Sign up for newsletter
 

Campbell passes away at 81

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 – Glen Campbell, a Country Music Hall of Famer and the voice besides such hits as "Rhinestone Cowboy" and "Wichita Lineman," died today at 81. Campbell, who was an ace guitarist, had suffered from Alzheimer's Disease.

Campbell released his final album, "Adios," in June. During his career, Campbell released more than 70 albums and sold 45 million records.

Some of his other big hits were Jimmy Webb's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" and "Galveston," John Hartford's "Gentle On My Mind" and Allen Toussaint's "Southern Nights."

Campbell made history in 1967 by taking home 4 Grammys in the country and pop categories. For "Gentle on My Mind," he received two awards in country and western, while "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" turned the same trick in pop. Campbell received a Lifetime Grammy Award in 2012.

Glen Travis Campbell was born April 22, 1936 in Billstown, Ark. to a sharecropping father. He started playing music as a child and moved to Albuquerque, N.M. when he was about 18 to play in his uncle's band.

By 1960, he moved to Los Angeles to become a session player. He became in demand and was a member of the vaunted Wrecking Crew. He played on recordings by on recordings by Bobby Darin, Ricky Nelson, Dean Martin, Nat King Cole, The Monkees, Nancy Sinatra, Merle Haggard, Jan and Dean, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, and Phil Spector.

Campbell enjoyed middling success as a solo artist, but that changed when he worked with producer Al De Lory. In early1967, Campbell scored a top 20 country hit with "Burning Bridges. Everything changed later that year when "Gentle On My Mind" was released. The song was a huge hit for Campbell. It also was the first of five consecutive number one albums for Campbell, including "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" later that year "Hey Little One," "A New Place in the Sun" and "Bobbie Gentry & Glen Campbell," all in 1968. He would have another number one the following year with "Galveston."

In 1969, Campbell starred in the western movie "True Grit." He also hosted his own weekly variety show, "The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour" from 1969-72.

"Rhinestone Cowboy" was Campbell's biggest selling single with more than 2 million units sold.

The hits waned with Campbell recording for small labels. He was inducted in the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005. He returned to Capitol for "Meet Glen Campbell" in 2008.

Three years later, Campbell disclosed that he was suffering from Alzheimer's and launched his "Goodbye Tour." At the end of the tour, he went into the studio in Nashville to record "Adios." A documentary about Campbell, "Glen Campbell: I'll Miss You" came out in 2014 with the title track nominated for Best Original Song at the Grammys.

While having a clean image, at least later in his career, Campbell's personal life was marked by tumult. He was married four times and had a well publicized, stormy relationship with fellow country singer Tanya Tucker, who was half his age when they had a relationship.

Part of Campbell's problems included having drug and alcohol abuse, but he gave up both. He resuscitated his image and enjoyed much support from the music community during his illness.

Glen Campbell, a Country Music Hall of Famer and the voice besides such hits as "Rhinestone Cowboy" and "Wichita Lineman," died today at 81. Campbell, who was an ace guitarist, had suffered from Alzheimer's Disease.

Campbell released his final album, "Adios," in June. During his career, Campbell released more than 70 albums and sold 45 million records.

Some of his other big hits were Jimmy Webb's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" and "Galveston," John Hartford's "Gentle On My Mind" and Allen Toussaint's "Southern Nights."

Campbell made history in 1967 by taking home 4 Grammys in the country and pop categories. For "Gentle on My Mind," he received two awards in country and western, while "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" turned the same trick in pop. Campbell received a Lifetime Grammy Award in 2012.

Glen Travis Campbell was born April 22, 1936 in Billstown, Ark. to a sharecropping father. He started playing music as a child and moved to Albuquerque, N.M. when he was about 18 to play in his uncle's band.

By 1960, he moved to Los Angeles to become a session player. He became in demand and was a member of the vaunted Wrecking Crew. He played on recordings by on recordings by Bobby Darin, Ricky Nelson, Dean Martin, Nat King Cole, The Monkees, Nancy Sinatra, Merle Haggard, Jan and Dean, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, and Phil Spector.

