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Jimmy Webb Opens Up About Glen Campbell's Alzheimer's Battle

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Jimmy webb Songs | Jimmy Webb Opens Up About Glen Campbell's Alzheimer's Battle | Country Music Videos
Photo credit: therootsagency.com
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Glen Campbell, widely known as the "Rhinestone Cowboy", is one of the greatest country singers of all time. He is truly legendary and his music permeates every generation of country artist that has come since. During his almost six-decade-long career, Campbell issued 57 studio albums, charted over 80 singles, and brought life to many motion pictures through music. 

Now, his work with the man known as "America's Songwriter", Jimmy Webb is being showcased in a very special one-night-only concert. The singer and songwriter had partnered on a seemingly endless number of tracks, with the most notable "Wichita Lineman", "Galveston", and "By The Time I Get To Phoenix", leading the group.

The 69-year-old songwriter will bring a great deal of the classic music he has written to Charlotte, North Carolina on Saturday, February 6th for a concert he calls "Jimmy Webb: The Glen Campbell Years". In a recent article with GoUpstate, Webb opens up about why he's decided to perform the concert. 

"I'm sharing his music. I'm sharing his story of a courageous guy, maybe the bravest guy I ever knew," Webb says of the concert. "And I look back on it now, it was almost 50 years that I did with this guy. I could never envision a day when I would turn around onstage when he wouldn't be there.”

Campbell has been battling Alzheimer's since 2011, and many consider him to be the celebrity face of the disease's awareness movement. While he suffers from memory loss, the legendary singer still shows strength. His longtime friend and collaborative partner remembers the singer's determination in the face of adversity. 

"He was always up, always positive, always happy. His reaction to the disease was 'Well, I'm going to keep playing.' A lot of people would have just sagged into a corner and said 'Well, poor, poor pitiful me.' He wanted to go on tour. He wanted to play and he was able to walk on stage with stage-four Alzheimer's."

But, Webb knew that the disease had taken hold in a deep part of the singer when his life's work started becoming a more distant memory. 

"When Glen started forgetting the lyrics to 'By the Time I Get To Phoenix' and 'Wichita Lineman,' then one knew the affects were truly insidious and it was a wicked, evil fate for someone who's mind was so quick and could remember thousands of songs and licks on guitars."

These two musical masterminds had a relationship that has gone on seemingly unparalleled since they had topped the charts with their never-ending list of songs, and that is what Webb remembers most: the good times. 

"Down through the years, we were able to craft some remarkable pop music together and when it came to music, the playing field was level. We had a special communication between us. We could communicate without speaking. Live on stage, we were aware of probably what the other guy was going to do maybe before he even knew what he was going to do.”

Their ability to craft beautiful songs in the way nobody else could earned them both an incredible amount of recognition throughout the years and is something nearly every country fan loves today. 

Watch the video below for a special glimpse into a partnership that helped build country music! 

LYRICS BELOW

I am a lineman for the county
And I drive the main road
Searchin' in the sun for another overload
I hear you singin' in the wire,
I can hear you through the whine
And the Wichita lineman is still on the line

I know I need a small vacation
But it don't look like rain
And if it snows that stretch down south won't ever stand the strain
And I need you more than want you,
And I want you for all time
And the Wichita lineman is still on the line

And I need you more than want you,
And I want you for all time
And the Wichita lineman is still on the line

 

 

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