Call me Russ L

I am a linesman for Notts County

Posted in Music by Russ L on 6 May, 2010

Judging by appearances it’s very hard to believe that Glen Campbell (as seen at Birmingham Symphony Hall on 30/4/10) is 74. He looks, what, late 50s? Early 60s at the oldest. Craziness, especially when one considers his troubles with the old *glug glug glug* in the past. His slightly rambling talk between songs is a little less misleading: “I’m happy to be here; hell, I’m just happy to be anywhere” he announced, at least three or four times.

He’s well looked after, though, with his family around him on tour – three of ‘em in his band, in fact (I imagine that saves on costs no end). His eldest daughter, Debbie Campbell, had a real air of Mother Hen about her. I bet she keeps ‘em all behaving on the road.

The voice hasn’t gone, either – tonnes of emotion but still well-controlled. They did all your faves, and in fact got quite a few of ‘em out the way quickly – the first three songs of the set were “Gentle On My Mind”, “Galveston” and “By The Time I get To Phoenix”, which was a surprise. There was an overall happy atmosphere which permeated into some of the more sombre songs but it didn’t really hurt them, and there was time for some silly fun too – “Duelling Banjos” and the “William Tell Overture”. We had his new Foo Fighters cover (the only surprise for me is that we haven’t seen more of that sort of thing from more old ‘uns, post-Cash’s “American Recordings” series), we obviously had “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “Wichita Lineman” (the latter one of the bestest songs ever, as acclaimed by all who are correct and righteous), and even his bleedin’ dreadful cover of “Southern Nights” didn’t seem too foul in context.

I enjoyed this even more than I expected to.

(Someone else writes here).

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4 Responses

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  1. andydaly said, on 24 May, 2010 at 8:37 am

    Very enjoyable blog. Thanks for the link.

    Re: “I’m happy to be here; hell, I’m just happy to be anywhere” Did he nick that from Iggy, or Iggy get it from him?!

    Cheers,

    Andy

  2. Russ L said, on 24 May, 2010 at 9:32 am

    That may be the first time that anyone has ever asked if Glen Campbell and Iggy Pop may have had an influence on one another.

    (No bother, by the way – I did enjoy your write-up of the I&TS gig).

  3. andydaly said, on 24 May, 2010 at 3:24 pm

    Ahh!

    But surely you knew that if you play the first four bars of ‘Wichita Lineman’ backwards (and speed it up slightly) you get the riff to ‘Wanna be your Dog’ ?

    I’ve also heard that in the ‘early days’ Glen Campbell caused something of a stir at the Grand Old Opry by wearing his jeans in a manner unbecoming to a Country singer, but which proved a major influence on the young Osterberg.

    Remember, you heard it here first.

    Incidentally, I saw Glen Campbell on telly recently and was mightily impressed with what I saw, and perhaps more importantly, heard. I had never realised he knew his way round a guitar as well as he does.

  4. Russ L said, on 24 May, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    Iggy used to be a telephone engineer in Kansas, too, if the voices in my head are to be believed. Suddenly it all makes so much more sense.

    Meanwhile: yup, Glen knows how to twang a string or two. Technical standards of musicianship aren’t a big deal for me but they were certainly very high all-round at this gig. His family members weren’t freeloading in that respect (or any other, I hasten to add).


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