Following a three-night test run in Las Vegas last fall, the Eagles will start their Hotel California tour tonight (Friday) with the first of three shows at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta.

Don Henley tells us the show is divided into two sets with all of Hotel California played first. Then, after a 20-minute break, they’ll do a two-hour set of hits.

Don Henley on the Eagles doing Hotel California in its entirety on tour:

“We wanted to do something that we’d never done before, and we have the talent now, the personnel, to pull it off. I’m not sure we could have successfully done it before. I mean Vince [Gill] and Deacon [Frey] play a big role in our ability to do that album. And, we also wanted to add the element of the orchestra. And we have the horn section. We added a 22-piece choir just to sing ‘Ah’ on one song.”

The 46-piece orchestra, as well as the choir, are made up of local musicians from each town they play. At one point in the three-hour show there are 77 performers on stage.

Henley says they took note of other artists doing complete albums on tour, most notably Steely Dan and Bruce Springsteen. But, he adds that there was another reason for doing it.

“People are buying vinyl records again and getting into it and buying turntables and going back to the old way of playing and listening to records and we like that. We think that’s a good thing. So, we incorporated that into the show as well.”

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