Published: Sat, August 12, 2017
Arts&Culture | By Spencer Underwood

Glen Campbell dies at 81

Glen Campbell dies at 81

This final period of his touring and recording life is documented in the 2014 film Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me. He was one of the biggest stars of the late 1960s and 1970s, selling more than 45 million records, with 12 gold albums and 75 chart hits.

A look back at his incredible output underlines just how much he contributed to music fans' enjoyment over such a long period. We are blessed to have known him and the world is blessed to have his musical legacy that will forever be part of America's best music.

As USA Today reported, Campbell had a pithy explanation for his speedy exit from the farming town where he was born. "I will always love you, Glen!" said Dolly Parton. After having accompanied Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley or the Beach Boys, the guitarist prodigy went solo in 1963. This was all despite Campbell being unable to read music. Three of his songs have been inducted into the Grammy Awards Hall of Fame: "Wichita Lineman" (in 2000), "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" (2004) and "Gentle on My Mind" (2008). He picked up the CMA Entertainer of the Year award in 1969.

Campbell died Tuesday in a Nashville area care center at the age of 81 after a six-year battle with Alzheimer's. He and Tucker broke up acrimoniously in 1981, but he went on to find Christ and end his substance abuse.

The "Rhinestone Cowboy's" long career produced more than seventy albums, and in 1967 he made history by winning four Grammys.

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Additionally, UNITED STATIONS RADIO NETWORKS will pay tribute on its weekly program "RICK JACKSON'S COUNTRY CLASSICS", set to air the weekend of SATURDYA, AUGUST 26th and SUNDAY, AUGUST 27th.

But Campbell himself remained upbeat.

The documentary, which chronicled his 2011-2012 farewell tour, offered a poignant look at his decline from Alzheimer's while showcasing his virtuoso guitar chops that somehow continued to shine even as his memory unraveled.

"He said, 'It's not like I am going to miss anybody anyway, '" Raymond said. "Just thinking back I believe suddenly that the 'raison d'etre" for every Glen Campbell show was to bring every suffering soul within the sound of his voice up a peg or two".

"Heartbroken. I owe him everything I am, and everything I ever will be".

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