and went on to have a solo career with a total of four albums between 1978 and 2001. Meisner would reunite with The Eagles for their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998 but never returned to work with them in any meaningful capacity.
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Randy Meisner.