Judy Collins


Composed by Don Henley / Glenn Frey

Song Review by

A true modern-day pop standard, "Desperado" is what "Yesterday" is to the Beatles or "Your Song" to Elton John. A heartfelt, dramatic lyric paints a character that is a loner by choice, cutting himself off from love. The chorus line, "You'd better let somebody love you," is one of the most eloquent lyrics of its time. Musically, it's equally beautiful in its simplicity, with the vague country & western melody fitting the cowboy character like a pair of old chaps. Although the Eagles' version is considered the classic, Linda Rondstat had a huge hit with it as well. This version by Judy Collins is somewhat unknown, yet it easily rates up with the more popular versions, and her elegant reading is relaxed and emotional at the same time; it is one of the standouts from her excellent Hard Times for Lovers album.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Hard Times for Lovers 1979 Rhino 3:32
No Image 1995 Lightyear 3:32
Forever: An Anthology 1997 Elektra 3:32
Introducing... Judy Collins 2006 Rhino 3:32
Essential Acoustic Love 2008
Various Artists
Warner Music
blue highlight denotes editor's pick