Hotel California Album Cover Ghost?

On the cover of The Eagles album Hotel California, there is a picture of an abandoned hotel with someone in the doorway. When they took the picture there was no one in the hotel, and when they developed the picture it seemed as if there was no one there. But on the album cover there appeared someone in the doorway. The story is that a person died in the hotel before it became abandoned and then appeared in the photo. Is this real or just nonsense?

asked by Frederick in Music | 14850 views | 08-12-2009 at 06:35 PM

There are so many stories about the ghost on the cover.

Another variation I've heard is that they went back & took the picture twice and both times someone appeared in the doorway. I've also been told that the person is only visible on the album cover & not the tape or cd.

Also some people say the Hotel California was the name of an inn run by cannibals who were in the habit of taking in guests only to serve them up for dinner. The song's closing line ("You can check out any time you like / But you can never leave") seems to have sparked that one.

The truth proves far less satisfying than the myriad rumors that have sprung up around this song.
Hotel California is an allegory about hedonism and greed in Southern California in the 1970s. At the time of its release, the Eagles were riding high in the music world, experiencing material success on a frightening level. Though they thoroughly enjoyed the money, drugs, and women fame threw their way, they were disquieted by it all and sought to pour that sense of unease into their music and to warn others about the dark underside of such adulation.

In a 1995 interview, Don Henley said the song "sort of captured the zeitgeist of the time, which was a time of great excess in this country and in the music business in particular." In another interview that same year, he referred to it as being about a "loss of innocence."

The album has as its underlying theme the corruption of impressionable rock stars by the decadent Los Angeles music industry. The celebrated title track presents California as a gilded prison the artist freely enters only to discover that he cannot later escape.

Some believe the song was written about a real inn bearing that name. Though there is a Hotel California in Todos Santos, a town on Mexico's Baja California peninsula, its relation to the song begins and ends with the coincidence of a shared name. None of the Eagles stayed there, let alone wrote music there. Nor did they have this building in mind when they set down the lyrics to this popular song.

The real Hotel California is not a place; it is a metaphor for the west coast music industry and its effect on the talented but unworldy musicians who find themselves ensnared in its glittering web.

By far the most common theme to surface in Hotel California rumors is one that links the song to devil worship. The lyrics (which speak of trying to "kill the Beast" and not having had "that spirit here since 1969") form the bedrock of the various Satan-related theories, but the belief is also fed by the album design. The inner cover is a photograph of people in a courtyard of a Spanish-looking inn. In a balcony above them looms a shadowy figure with arms spread. Many who look at that photo see Anton LaVey, leader of the Church of Satan, and interpret the spread arms as his welcoming the populace below into Satan's trap. That the people in the picture seem unaware of the gleefully evil figure standing above them only adds to the implicit horror of the scene the innocents below are oblivious to their having wandered into the house of the Devil.

It's wonderful imagery. But it doesn't hold up. The shadowy figure was a woman hired for the photo shoot.

answered by California | 08-12-2009 at 06:41 PM

My brother told me they took the picture when no one was there and when the picture was printed, the ghost was there. They thought it was cool so they sold the album with the ghost on the cover. Spooky.

answered by Anna | 08-12-2009 at 06:43 PM

The Eagle's Album is called 'Hotel California' and was released as a single in early 1977. The song was about the hotel 'you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave' and is taken from myths of the hotel where a weary traveler becomes trapped in a nightmarish hotel that at first appeared tempting. This song is more about the thoughts of self-destruction in the Southern California music industry, as well as Hollywood.

Urban legend has it that 'Hotel California' was the Church of Satan. The Satanic Bible was also written there in 1969 and black magic was to have occurred as well. This myth has never been proven. There is no mention of any hauntings of Hotel California.

answered by Pedro | 08-12-2009 at 06:45 PM

The hotel on the cover of Hotel California is the famous Beverly Hills Hotel. It has never been abandoned. There is no ghost on the cover.

answered by Guest | 08-13-2009 at 12:07 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pedro View Post
The Eagle's Album is called 'Hotel California' and was released as a single in early 1977. The song was about the hotel 'you can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave' and is taken from myths of the hotel where a weary traveler becomes trapped in a nightmarish hotel that at first appeared tempting. This song is more about the thoughts of self-destruction in the Southern California music industry, as well as Hollywood.

Urban legend has it that 'Hotel California' was the Church of Satan. The Satanic Bible was also written there in 1969 and black magic was to have occurred as well. This myth has never been proven. There is no mention of any hauntings of Hotel California.
People watch too many movies and then confuse them with reality.
None of this garbage is true. Read some interviews of The Eagles in Rolling Stone or some other, REPUTABLE source. They debunk rumor after rumor in every interview.
The Beverly Hills Hotel was never abandoned or haunted.

answered by Guest | 02-23-2010 at 05:50 PM

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