The Eagles payed tribute to the late, great Jimmy Buffett during the first show of their farewell tour at Madison Square Garden in New York City on September 7th, performing a few Buffett songs and sharing fond memories of the "Margaritaville" artist. Video footage captured by a fan depicts Eagles co-founder Don Henley delivering a heartfelt speech just before the performance began.
"Last weekend, we lost a dear friend and the world lost a musical icon — our dear friend Jimmy Buffett. Jimmy Buffett is now sailing on the cosmic ocean having that cheeseburger with Glenn and Randy," he relayed in reference to deceased Eagles bandmates Randy Meisner who passed away in 2023, and Glenn Frey who passed away in 2016.
Buffett died on September 1st after loosing a four-year battle with skin cancer, specifically an aggressive form of Merkel cell carcinoma. The 76-year-old island icon was surrounded by family and friends at the time of his death. Henley continued:
"We always liked to say, we always laughed and said, ‘We survived the '70s together.’ And the '80s were rough, too. Jimmy was one of the hardest working men I ever saw, but he made work look like play. He brought joy to everything he did — including the work. And one of his final wishes was that we keep the party going. We're going to dedicate these next two songs to him, they're his songs that he wrote."
Eagles bassist, Timothy B. Schmit was a part of Buffett's Coral Reefer Band from 1983-1985, and kicked off the tribute with Buffett classic, "Come Monday." Following the performance, guitarist and keyboardist Joe Walsh told the audience that he and Buffett were kicked out of "some of the finest hotels in the world" together back in the day, continuing with "Fins," to conclude the special tribute.