If you aren't aware Glen Campbell was part of the elite LA group of studio musicians known as the "Wrecking Crew" who played on the greatest pop and rock recordings made there durin gthe 1960's. That's Glen late in the decade with legendary Crew drummer Hal Blaine. Glen was part of this group from the early 60's until his own hit records Am I sure he was on the records I mention? Well, the Musicians' Union contracts are pretty much smoking guns, as they show who was hired and paid.

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 21:11

A Final Adios--Glen Campbell 1936-2017

 GLEN 2011

 (AP Photo/Matt Sayles, File)

 Me: I heard something you did over 30 years ago, a record with Tex Williams at the Mint in Las Vegas . . . you let rip with a real hot solo.

 Glen: “My Window Faces the South!” That was the early sixties. What was Roger Miller’s line? “I don’t think I’m half as good as I really am.”

 I interviewed Glen Campbell just once, in 1995, for Country Music Magazine's "20 Questions With" feature, not unlike Trish Sheridan's old "Breakfast With" PG feature. I thought back to an old record I had, recorded nearly a decade before Glen became a star, in the days he was an obscure LA sideman. I wasn't sure he'd remember it, but I thought, what the hell?  And I got my answer--spot on.  The rest of the interview was terrific as he talked about the changing country music industry, which he didn't care for. He couldn't contain his pride over his days as part of the loose group of elite LA session musicians known as the Wrecking Crew, which included Leon Russell, Hal Blaine, Tommy Tedesco and Carol Kaye.who worked with everyone from the Byrds to Sinatra. His memory then was impregnable. 

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gods problem child

Despite health rumors, age and the loss of some of his closest musical compatriots, Willie Nelson turns 84 next Saturday (April 29), a day after Legacy Recordings releases God's Problem Child, the ninth studio album he's recorded for the label since joining them in 2012.

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 My podcast review of this 56 song compilation of Buck's first 28 singles for Capitol, starting with his 1957 teen-pop material, ending with his 13th # 1 country single.

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Wednesday, 08 June 2016 08:10

Essential George: Four Spotify Playlists

 

essential george

I recently compiled four Spotify playlists of essential recordings by George Jones spanning nearly his entire career, surveying at the famous, the obscure (and bizarre), the sacred and the collaborations.  The above is not a logo, but the cover of a CD set released a few  years ago.

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A look at Merle Haggard's last 15 years of recording (2000-2015), zeroing in on his social and cultural commentary.

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Merle Haggard changed my life.

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Thursday, 07 April 2016 17:45

Remembering Merle Haggard, Part 1

Merle Haggard, long before he died Tuesday (his 79th birthday) of pneumonia, years after he'd been diagnosed with lung cancer, was one of America's great troubadours. It wasn't just his voice, but his brilliant, nuanced songwriting that managed to touch the heart, the mind and the gut simultaneously in a way few American composers could ever hope to equal.  Today, we'll talk about the impact.  Tomorrow, I'll tell you how he changed my life.

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There was no real music from this week's episode of Fargo.  But for fans of clear acoustic guitar picking, this 41 song lived CD of Doc Watson at New York's famous Bottom Line club in 2002 there's much here to savor.

 

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My take on Don Henley's recently released country album Cass County: a far cry from the Eagles.  

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