Randy Meisner

Randy Meisner [1978]

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It's no surprise that Randy Meisner's first solo album sounds a great deal like an offshoot of the Eagles' work, as he'd recorded it not long after quitting that band after a six-year stint. The songs run between the extremes of fluid, guitar-driven rockers ("Bad Man," "Every Other Day") and ballads draped in flowing lyricism with harmony singing ("Daughter of the Sky"), including major contributions from his one-time teenage bandmate Donny Ullstrom. Apart from a somewhat dullish rendition of "Save the Last Dance for Me," the album works well, particularly a soulful and highly personalized rendition of "Take It to the Limit." What is surprising is the absence of original material -- apart from the latter Eagles number, everything is contributed by other writers. Meisner and producer Alan Brackett (who doubles on backing vocals and contributes two key songs, "Lonesome Cowgirl" and "I Really Want You Here Tonight") are well able to take songs by Bill Lamb and others and mold them to Meisner's sound and style. Guitarists Jerry Swallow and Steve Edwards, pianist John Hobbs, bassist Kerry Morris, and drummer Kelly Shanahan make a good band, and Ernie Watts contributes a beautifully understated sax solo on "I Really Want You Here Tonight." "Every Other Day" sounds like a lost Eagles number, and "Heartsong" lives up to its title, ending the album on a deeply introspective note.

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