Kent State University Memorial on the Eve of the Fifth Anniversary – May 3, 1975

The Kent State University Memorial Eagles concert was one of many in May 1975. In fact, the Eagles had a show somewhere almost every night in May. Just a few days later they were also in Ohio at the University of Cincinnati. These performances were part of their One of These Nights tour.

The Kent State University concert was on the eve of the fifth anniversary of the shooting of student anti-war protestors by National Guardsmen. There had been a mass demonstration on campus on May 4, 1970 protesting the U. S. involvement in the Vietnam War. The shooting deaths of four student protestors and wounding of nine others occurred on that day in 1970. There were varied opinions as to whether the Eagles should even have a concert on campus that weekend. A sampling of comments to the editor of the Kent State University student newspaper is below.

At this concert on May 3, 1975 Dan Fogelberg, special guest of the Eagles, performed his rendition of “For What It’s Worth” by Buffalo Springfield to a sold-out audience. The Eagles sang Neil Young’s “Ohio”.

The Eagles concert was held in the Memorial Gymnasium on the Kent State campus, and it is reported by persons who were there that Dan Fogelberg and the Eagles participated in the Candlelight Vigil, which was after the concert ended.

Eagles on stage in Memorial Gymnasium

Kent State University Memorial

Randy Meisner, Glenn Frey, Don Felder, and Bernie Leadon

Kent State University Memorial

The Columbian (Vancouver, WA) – Apr. 16, 1975

Graham Nash tells the story of how Neil Young wrote the song “Ohio” immediately after the Kent State shootings.

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young sing “Ohio”

Kent State University Memorial Eagles concert poster

poster 1975 Kent

“Clements said the Eagles have volunteered to remain in town and participate in Sunday’s memorial program.”

1975 Apr 9 Daily Kent Stater

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper)- Apr. 9, 1975

“Ropes had been set up about 7 a.m. to keep the crowd in two lines but were quickly pushed aside. Police were called about 7:30 a.m. to help direct the crowd.”

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper)- Apr. 15, 1975

Kent State University Memorial

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper)- Apr. 15, 1975

Kent State Eagles ticket

Kent State University Memorial

Various comments written to the Editor of the Daily Kent Stater, the Kent State University campus newsletter, prior to the concert:

“The Eagles will appear in concert in Memorial Gym Saturday nght, bringing with them special guest Dan Fogelberg.”

“New addition, Don Felder on slide guitar, received only praise from Frey after recording On the Border. ‘He just blew us away. It was about the best guitar work we’ve ever heard. It was obvious he was on the same level as a Duane Allman or an Eric Clapton,’ he explained.”

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper) – May 2, 1975

“Then came the song the crowd had anticipated. ‘Ohio’ brought back five years of memories in only five minutes of song. It was an emotionally draining performance for everyone in the gym.”

“The Eagles encored with ‘James Dean’ and ‘Tequila Sunrise,’ but declined to continue playing out of respect for the Candlelight Vigil.”

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper) – May 6, 1975

Don Felder’s name is incorrect in this article as Don Feldman.

The Scene (Cleveland, OH) – May 8-14, 1975

Kent State University Memorial

Daily Kent Stater (Kent State student newspaper) – Dec. 4, 1975

Joe Walsh was a student at Kent State at that time in 1970, but he decided to leave the college after that. Because of the shootings, Joe said that he decided maybe he didn’t need a degree that bad. (Joe Walsh was not yet a member of the Eagles at the time of this Memorial in May. He would join them later in 1975 after Bernie Leadon left the band.)

Joe Walsh interview on WEWS Cleveland News Live on 5 about an upcoming Kent State 1986 homecoming parade and concert and raising funds for a memorial – Oct. 7, 1986

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