Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Glen Campbell, Goodbye: A Tribute From Andy

Glen Campbell: 1936 - 2017 (81 Years)
A Tribute From Andy

I remember Glen Campbell because he was my wife's favourite singer. She was always singing, Annie's Song and others like Wichita Lineman and Galveston. Witchita Lineman is one of the 1001 Songs You Must Listen To Before You Die by Robert Dimery. 

Also, 500 Miles and A Place In The Sun were easy songs to relate to. I was not attracted to Campbell and his songs at first but began to appreciate him with such lyrics:
                                You Tube Video by Mark Moscatello
Like a bird on a tree
I keep waiting to be free
Moving on, just moving on...

I first heard the Engelbert Humperdinck version but with Campbell's style, typically rustic, an open air feel and with that country lilt, I thought it was movin' enough. 
Annie's Song too (from John Denver actually) was another one that attracted me. Again the words, with poetic nuances, made me listen:

You fill up my senses like a night in the forest
Like a mountain in springtime, like a walk in the rain
There was a multiplicity of meaning here and taking me away from:

Well, there's one for the money, 
Two for the show
Three to get ready,
Now go cat go... (Elvis Presley)

Glen Campbell was already well established when I first learnt about him and by the late 60's when I met my future missus, we always had a comfortable discussion about this session guitarist and country singer. 
It was an appropriate and polite chatting point during the coffee hours at Wonderland Milk Bar above DBS Bank at East Coast Road, just next to the Roxy Cinema. Or was it somewhere else?

I learnt what a Linesman was, never knowing that they existed since we don't have them in Singapore. Or do we? The other two hits were Try A Little Kindness and It's Only Make Believe. There was Rhinestone Cowboy and Southern Nights.

One of Campbell's biggest hits, By The Time I Get To Phoenix, according to Blue Eyes Frank Sinatra is, "the greatest torch song ever written."
This singer, with his rugged smile, went on to become one of the best-known country singers internationally. He sang and recorded nearly 900 songs on his 70 albums and sold 45 million of them during his career.
Rest In Peace Mr Glen Campbell. Your songs, like your name, will live for a long long time.

And she'll cry, just to think, I'd really leave her
Though time and time I've tried to tell her so
She just didn't know I would really go.
Wonderland Milk Bar or coffee house above DBS Bank @ East Coast Road beside the Roxy Cinema, a rendezvous for chit chats and food.

Images: Google.


FL said...

Hi, Andy, I am an old fan of Glen Campbell since the early 70s. I am sure you are, too. The world has lost one of the top singers. He produced many top hit songs in the 70s. Condolences to Glen's loved ones. May his soul rest in peace. Andy, thanks for the remembrance of a great artist.

ANDY: Pop Music Not Pills. © said...

Thanks, FL.

Yes, Glen Campbell is not one of my favourites but my wife likes his singing and C/W style melodies. We're missing another pop star who's going to that Goldmine In The Sky.

You're one of very few readers who have written in. I shall put up the other comments soon.

Take care my friend and appreciate your valuable information all these years!

JOEY KOH (the Canadian Connection) said...

The country singer, Glen Campbell passed away on 8/8/17 aged 81. We dedicate this song to his memory. May his soul rest in peace.


henri gann said...

'Rhinestone Cowboy' Glenn Campbell has been laid to rest on Wednesday in a private ceremony at his hometown of Delight, Arkansas - The Associated Press (8/10/17)


By the Time I Get to Phoenix" is an American pop song written by Jimmy Webb and made famous by Glen Campbell, whose version reached #3 on the U.S. Pop charts in 1967. It was originally recorded by Johnny Rivers in 1965.


You've got it. Waylon Jennings talked about the time Eddie Van Halen came to him and asked if he could arrange for him to have a guitar lesson with Glen. That's the level of esteem he commanded from the other masters of the guitar. Glen's gone now, but where he is, he's got all his faculties back - and then some - and is now singing for the angels. Lucky angels. Do they give Grammy's in heaven?


My gosh, this song -- and this performance -- reduces me to absolute mush. Glen Campbell is pure genius, his voice effortlessly produces the purest beauty. And the song itself... written by Jimmy Webb... what was going through his mind when he composed the music and lyrics?

What is the source of the inspiration that can move another person to compose poetry and music which, when combined, brings the rest of us to tears? And are the tears the result of the voice that sings the words and makes the music, or are they the result of knowledge that something so simple yet so incredibly powerful was created by another mortal?

Campbell and Webb surely will live on. Thank you to both.