Beyond his singing, hosting and acting careers, Glen Campbell is also widely known for his guitar-playing skills. He is a wizard in strumming from acoustic to pop, to country and rock. Below are some clips of the great moments where our Rhinestone Cowboy worked his magic.
Early this year, he was honored by The National Guitar Museum with their Lifetime Achievement Award for his invaluable contribution to the art of guitar playing.
“Glen is best known for his singing and performing career…but equally important is his stellar guitar legacy which goes back nearly 60 years…his tremendous virtuosity as a guitarist is an essential component of recorded music over the past half century.”
-HP Newquist, Executive Director of the National Guitar Museum-
How He Started?
When he was four years old, his uncle Boo gifted him a guitar and taught him the basics. At age six, he could already play and perform on his own. Even without formal training, he continued to practice and to develop his talent in guitar playing by tuning into radio and records. When he reached fourteen, he dropped out of school and went to work with his brothers in Houston. Besides his day jobs, Campbell sharpened his guitar skills by performing in various events from fairs, church picnics, and choirs, to radio stations and pub houses.
At age seventeen, he joined his uncle’s band in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He made appearances on his uncle’s radio show and on children’s program called K Circle B Time.
At age twenty, he started his own band called Western Wranglers and they perform almost nightly every week.
At age twenty-two, however, he went to Los Angeles and became a session musician. With his exceptional talent noticed, he became part of The Wrecking Crew, the most in-demand studio musicians in the 1960s to the ‘70s. By the time Campbell went solo and became successful in his own right, he enlisted them as a backup unit for several of his solo recordings like Gentle on My Mind, By the Time I Get to Phoenix, and Wichita Lineman.
From 1980s to 2011, he continued performing; making appearances on shows, going on tours, and even releasing a new album called “Meet Glen Campbell.”
For seven decades, Campbell was on his boots playing and inspiring many younger musicians like Vince Gill, Keith Urban, Brad Paisley and of course, his children. His was a fruitful life and a fruitful career.