Campbell enjoyed middling success as a solo artist, but that changed when he worked with producer Al De Lory. In early1967, Campbell scored a top 20 country hit with "Burning Bridges. Everything changed later that year when "Gentle On My Mind" was released. The song was a huge hit for Campbell. It also was the first of five consecutive number one albums for Campbell, including "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" later that year "Hey Little One," "A New Place in the Sun" and "Bobbie Gentry & Glen Campbell," all in 1968. He would have another number one the following year with "Galveston."

In 1969, Campbell starred in the western movie "True Grit." He also hosted his own weekly variety show, "The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour" from 1969-72.

"Rhinestone Cowboy" was Campbell's biggest selling single with more than 2 million units sold.

The hits waned with Campbell recording for small labels. He was inducted in the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2005. He returned to Capitol for "Meet Glen Campbell" in 2008.

Three years later, Campbell disclosed that he was suffering from Alzheimer's and launched his "Goodbye Tour." At the end of the tour, he went into the studio in Nashville to record "Adios." A documentary about Campbell, "Glen Campbell: I'll Miss You" came out in 2014 with the title track nominated for Best Original Song at the Grammys.

While having a clean image, at least later in his career, Campbell's personal life was marked by tumult. He was married four times and had a well publicized, stormy relationship with fellow country singer Tanya Tucker, who was half his age when they had a relationship.

Part of Campbell's problems included having drug and alcohol abuse, but he gave up both. He resuscitated his image and enjoyed much support from the music community during his illness.

More news for Glen Campbell

CD reviews for Glen Campbell

British Live Performance CD review - British Live Performance
Glen Campbell was in fine voice for this 1990 Doncaster, England concert that features strong performances of many of his classic hits and some rare gems, but at times the collection feels a bit dated by the presence of unmemorable tracks from his current album at the time. Campbell's association with songwriter Jim Webb is celebrated nicely not only with megahits "Galveston," "By The Time I Get To Phoenix" and "Wichita Lineman," but one of the highlights is a »»»
I'll Be Me Soundtrack CD review - I'll Be Me Soundtrack
In what will likely become the swansong to Glen Campbell's prolific 50-plus year career, "I'll Be Me" documents both the life and failing health of a man long considered an American icon. While Campbell's battle with Alzheimer's disease is well known, it's still difficult to witness the awful effects of a horrible disease that's effectively robbed him of his musical abilities, cognizance and ability to live life the way anyone of us would wish. »»»
Ghost on the Canvas CD review - Ghost on the Canvas
Glen Campbell slightly gets the start tribute treatment on "Ghost on The Canvas," perhaps his final studio recording due to Alzheimer's. Campbell covers some unlikely songwriters with this collection, but for the most part these unexpected pairings work. For instance, it's great fun to hear Guided By Voices' Hold On Hope, which finds Campbell taking an indie track and polishing it up really nicely. Jakob Dylan's Nothing But The Whole Wide World is starkly beautiful »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: White sounds a lot better than he feels – John Paul White admitted to feeling a little uncomfortable with his current solo acoustic tour. However, with just two guitars and a microphone, White sounded a whole lot better than he likely felt. Although White sang a few songs from his 2016 "Beulah" album, including "The Once and Future Queen" and "Hate the Way You Love... »»»
Concert Review: Harris shows his musical badass side – J.P. Harris may be a self-described "badass," doubtlessly more so in a previous life than he is now, but he sure put it to great use when it came to making traditional country music. The Alabama native has a deep deep, somewhat smoky voice that took charge of the numerous honky tonkers he would play. A chunk of them - "When I Quit... »»»
Follow Country Standard Time  Subscribe to Country News Digest  Follow Country Standard Time on twitter  Visit Country Standard Time on Facebook 

