By Andrew Macdonald
This workweek, I tuned into some great songs performed by Glen Campbell, who died at 81 in Nashville in 2017.
In his lifetime, he was sometimes described as a living legend.
Born and then buried in Arkansas, he was a singer, a really talented guitarist, songwriter, television host, and actor, and was active from 1958 to 2013.
Married four times, and with eight children, his genre varied from country and western, through folk, pop, easy listening, gospel, and soft rock. He did vocals, guitar, banjo, and, from what I learned, he also commanded the Scottish bagpipes. Songs like Rhinestone Cowboy and Gentle On My Mind earned him admiration from millions of fans.
Wikipedia tells us he released 64 albums during a career that spanned five decades, selling over 45 million records worldwide, including 12 gold albums, four platinum albums, and one double-platinum album.
Campbell started playing guitar at age four after his father gave him a Sears-bought $5 guitar as a gift, with his Uncle Boo teaching him the basics of how to play, says an online biography. Most of his family was musical and he said, “back home, everybody plays and sings.” By the time he was six he was performing on local radio stations”,
In the early ’80s, with the encouragement of his fourth spouse, he overcame an addiction to booze and cocaine that had taken root in the previous decade.
“Following his late 2010 Alzheimer’s diagnosis, Campbell embarked on a final Goodbye Tour, with three of his children joining him in his backup band. He was too ill to travel to Australia and New Zealand in the summer of 2012. His final show was on Nov. 30, 2012, in Napa, Calif. After the end of the tour, Campbell entered the studio in Nashville to record what would be his final album, Adiós, which would not be released until five years later.
“According to his (fourth) wife, Kim Campbell, he wanted to preserve ‘what magic was left’ in what would be his final recordings. In January 2013, Campbell recorded his final song, ‘I’m Not Gonna Miss You’, during what would be his last recording sessions. The song, which is featured in the 2014 documentary Glen Campbell: I’ll Be Me, was released on Sept. 30, 2014, with the documentary following on Oct. 24.”.
The songs this work week that I tuned into from Glen Campbells, are YouTube recordings of Galveston, released in 1969, and a lovely song called, Try a Little Kindness, both performed live in 2002.
Galveston was released during the height of the Viet Nam war, with the lyrics telling the story of a young solider leaving his 21-year-old lady friend behind in the seaside city, while he feared dying in the war.
Try a Little Kindness is a message on how to live a great life.
To see his South Dakota 2001 live tune Galveston, click here.
To see his Little Kindness tune, performed live in 2002, click here.