The album received considerable airplay on three fronts: Popular Music, Mainstream Rock and Adult Contemporary. "If Dirt Were Dollars", "I Will Not Go Quietly", "The End of the Innocence", "The Last Worthless Evening", "How Bad Do You Want It?", "The Heart of the Matter" and "New York Minute" (or more than half the album) received airplay on Album-Oriented Rock stations. "The End of the Innocence", "The Last Worthless Evening", "New York Minute", "How Bad Do You Want It?" and "The Heart of the Matter" were all popular hits, while "The End of the Innocence", "The Last Worthless Evening", "New York Minute" and "The Heart of the Matter" were big on the AC chart. "I Will Not Go Quietly" is another fine track from the album.
Henley won a Grammy Award and an MTV Video Award for the title track, which detailed how U.S. President Ronald Reagan wasn't as innocent as he was made out to be. The End of the Innocence has sold six million copies for Henley, has a Track Rating of 9.00 and remained on the album chart for 148 weeks (nearly three years).
- "The End of the Innocence" (Henley, Bruce Hornsby) – 5:16
- "How Bad Do You Want It?" (Henley, Danny Kortchmar, Stan Lynch) – 3:47
- "I Will Not Go Quietly" (Henley, Kortchmar) – 5:43
- "The Last Worthless Evening" (John Corey, Henley, Lynch) – 6:03
- "New York Minute" (Henley, Kortchmar, Jai Winding) – 6:37
- "Shangri-La" (Henley, Steve Jordan, Kortchmar) – 4:55
- "Little Tin God" (Henley, Kortchmar, J.D. Souther) – 4:42
- "Gimme What You Got" (Corey, Henley, Lynch) – 6:10
- "If Dirt Were Dollars" (Henley, Kortchmar, Souther) – 4:34
- "The Heart of the Matter" (Mike Campbell, Henley, Souther) – 5:24
As you might expect, Henley is a popular guy and he had no trouble getting background help on this album. He of course plays drums, Timothy Drury played keyboards, David Paich of Toto played keyboards and strings, Jeff Porcaro of Toto played drums, Mike Campbell was on guitar and keyboards, John Corey played guitar and keyboards, Bob Glaub, Pino Palladino and Larry Klein were on bass, Michael G. Fisher played percussion, Bruce Hornsby played keyboards, Stanley Jordan played guitar and drums, Steve Jordan played drums and electric guitar, Danny Kortchmar played guitar and keyboards, Stan Lynch and Jim Keltner played drums and percussion, Waddy Wachtel played acoustic guitar, Jay Winding played keyboard and bass keyboard, Wayne Shorter played the soprano saxophone while Steve Madaio contributed his trumpet playing.
Sheryl Crow (years before she was a huge star), Melissa Etheridge, J.D. Souther, Edie Brickell (who would later lead the New Bohemians), Ivan Neville of the Neville Brothers, Axl Rose, Patty Smyth (who would later sing a duet with Henley), Carmen Twillie, Take 6, Charley Drayton, Maxine Waters and Valerie Carter sang background vocals.
Several people worked on the production, including Henley. Others that helped produce the album were: Bruce Hornsby, Mike Campbell, John Corey, Danny Kortchmar, Greg Ladanyi and Stan Lynch. Engineers were John Corey, Marc DeSisto, Rob Jacobs, Eddie King, Greg Ladanyi, Stan Lynch, Mark McKenna, Brian Scheuble, Bob Fogt and Shelly Yakus. The album was mixed by Jacobs, Rob Jaczko and Yakus. Mastering was done by Stephen Marcussen. Art Direction was led by Jeri Heiden with photography from Stephen Danelian, Ken Nahoum and Alberto Tolot.
The album was recorded over a period of three years and was released June 27, 1989 on Geffen Records.
Checking in at #92 All-Time--The End of the Innocence, by Don Henley.