Elsewhere in the news

Currently at the CST blogs

Tyminski goes dark Dan Tyminski (known simply as "Tyminski" on his 2017 release "Southern Gothic") has traditional music roots and unassailable bluegrass street cred especially given his membership in Alison Krauss' Union Station. He is also a powerful songwriter and has been writing songs for himself and others for years now.... »»»
Washburn, Fleck create "Echoes" Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn have powerhouse individual talents; each has followed an estimable career path to where they find themselves today: making complex, but spare, records, writing music together and touring with their son Juno. Their new release, "Echoes In The Valley" features mostly songs written by Fleck and Washburn, banjos, Washburn's strong vocals and very little else.... »»»
Hillman bides his time Legends don't come any more legendary than Chris Hillman. The roll call of bands that comprises Hillman's half century in music reads like a wing exhibit at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame; Byrds, Flying Burrito Brothers, Manassas, the Souther Hillman Furay Band, the Desert Rose Band,... »»»
The Cadillac Three creates its "Legacy" William Shakespeare noted a few centuries back that a rose by any other name would be equally aromatic, and that general idea has musical implications as well. The Cadillac Three knows a thing or two about maintaining a sonic identity after a name change;... »»»
With Stanley and Watson, sound isn't elementary Those aware of the late Owsley "Bear" Stanley likely know him for one of two reasons - his pioneering work manufacturing lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in San Francisco during the mid-to-late 1960s and his role as an innovative sound engineer. Most notably, Bear worked...... »»»
May shifts gears, directions Headed into 2015, Imelda May was on a hit streak. Her rockabilly career was in full swing, nurtured by the likes of former Squeeze keyboardist Jools Holland and guitar icon Jeff Beck. Her albums routinely topped the charts in her native Ireland.... »»»
Lane assumes mantle of "Highway Queen" For most artists, eight years is a fair amount of time in their careers. For Nikki Lane, eight years represents the entirety of her recorded history, and she's filled that relatively short time span with a highlight reel of impressive accomplishments, not the least of which would be actually... »»»
Desperate Man CD review - Desperate Man
While Eric Church has set the bar high with his previous studio albums, "Desperate Man" is right up there with his best and may just be his most accomplished effort to date. Church continues to write memorable songs »»»
Earls of Leicester Live at the CMA Theater in the Country Music Hall of Fame CD review - Earls of Leicester Live at the CMA Theater in the Country Music Hall of Fame
To suggest The Earls of Leicester are bluegrass royalty is no false decree. Unlike other self - proclaimed members of the traditional hierarchy - kings, queens, dukes and such - this sextet comes by the honor naturally: it's their name! »»»
Holler CD review - Holler
Amy Ray's lovely, commanding, southern voice is just one strength in what might be her best solo album to date, "Holler." Her well-crafted songs range from haunting to uplifting to indigenously Southern in all its glory and duality. »»»
Cry Pretty CD review - Cry Pretty
Carrie Underwood's life was reading straight from the storybooks: one of the few American Idol Winners with ongoing success; a professional athlete for a husband; a beautiful baby boy. The string of great fortune turned sharply in 2017, »»»
My Way CD review - My Way
Not one to rest on his laurels, Willie Nelson's second studio release of the calendar year finds the artist dipping back into the Great American Songbook. Previous collections, including 1978's stellar Stardust, 2009's "American Classic" and 2016's "Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin," established Nelson as one of the finest modern interpreters of American standards.  »»»
Let It Pass CD review - Let It Pass
This is the swan song for The Stray Birds unfortunately, but at least they are parting with another musical triumph. This record barely got made as founding members, fiddler/guitarist/banjoist/vocalist Maya de Vitry and fiddle/guitarist/ »»»
Pretty Bird CD review - Pretty Bird
"Pretty Bird" is Kathy Mattea's first studio album in six years, following 2012's "Follow Me Home." The major reason for this gap was Mattea's realization that her voice was changing so much, she felt as if she was losing it altogether.  »»»
The Keep CD review - The Keep
New Reveille, a talented quintet from North Carolina, can boast the finest harmonies that any kind of music can offer. On their debut, New Reveille mine the early American sounds and make them sound fresh. It's a unique sound that embraces »»»
Cactus CD review - Cactus
Elise Davis tells stories and brings relatable, realistic lyrics rather overly relying on imagery, metaphors and symbolism. That was the general take on her widely acclaimed 2016 "The Token." Some of that assessment holds true again here on "Cactus,"  »»»
King of The Road: A Tribute to Roger Miller CD review - King of The Road: A Tribute to Roger Miller
This expansive tribute to Roger Miller features a multitude of fine performances, including plenty of country stars singing Miller songs. As good as these performances are, though, the true stars are »»»
Folk Soul Revival CD review - Folk Soul Revival
Folk Soul Revival has built a reputation for wild energetic live shows. This recording proves they can do well in the studio environment too. The band now makes their home in Bristol, Tenn., the birthplace of country. Make no »»»