Saturday, August 12, 2017

Album Reviews # 71 Glen Campbell - Greatest Hits - 1 Honey Come Back

Glen Campbell died a few days back. This had been anticipated for a while as he had been suffering from Alzheimer's for a few years. Nevertheless, it was a significant moment, as he was a significant figure. An odd one perhaps as you wouldn't easily class him in the canon next to Lou, Leonard and David for example. He didn't for the most part write his own songs and he occupied a place in the middle of the road. Nevertheless, he was associated with some of the very best singles ever released in terms of Rock and Pop.

His Greatest Hits record, (the one you really need), is doubtless nestled in millions of record collections and highly treasured. It certainly is by me. I bought it in my late teens and played it a lot during my university years so it's fiercely entwined with the tug of memory for me. I love its flecked sleeve with Campbell's strangely inexpressive face gazing out from it. He's wearing one of those sixties shirts which mark him out as rather more straight than hippie. The song titles are listed on the cover as if that's enough. It is.

Honey Come Back is the first track. It's a Jimmy Webb song like many of Campbell's finest. It scraped the US Top Twenty in 1970.  An illustration of just how effective the spoken word can be in song. Glen has been dumped and is pleading his girl to come back to him. She doesn't appear to be listening to him. It's Webb at his simplest. He always had plenty of corn in his artillery and it's skilfully deployed here. The classic Country sentiment of how the bright lights are calling and how foolish it is to heed them. It's exactly three minutes long. The vocals appropriately, are honeyed.

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