Joe Walsh is known to many as the rubber-faced guitarist for the Eagles. He’s one of the most impressive guitarists to ever pick up a Fender Stratocaster, personally responsible for classics like “Funk #49,” “Rocky Mountain Way,” and “Life’s Been Good,” to name a few. What many people might not know about Walsh, is that’s he’s also a Gold Star kid.
“My father died in active duty in 1949 when I was about 20 months old” he said. “So, my whole life I’ve been aware of what a family goes through and what a kid goes through, making that adjustment. I’ve been kind of resonant to that.” As the wars in both Iraq and especially Afghanistan rage on, with seemingly no end in sight, Walsh has decided to do something to help the veterans of those wars cope with the effects of the battlefield, as well as their reintegration with society, by holding a blowout concert call Vet Aid on September 20 in Fairfax, Virginia. Walsh will perform, along with the likes of Gary Clark Jr., Keith Urban, and the Zac Brown Band.
“I’ve always kind of been on the perimeter looking at it and it just doesn’t feel right,” he admitted. “I decided to take it up a notch and make it a cause, try to get some awareness going and try and help. There’s too many families that are hurting.”
As a veteran myself, the event means a lot to me, and I recently had the opportunity to talk to Walsh about this new venture, the future of the Eagles, and what it meant to perform at the last Steely Dan concert ever to feature it’s founder Walter Becker before he died.