The Story Behind the Eagles’ “Take It To The Limit”–and the Fight it Caused Within the Band

Randy Meisner penned several songs for the Eagles, but “Take It To The Limit” is arguably his best effort. The high note Meisner hits at the end of the song never fails to impress when listening back to this track. However, this song wasn’t just a successful bout of co-writing for Meisner, it also caused contention within the band. Check out the meaning behind this track and the story behind the backstage fight it caused, below.

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Behind the Meaning of “Take It To The Limit” – written by Meisner, Glenn Frey, and Don Henley

A touring musician pushes life to its limits. Endless weeks and months on the road, powerhouse performances every night, and limited sleep are not a cycle just anyone could weather. That’s the onus behind “Take It To The Limit.”

In the lyrics, Meisner says he finds this lifestyle almost too much to bear. Nevertheless, he agrees to keep on pushing forward.

“The line ‘take it to the limit’ was to keep trying,” he once explained. “You reach a point in your life where you feel you’ve done everything and seen everything – it’s part of getting old. And just to take it to the limit one more time, like every day just keep punching away at it.”

You know I’ve always been a dreamer
And it’s so hard to change
Can’t seem to settle down
But the dreams I’ve seen lately
Keep on turning out and burning out and turning out the same

So put me on a highway
Show me a sign
Take it to the limit
One more time

[RELATED: 3 of the Best Eagles Songs Without Glenn Frey or Don Henley on Lead Vocals]

The Fight That “Take It To The Limit” Caused

Though the recorded version of this track sees Meisner flawlessly hit a soaring high note, it wasn’t always easy for him to replicate. It caused him an immense amount of anxiety while on tour.

As the story goes, Meisner was set to perform the track as an encore at an Eagles show but ultimately refused to do so. The decision didn’t sit right with Frey, causing a fight to break out between the two band members.

Meisner left the group soon after, finding himself at odds with the band. Despite the difficulty this song caused, it remains one of Meisner’s finest efforts.

(Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

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