Jump to Content

Welcome! You’re browsing the No Depression Archives

No Depression has been the foremost journalistic authority on roots music for well over a decade, publishing 75 issues from 1995 to 2008. No Depression ceased publishing magazines in 2008 and took to the web. We have made the contents of those issues accessible online via this extensive archive and also feature a robust community website with blogs, photos, videos, music, news, discussion and more.

Close This

Not Fade Away - Reissue Review from Issue #8 March-April 1997

Glen Campbell

The Glen Campbell Collection (1062-1989) (Razor & Tie)

“Glen Campbell was the original country crossover guy,” Jimmy Webb contends, and he’s basically correct. Campbell’s late-’60s smash hits with Webb’s songs “By The Time I Get To Phoenix”, “Wichita Lineman” and “Galveston”, as well as John Hartford’s “Gentle On My Mind”, were an integral part of country moving beyond the farm and into the city, where the masses snapped up his records so voraciously that he soon had his own prime-time TV show to boot.

The Glen Campbell Collection (1962-1989) features those four groundbreaking hits and 36 other tracks that document the ups and downs of Campbell’s popularity over four decades. The contrast between the collection’s first track (the bluegrass-tinged “Kentucky Means Paradise”) and the second (the sunny, rolling folk of “Gentle On My Mind”) speaks to the four years of distance between them, during which time Campbell did tenure on the road with the Beach Boys (as Brian Wilson’s replacement) and as a studio guitarist. Those experiences apparently steered Campbell in a much more pop-oriented direction, as the tracks that follow for the rest of the first disc stress string arrangements and the melodic strengths of classic songwriters such as Webb, John Loudermilk, Boudleaux Bryant and Gordon Lightfoot. The disc’s final track is about as jarring as the first, breaking from the countrypolitan mood with Campbell’s charging guitar leading the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra through a romp of “The William Tell Overture.”

Disc two begins with a handful of lesser-known tunes from the early ’70s, when Campbell’s star power had waned somewhat even though he issued some of his best work during this period. (Reunion, a 1974 album recorded with Webb, was probably the best album of his career, and is sorely absent from this collection.) The disc gains steam a few tracks in with Campbell’s career resurgence of the mid-’70s on the strength of such hits as “Rhinestone Cowboy”, “Country boy” and “Southern Nights”. The latter half of the disc covers Campbell’s gradual descent from pop heights once again, his presence occasionally being reaffirmed during the ’80s with a modest hit on the country charts.

As general career overviews go, Razor & Tie’s collection does a reasonable job of representing Campbell’s biggest hits and the cyclical nature of his popularity. For a deeper and often more interesting look beyond the songs that got played on the radio, Capitol’s recent reissues of four Campbell albums from the 1960s — Big Bluegrass Special, Gentle On My Mind, By The Time I Get To Phoenix and Wichita Lineman — are well worth seeking out.

Enjoy the ND archives? Consider making a donation with PayPal or send a check to:
No Depression, 460 Bush St., San Francisco, CA 94108

Discuss

Did you enjoy this article? Start a discussion about it, or find out what others are saying in the No Depression Community forum.

Join the Discussion »

Find out what's going on in roots music. Share concert photos and videos, learn about new artists, blog about the music you love.

Join the No Depression Community »

Originally Featured in Issue #8 March-April 1997

Cover of Issue #8 March-April 1997

Sorry, this issue is SOLD OUT

Buy our history before it’s gone!

Each issue is artfully designed and packed full of great photos that you don‘t get online. Visit the No Depression store to own a piece of history.

Visit the No Depression Store »


From the Blogs

  • The Post-Newport Earthquake: Watkins Family Hour
    Did you feel it? That's what everybody in Los Angeles asks each other whenever a shake or quake rattles and rolls through the valleys and flatlands. Sometimes there's just a release of pressure beneath the crust, and other times it's an up and down jolt that lasts only a second. And then you forget about it. Until the next time.  Sunday night […]
  • Chris Isaak's Life Beyond the Sun
    In 2011, Chris Isaak took the long overdue step of recording an album at Sun Studios in Memphis, Tenn. It wasn't just any album, it was faithful interpretations of classic songs by his musical mentors and heroes: Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins. It didn’t take much of a leap of imagination to predict that the album would be […]
  • Dave & Phil Alvin & the Guilty Ones – Dakota Jazz Club (Minneapolis, Minn. – July 26, 2014)
    “My brother Dave is a triple threat and I’m so proud of him – singer, songwriter, and guitar player.” That’s what Phil Alvin told a July 26 sellout crowd at the Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis, Minn. The show was winding down but fans were totally pumped as the Alvin brothers exchanged pleasantries and showed no sign of their famed sibling rivalry after Dave […]
  • Celebrating 40 Years of Schoolkids Records: An Interview with Owner Stephen Judge
    This year marks the 40th anniversary of Watergate. That's not really anything to celebrate, it's not an accomplishment, and what's that got to do with music? Nothing. It simply marks the inevitable passage of time. But, 2014 also marks the 40th anniversary of Raleigh, N.C.'s Schoolkids Records, which is an accomplishment and is definitely […]
  • Ray LaMontagne at the Woods at Fontanel (Nashville, Tenn. – July 25, 2014)
    Ray LaMontagne writes great songs and makes great records. And that's certainly no small feat. His live shows, though, while being technically and musically superlative, really don't leave the audience with a whole lot to hang on to other than the technique and the music. There's no personal engagement on LaMontagne's part. It's as i […]
  • Freight Train Boogie Show #264 features new music from Old Crow Medicine Show, Carolina Story, Yvette Landry and The Sweet Potatoes
    FTB Show #264 features the new album by Old Crow Medicine Show called Remedy.  Also new music from Carolina Story, Yvette Landry and The Sweet Potatoes. Here's the iTunes link to subscribe to the FTB podcasts.  Here's the direct link to … […]

Shop Amazon by clicking through this logo to support NoDepression.com. We get a percentage of every purchase you make!


Subscribe To the No Depression Newsletter

Subscribe to the No Depression Newsletter