Raven hair and ruby lips
Sparks fly from her fingertips
Echoed voices in the night
She’s a restless spirit on an endless flight
Welcome to my April A-Z! I’m exploring songs by the fabulous Eagles and today’s feature is “Witchy Woman,” which was written by Don Henley and Bernie Leadon for the 1972 debut album Eagles. It was released as the second single from the album and reached No. 9 on Billboard pop singles chart. (“Take It Easy” was released first and made it to 12.) Leadon started writing WW while he was still a member of the Flying Burrito Brothers, and Henley helped him finish it after Leadon joined the Eagles. It turned out to be the only song on Eagles where Henley had a writing credit, and he said that “Witchy Woman” marked the turning point in his professional songwriting career.
Woo-hoo, witchy woman
See how high she flies
Woo-hoo, witchy woman
She got the moon in her eyes
Henley said that WW was inspired by a number of women, including those he’d met at various LA clubs and one he knew who was into the occult, but he had Zelda Fitzgerald (F. Scott’s wife) mainly in mind while he worked on the song due to reading her biography at the time, plus he was suffering from the flu and a high fever. He suggested he was a bit delirious. The line “she drove herself to madness with the silver spoon” could be a reference to Zelda’s time in a mental hospital along with the hallucinogenic drink absinthe, popular during the 1920s, in which sugar cubes were dissolved using a slotted silver spoon (Wikipedia).
Well, I know you want a lover
Let me tell you, brother
She’s been sleepin’ in the Devil’s bed
And there’s some rumors going ’round
She can rock you in the nighttime ’til your skin turns red
E-trivia: On an episode of Seinfeld, Elaine’s new boyfriend Brett is obsessed with and constantly distracted by the Eagles song “Desperado,” but he won’t allow Elaine to make it “their song” because he insists it’s his song. She suggests “Witchy Woman,” but Brett rejects that too. At the end of the episode, Brett gets injured and as his doctor begins to operate, he becomes distracted by “Witchy Woman” the same way Brett always got distracted by “Desperado.”
Alrighty, peeps! We are in the home stretch now with only 5 Eagles songs left to go. Thanks for reading along.
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