Q: You're 61. I'm not the first person to note that you've remained remarkably well-preserved over the years.
A: Well, it's all going now. It's all sliding. It's just inevitable. It's like Mahler said to one of his students: "Congratulations, you're finally getting a face." We have the capacity now to sort of indulge our vanity and indulge our sense of control, in controlling things to try to look like whatever we want. But in most cases it's the beginning of a disastrous course.
Q: You mean Botox?
A:I don't know about Botox, but I mean, surgery—and what do people get for it? They get a couple more years. Eventually they look like that woman in Brazil. They look like photographs of people enduring supergravity on the liftoff of a rocket. I think the Buddhists have it better: simply accepting what happens in life. When I was young, you could see it from a mile away when artists were trying to remake themselves for a youth market. I don't know that I would've had the language to call it that at the time. But you knew it was false when you saw it.
Q: A lot of people probably still don't know that you and Glenn Frey cowrote "Take It Easy," which turned into sort of a mission statement for the Eagles.
A: I used to not sing "Take It Easy" because I just had the feeling when I was singing it that everybody thought I was singing an Eagles song. The truth is, that song, because of the Eagles' hit, and because of what Glenn did to that song, it's hugely popular—probably the most famous song I ever had anything to do with—and a complete joy to play. One thing is that this imagery of being in a car and being out in a place like Winslow, Arizona—so many people immediately, like immediately, before that song was even a hit, were saying, "Winslow! I know what you mean!" Everybody had been to Winslow, because it was like this one little speck along Route 66. Well, Highway 40 now. But it was this one place that you had to pass through to get anywhere.
Q: I was doing some Googling and I found out that there's a "Standing on a Corner in Winslow, Arizona" festival every year.
A: Yeah. I've heard about this.
Q: They have a statue. They have postcards and T-shirts.
A: Yeah. I actually begged them not to make the statue look anything like me. I said, "You know what you should really do—you should make this statue be of this Navajo guy that is the inspiration for that line." "Standing on the corner in Winslow, Arizona"—I mean, it was a Navajo guy with really dark skin and a blazing bright turquoise cowboy shirt and a white cowboy hat and boots. That's who ought to be standing on the corner, man. You're in the middle of Indian country. But I guess you can't really argue with what people see in a song.