Happy Birthday to Glen Campbell, who turns 77 on today (April 22nd)!!! Campbell is best remembered for his string of 1960's and '70s Top 40 hits, including the Top Tens "Wichita Lineman" and "Galveston," and the Number Ones "Rhinestone Cowboy" and "Southern Nights."
In 2011, Campbell announced that he was in the early stages of Alzheimers Disease and that following the release and tour in support of his latest album, Ghost On The Canvas, he'll be retiring. Among the guest stars on the new set are Jakob Dylan, Chris Isaak, Dandy Warhols, Paul Westerberg, who wrote the album's title track, and former Prince bandmate Wendy Melvin -- whose father Mike Melvin, worked numerous sessions with Campbell in the '60s. Campbell performed his final concert on November 30th, 2012 in Napa, California.
In 2008 he released the critically acclaimed, Meeting Glen Campbell, which featured such cover tunes as John Lennon's "Grow Old With Me," Green Day's "Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)," U2's "All I Want Is You," Foo Fighters' "Times Like These," the Replacements' "Sadly Beautiful," Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' "Walls," and the Velvet Underground's "Jesus," among others.
Campbell was born in Delight, Arkansas, one of 12 children. In 1958, after years of working the club circuits, Campbell headed west and almost immediately found work as a session guitarist in Los Angeles. He says that music came so naturally to him that he never thought much about it, beyond the joy of playing it: "I never really started out to be anything. Country (or) rock, pop -- I didn't do it. I was going to be a guitar player. It never entered my mind that I would be a singer cutting records and singing on the radio. I was basically a guitar player (first)."
Prior to solo fame, Campbell was part of the elite group of top studio session players in L.A. called "the Wrecking Crew" and performed on many of the hit singles recorded in Hollywood from the late 1950's through the early 1970's, including tracks by the Ronettes, the Beach Boys, the Monkees, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Leslie Gore, Paul Revere & the Raiders, the Righteous Brothers, Sonny & Cher, Jan & Dean, Gary Lewis & the Playboys and many of Phil Spector's classic '60s "Wall Of Sound" productions.
Campbell says that every one of the "Wrecking Crew" players deserves to be inducted in the "sideman" category included on each year's ballot for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: "Well, they should get it, because they had the talent. And there were more records that came out of Los Angeles and the studios there in the '60s than any studio in the world. And it was basically the same group of people playing on all of those records."