Unplugged 1994 Previously Unreleased Second Night Following years of public speculation, the Eagles formally reunited in 1994, 14 years after splitting up in 1980. The line-up comprised the five Long Run-era members - Glen Frey, Don Henley, Joe Walsh, Don Felder, and Timothy B. Schmit - supplemented by Scott Crago (drums), John Corey (keyboards, guitar, backing vocals), Timothy Drury (keyboards, guitar, backing vocals), and Al Garth (sax, violin) on stage. For the record, we never broke up, we just took a 14-year vacation , announced Frey at their first live performance in April 94. The ensuing tour spawned the live album, Hell Freezes Over (named for Henley's recurring statement that the group would get back together when hell freezes over ), which debuted at number one on the Billboard album chart…
This is undoubtedly the equivalent of Gilberto Gil "Unplugged" – Gil, his acoustic guitar, and a nonelectric five-piece band recorded live in a studio – and it is a thoroughly musical triumph as Gil mesmerizes his attentive audience for some 74 minutes. He starts out with the nearly pure reggae of "A Novidade," but before long, he establishes himself in a mostly consistent, loping set of intimate grooves thoroughly rooted in Brazil. Gil had a hand in writing all of this tuneful material except Anastacia Dominguinhos' "Tenho Sede," Caetano Veloso's "Sampa," and a left-field choice, Stevie Wonder's "The Secret Life of Plants," which lends itself very well to Gil's bossa nova approach and proenvironmental position. It is not a complete live portrait of Gil, though; the astounding quickness and flexibility of his voice is fully vented only toward the end of the concert. The later Quanta Live album will give you a wider panorama of Gil's range.
MTV UNPLUGGED won 1995 Grammy Awards for Album Of The Year and Best Traditional Pop Vocal Performance. "Moonglow" was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Collaboration.
Of course, Tony Bennett never was "plugged in," so the concept here is redundant, but what the hell. It's been a while since a Tony Bennett live album, and he's always terrific in concert. Certainly, he is here, singing 22 pop standards, including many of his hits and many other songs he's made his own. Elvis Costello and k.d. lang drop by, but they're feeding off Bennett's energy and star power, not the other way around. The album may be part of a successful marketing plan, but forget that and revel in the singing of a masterful song interpreter still, after 40 years, at the top of his game.