Randy Meisner of the rock band 'Eagles' performs onstage with an acoustic guitar at the Omni Theatre on June 20, 1977 in Atlanta, Georgia.
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Randy Meisner, Eagles Co-Founder and 'Take It to The Limit' Singer, Dies at Age 77

Randy Meisner co-founded the country-rock group and sang one of its most beloved hits.

Randy Meisner, a founding member of the Eagles, died on Wednesday (July 26) at age 77. A statement from the band cited "complications from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary disease (COPD)" as his cause of death.

Born on March 8, 1946, in Scottsbluff, Neb., Meisner first impacted country-rock as the bassist of Poco and Rick Nelson's Stone Canyon Band. As a session musician, he played on albums by James Taylor and Waylon Jennings.

Meisner formed the Eagles in 1971 alongside Glenn Frey, Don Henley and Bernie Leadon. The band's bassist and high harmony vocalist, Meisner also pitched in as a songwriter and lead singer. Most famously, he's the voice behind 1975 hit turned classic rock staple "Take It to the Limit." Deeper cuts sang by Meisner include a cover of the bluegrass tune "Midnight Flyer" which appears on 1974's On the Border.

"Randy was an integral part of the Eagles and instrumental in the early success of the band," the group shared on its website. "His vocal range was astonishing, as is evident on his signature ballad, 'Take It to the Limit.'"

Meisner stepped away from the Eagles before the tour for the final album he appeared on, 1976's Hotel California.

"I could have tripled my money if I'd stayed," Meisner told People in 1981. "But I was just tired of the touring. It's a crazy life that you live at twice the normal speed. When it got to the point of sanity or money... I thought I'd rather have sanity."

Meisner played with the Eagles one final time for the band's 1998 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction. He turned down an opportunity to rejoin the group for its 2013 World Tour due to his health.

In 2016, Meisner told the New York Daily News that the Eagles helped pay his medical expenses.