Eagles' Don Henley Sues For Return Of Handwritten 'Hotel California' Lyric Sheets

29 June 2024 | 10:55 am | Mary Varvaris

Don Henley maintains that 100 pages, including ones containing his handwritten 'Hotel California' lyric sheets, were stolen.

Eagles @ Rod Laver Arena

Eagles @ Rod Laver Arena (Credit: Nathan Goldsworthy)

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On Friday (28 June), Eagles singer and multi-instrumentalist Don Henley filed a lawsuit in a New York court regarding the return of his handwritten Hotel California lyric sheets.

The lawsuit arrived after prosecutors dropped Henley’s complaint in March. Don Henley maintains that 100 pages, including ones containing his handwritten Hotel California lyric sheets, were stolen.

Henley claims that collectibles experts, rare book dealer Glenn Horowitz, former Rock and Roll Hall of Fame curator Craig Inciardi and rock memorabilia seller Edward Kosinski have been “scheming” to sell the lyric sheets, the Associated Press reports.

According to Henley’s lawyer, Daniel Petrocelli, the lyric sheets in question contain 100 pages and were never authorised to be “peddle[d] for profit.”

Kosinski and Inciardi’s lawyers have said that Henley’s claims are “baseless” and noted that the case was dropped back in March after prosecutors ruled that the singer withheld “critical information”.

Kosinski’s lawyer, Shane Crowley, told the Associated Press that Henley is “desperate to rewrite history”.

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Lawyers for the defendants argued that Henley gave the lyric sheets to a writer working on a never-to-be-published Eagles biography decades ago. The sheets were later sold to Horowitz, who sold the pages to Kosinski and Inciardi in 2012.

“Because Kosinski and Inciardi have also claimed title over Henley’s lyric sheets, the issue must be decided in a civil court with appropriate jurisdiction,” the complaint from Henley’s representatives reads (per Variety).

“Henley therefore seeks a declaration from this Court that he is the lawful owner of his seized lyric sheets to provide the ‘satisfactory proof of his title’ that will facilitate the District Attorney’s return of his property.”

In September, the Eagles embarked on their The Long Farewell tour across the US.

“The Eagles have had a miraculous 52-year odyssey, performing for people all over the globe, keeping the music alive in the face of tragic losses, upheavals and setbacks of many kinds,” the band wrote on their website.

They continued, “We know how fortunate we are, and we are truly grateful. Our long run has lasted far longer than any of us ever dreamed. But, everything has its time, and the time has come for us to close the circle.”

The Eagles last toured in Australia in March 2019, a few years after the band announced another split following the tragic passing of Glen Frey. Founding member and bassist/vocalist Randy Meisner passed away in July 2023.