Don Felder is an American musician, best known for his presence in the classic rock group The Eagles. He has been a part of this legendary band from 1974 to 2001, where he has contributed as a lead guitarist. Apart from playing the instrument, Don Felder is also known as a songwriter.

Early Life and Beginning of Career

Don Felder was born as Donald Williams Felder in Gainesville in Florida in 1947. He has German roots. His first experience of playing the guitar was when he was barely ten years old where he received a guitar as a bet from one of his friends. Following that, he taught himself to play the instrument. His early inspirations included heavy metal and rock and roll. He turned out to be very good in this skill. By his mid-teenage, he had initiated a rock band named The Continentals.

He made friends with Bernie Leadon when he was fifteen and still a part of The Continentals. Leadon later became a part of his group. Don Felder gave a few informal guitar lessons to fellow students of the Gainesville High School to earn a bit more money, the same school that he went to. One of his students was none other than legendary musician Tom Petty.

When his group broke up, he moved to New York and started a band titled Flow. His rock album with this band was a huge hit and attracted the attention of the CTI Records label.

Later, Don Felder moved to Boston and with the help of Leadon, helped in the founding of the classic band The Eagles. In 1972, he began to tour with The Eagles, such was the popularity of the band.

Career with The Eagles

The first song that Don Felder was associated with for The Eagles was Good Day in Hell for which he provided side guitar. He joined the band after that. He sang a few songs as well, such as One of These Nights which featured on their fourth album.

Don Felder is credited as the music writer for the band’s signature song Hotel California. However, the monumental success of this song was quite difficult for the band to match up to and therefore they split up in 1980. However, in 1994, they came back together for an MTV concert. During this concert, Felder provided the music for an acoustic version of Hotel California.

He was fired from The Eagles in early 2001. This was not taken easily by him and he filed lawsuits against the group. He made two complaints against the group. In 2002, the two complaints were consolidated into one and he won an out-of-court settlement of an undisclosed sum of money.

Personal Life

Don Felder was married from 1971 to 2000 to Susan Pickersgill. They have four children together. One of his daughters is Leah Jenner, who is a known actress. Her husband is Brandon Jenner who is a noted US track and field athlete. Don Felder’s songs are freely available on his YouTube channel. He is believed to have a net worth of a staggering $60 million.

Last Modified: Apr 7, 2020

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